Hercules Wimbledon AC round-up: Plenty of PBs set in 3,000m Night of Races

Wednesday night saw the Hercules Wimbledon 3,000m Night of Races christen dozens of new personal bests on a night of fast racing in Wimbledon Park.
The new marks started in race one of the night with Niamh Thompson taking 50 seconds off her previous best to finish second in 10:05.93, the 47th fastest time by an U23 in the UK this year. Freia Harper-Tee, making her debut over the distance is now the 22nd fastest in her U15 age group thanks to her eighth place finish in 10:28.80. It saw her equal Isabella Harrison’s club age-group record.
Otelia Garcia-Davis, finished one place behind, her 10:32.80 ranking her 26th in the same age group.
Fellow U15 Sam Dyson continued the theme with a 9:29.84 clocking in race three, good enough for third and 21st on the UK rankings.
Hercules can claim a strong set of junior athletes and Theo Creed in race four continued the momentum. Again finishing third, his 9:08.61 time is sixth in the country, demolishing the previous U15 club record by 15 seconds.
Race six saw a whole host of personal best performances. Sam Todd in finishing 12th edged Chris McIlroy, the pair finished in 8:53.52 and 8:54.55 respectively to both dip under the nine minute barrier for the first time.
U20 Jack Hobden fellow a fraction short but moved closer thanks to a 9:02.48 clocking in the same race.
Benjy Street’s previous best had seen him edge that barrier last summer but he has improved remarkably. In race seven Street ran away from a deep field to win in 8:36.44. His time is good enough for seventh on the club’s all-time list for U20s. Eoin Brady, finishing seventh in the same race took almost 17 seconds off his previous best to finish in 8:42.33.
As has become customary at these Wimbledon Park nights, a hugely competitive elite field was assembled, with the final race featuring two Hercules athletes. Toby Cooke and Charlie Eastaugh finished within a whisker of each other to move ninth and 10th on the club all-time list in 8:10.05 and 8:10.14 respectively.
Cooke has run faster for his previous club Winchester but Eastaugh has now twice bettered his 3,000m best this year, running 8:13.97 in Boston, USA in March and now this further breakthrough.
The Hercules pair finished seventh and eighth in a race won by Scotsman Andy Fyfe in 8:05.51.
Alex Milne completed a feat he described as a lifetime running goal to finish ninth in perhaps the world’s most prestigious ultra-marathon, the Comrades Marathon last week. The South African event saw athletes race from Durban on the Indian Ocean to Pietermaritzburg, 85.9km inland and many metres above.
Milne was 15th last year, when the race went in the opposite direction but bided his time superbly this time round to finish in 5:36.51, reaching halfway in 67th position and only entered the top 10 in the last 6k.
Charlie Wyllie will compete in the British Championships 1,500m on June 28. The event acts as the Paris Olympic trials for GB, with Wyllie invited due to his outstanding season so far, one which sees him ranked 60th in the country in the event.

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