BY TOM POLLAK
Richard McDowell, Hercules Wimbledon’s top long-distance runner, warmed up for next month’s postponed London Marathon by heading home the club contingent in the Under The Lights 5km road race in Battersea Park on Thursday of last week.
McDowell, 42, who was top veteran over-40 finisher when he last ran in the London race in 2019, finishing 10th overall, smashed his previous best time for 5km to finish seventh out of 150 runners in 14:33 seconds.
He eclipsed his PB of 15:13 set at Wimbledon Park in October last year to prove he is in good form for the big London race on Sunday, October 3.
McDowell just pipped his younger club-mate Tom Jervis, who was 12th in 14:39 to also improve on his PB of 15:19 set in 2017. It was a good night for PBs with 83 of the 150 runners achieving them.
Third of the 21 Hercules Wimbledon runners in action was Ed Mallett, who finished 18th in 14:47, just four seconds outside his PB, set at Battersea Park in May. Eleven of the club’s runners were rewarded with PB times. Alex Milne was 24th in 14:57, slicing nine seconds off his previous best set in 2014.
Others to improve their PBs were Jackson Creegan (44th in 15:17), Henry Silverstein (49th in 15:25), Robbie Hynes (65th in 15:42), Ross Franks (67th in 15:47), William Leslie (68th in 15:48), Andrew Merry (90th) in 16:16, veteran Simon Wade (101st in 16:24) and James Bannister (118th in 16:45).
Gina Galbraith, the only Hercules Wimbledon woman in action, was first over-45 veteran in 18:38.
Other finishers were Oliver Carrington (32nd in 15:02), Joe Croft (47th in 15:24), Joe Toomey (54th in 15:33), Matthew Sharp (63rd in 15:39), Finn Johnson (98th in 16:22), Richard Jones (109th in 16:32), George Ramsey (128th in 17:12 and Rob Tuer (139th in 18:07).
Milne headed home a 339-strong field to win the Richmond Park 5km in a personal best 15:41, slicing 23 seconds off. He finished more than two minutes ahead of the second runner.
David Lewin posted a PB in finishing runner-up of 202 runners in Stockport, Greater Manchester, in 18:12, while Adam Harwood also improved on his PB by 38 seconds in finishing runner-up of 265 runners at Denbies Vineyard in 18:48.
Battersea Park during the week, Hector Revill was runner-up out of 246 runners on his debut in the St Andrews parkrun in Edinburgh in 17:04.
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