Herne Hill Harriers round-up: Katie Snowden makes winning start to outdoor track season


Great Britain international middle distance runner Katie Snowden opened her outdoor track season with a resounding race win at the prestigious USATF Golden Games at Mt San Antonio College in Walnut, California on Sunday.

At a meeting featuring many leading world athletes, the women’s B 1,500m race was held around 3am UK time – more than five hours after the A race -and Snowden produced a superb front running victory in a time of 4:06.06.

Snowden took the race by the scruff of the neck and struck out on her own for the final 700m after the pacemaker dropped out and enjoyed a commanding race win, recording her second fastest 1,500m time to date and her quickest since 2017.

The strength of her run was illustrated by a final winning margin of more than seven seconds, with her sub 64 seconds final lap being the fastest of the race.

Having spent the last two months training at altitude in Flagstaff, Arizona after racing for Team GB at the European Indoor Championship in Poland in March, this was a clear indication that she is now in very good racing shape.

Snowden has another race in the States this weekend. If she is included in the A race it will be a good opportunity for her to aim to clock an Olympic Games qualifying time before the GB Olympic Trials meeting at the end of June.

It was a PB fest for Harriers runners at Battersea Park on Friday in the Under the Lights 5km road race.

Nick Bester, “fresh” from his marathon PB only 12 days earlier, producing another best for him over this shorter distance, with 14:53 on the clock.

Close behind on the same wave was Lewis Laylee with a PB 14:56, then Carl Delaney was a couple of seconds outside his best with 15:06. Andrew Warburton and Jack Brotchie ran PBs of 15:15 and 15:23 respectively and Jeff Cunningham’s 15:49 was a road PB. Joe Elliott with 15:53 was another PB, while Bryn Reynolds was the only Herne Hill wave winner of the evening on the very first one as he clocked 16:14.

Jack Dickenson ran 16:25 followed in by more PBs from Josh Pewter (16:28) and Jonny Whittall (16:32). M45 Robin Jones showed good pace judgement to run (17:00), with Sophie Harris following up her first race as a club member last Saturday with (17:12). Julia Wedmore ran 19:08.

Saturday afternoon saw half a dozen racing at the Aldershot track and field open meeting where the wind against the final bend and home straight made a mockery of any attempts at fast times and tactical racing became the order of the day.

It meant the times clocked by Lea Adamson (18:06.2), Joe Fenwick (16:02.9) and Ben Paviour (16:51.2) in the 5,000m races and then Fiona de Mauny (4:55.9), Chris de Mauny (5:00.3) and Poppy Craig McFeely (4:49.8) in the 1,500m were worth a lot faster than these results would otherwise suggest.

Later in the day at the Trafford BMC Grand Prix meeting, Saskia Millard was chasing a European U23 women’s GB team 5,000m qualifying time, a target also made more challenging by the Manchester weather. Her season’s opener of 16:48.19 proved to be an early marker to be improved on next time out. It was a very encouraging first track race of the year after a winter of rehabbing from an injury sustained at the end of last summer at the British Championship.



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