Shaun Antell retains Alby's Memorial Braunton 10 title
SHAUN ANTELL took on the hills, the elements and his training partners to conquer Alby's Memorial Braunton 10.
North Devon Road Runners' ten-mile road race is renowned for its demanding terrain and that is where Antell had the edge.
The Barnstaple athlete never looked back after stealing a march on Bideford AAC's Mark Jenkin and Steve Gallienne during the first big climb.
That break came in the first three miles and the last three proved even tougher in a strength-sapping head wind.
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By then, Antell, of Bristol and West AC, had moved clear and was well on his way to retaining the title.
His winning time of 55mins 21secs was more than a minute ahead of Jenkin who pulled away from Gallienne for a comfortable second place.
Ronnie Richmond, who has also been training with the top three finishers, had a strong run to take fourth for the host club.
There was an equally dominant display of front-running in the women's race, where Helen Dyke, of Poole Runners, triumphed by more than two minutes. The former Bideford athlete seems to relish the Braunton course and her time of 1-06-18 secured a third consecutive victory.
Isobel Wykes, of Truro, claimed second and the local challenge was led by Lucy Goodman, of South Molton Strugglers, in third.
Goodman is improving all the time and, despite the blustery conditions, her time of 1-11-39 was more than two and a half minutes faster than last year.
Almost 200 runners crossed the finish line at the athletics track, many using the race as key winter training for a spring marathon or half marathon.