Charnwood AC's Gemma Steel put on a battling performance as she secured victory at Sunday's Darlington 10K. Strong winds failed to cast any significant barrier as Steel and over 1600 runners headed to the north east to compete in one of the fastest races on the circuit. As anticipated, it was tight at the top (particularly the men’s competition) yet it was two familiar faces – Tadele Geremew Mulugeta and Steel – who headed their respective fields.
The course, known to offer a prime opportunity for a late summer PB, took runners on a traffic-free, two-lap course which finished on High Row. In addition to the 10k, Sunday also saw the hundreds turn out for the Family Fun Run and Junior 3K Run.
Elswick Harriers’ Mulugeta has enjoyed a productive 2016, winning at the North Tyneside 10K and Sunderland City Half Marathon over the past six months. The 31-year-old continued his impressive form to secure victory in 31:26, just four seconds ahead of Abraham Tewelde, with Tyne Bridge Harriers’ Marc Fenwick in third (31:55).
Mulugeta, who posted a 10k time of 30:41 at North Shields in March, said that he was pleased with his performance in testing conditions: “I am happy with what I’ve done considering how windy it was.”
Steel looks to be well and truly back after her injury struggles earlier in the year with a comprehensive victory in 33:47, which also secured her 14th place overall. Steel was around a minute and a half ahead of Rosie Smith (35:05), with Mary Ferrier third (37:44). Martin Woodhead finished midpoint in the field in 54:42, while the last competitor came home in 1:38:56.
Full results are available here.