Trophy time at Matlock AC as Sheldon and Atkinson bask in grand prix glory

Senior Grand Prix winner Andy Sheldon (left) receives his plaque from the club's captain, Colin Davenport.
Senior Grand Prix winner Andy Sheldon (left) receives his plaque from the club's captain, Colin Davenport.

It was trophy time at Matlock Athletics Club on Sunday when more than 40 members attended the annual seniors’ presentation evening at the Red Lion in Birchover.

Pride of place went to the winners of the club’s senior grand prix series, which comprise a variety of races in fell, cross-country and road running.

The men’s prize went to Andy Sheldon, who beat Peter Wilmot into second, with Andy Mellor third. The women’s competition was won by Andrea Atkinson, with Alison Pye the runner-up and Jan Forrester third.

There were also awards for the winners of the club’s 10k handicap series, a graded collection of six monthly races, which proved very popular, attracting 39 athletes. The winner was Mike Blair, with Les Thurston second and John Thorpe third. A prize for the winning time in the ladies’ race was won by Emma Machin.

The event also saw lifetime membership awarded to Ian Milne and Andy Whittaker for their outstanding contributions to the club over many years, while chairman Craig Allen thanked the committee for all their efforts, particularly Jim Thorneycroft, Colin Davenport and Alison Pye for their tireless work in organising team events and motivating club members. Incidentally, those at the party included a remarkably fresh John Brennan, even though he had tackled the Greater Manchester Marathon earlier in the day, clocking a time of three hours, 37.50 minutes.

Meanwhile Blair showed that he was no fool on April 1 when he whizzed round Queen’s Park in Chesterfield for the latest No Walk In The Park 5k. His time of 17.18 minutes narrowly missed second place by five seconds, while Tessa Jackson also had a good run to finish third lady veteran over-60 in 27.50.

On the same day, Ian Phillips recorded 16.58 at Markeaton Park, Derby to take first place in only his second parkrun in a field of 389 competitors, while Alex Currie produced a brilliant performance to finish fourth in the U11s’ race at the second round of the National Fell Running Championships, organised by Holmfirth Harriers Athletics Club in Yorkshire. Brother Joe Currie would normally have taken part too, but he was saving himself for the East Midlands Mini-Marathon Trial at Leicester the following day when he won the U13 boys’ race to qualify for the mini-London Marathon later this month.

Several Matlock athletes took on the second round of the Dark And White Peak Trail Running Series at Bradfield, near Sheffield. First home after a scenic route of 15.1k, comprising mixed terrain of tracks, paths and bridleways, was Hayley Gill in one hour, 20.50 minutes, followed by Alison Pye in 1.26.42 and Mark Jackson in 1.32.13.