Richard McDowell made history when he gained a runaway victory in the Veteran Athletic Club’s 10,000 metres track championship at the Millennium Arena, Battersea Park.
Not only was it his first ever track race over the distance but he was also the first athlete with the same name to win the McDowell Cup, presented to the winner of the event, for the event which was first contested in 1982.
McDowell, 39, was the only Hercules Wimbledon runner among the 23 competitors in his race and won by 1:43, lapping the entire field.
“It was a blustery evening and wasn’t ideal for running a fast time,” said McDowell. “There weren’t any guys to keep me company so it was an entirely solo effort.”
Club-mate Finn Johnson was there providing encouragement and giving him lap times.
McDowell completed the first half of the race in 16:04 but speeded up during the final 12 laps to complete the second half in a faster 15:50.
The win was a useful warm-up for him ahead of Sunday’s Bournemouth marathon.
Hercules Wimbledon’s cross country runners made a solid start to the new season when they provided both individual winners in the East Surrey League meeting at Lloyd Park, Croydon, on Saturday.
Teenager Henry Silverstein made a winning start to his autumn racing programme as he took the senior five miles race in 28:40, despite being one of the youngest runners in the field at 17.
He won by 38 seconds to win his first senior cross country race. Other leading Hercules Wimbledon runners among the 88 finishers were Rob Tuer (10th in 30:45) and Simon Woodley (29th in 32:54) while Lisa Thomas was fifth in the women’s race in 35:16.
Morgan Rennie, who like Silverstein is clearly benefitting from the coaching of Hercules Wimbledon’s Mark Livingstone, also posted his first cross country race win in taking the young athletes two miles event in a tight finish by just one second in 10:46.
Hector Revill was seventh U17 runner in 11:29, finishing 13th of the 84 competitors. Edward Newton (11:57) was seventh U15 finisher, while Thomas Beare (12:14) and Hans Hinde (12:16) were fourth and sixth U13 runners.
Hercules Wimbledon provided the top two women finishers in the Wimbledon Common 5km parkrun on Saturday. Gina Galbraith took the honours in 19:00, finishing 23 seconds ahead of Alex Binley.
Adam Harwood once again headed home the Hercules Wimbledon contingent finishing third of the 503 runners in 17:31, just 15 seconds outside his best time set in June. Richard Evans was second of the 18 Hercules Wimbledon finishers, taking seventh place in 18:19.
Jonny Earl was third out of 313 runners in the Kingston event in a PB of 16:25, a six second improvement on his previous best set in September last year.
Rob Tuer warmed up for the East Surrey League race later in the day by finishing sixth out of 359 runners in Dulwich Park in 17:04.
Teenager Elena Dauster posted a PB for the second successive week in finishing sixth in the women’s section at Fulham Palace in 19:33, slicing eight seconds off her previous best.
Hercules Wimbledon are fielding two teams in the English senior men’s road relay championship at Sutton Park, Birmingham, on Saturday following their impressive performances in the South of England championships at Crystal Palace last month.
Team manager Fred Green is hoping for a top-10 finish.
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