A record number of entrants took on the renowned Gun Hill at the Meerbrook 15K on Saturday (30 July). A whopping 338 runners completed the event - more than double the number from 2015.
Gunning For The Finish At Meerbrook
The event always attracts a good number of participants from Staffordshire; however, this year a large percentage of entries were from runners outside the area.
Once voted the third hilliest race in the UK, the Meerbrook 15K (9.32 miles) lived up to its reputation for lung-busting climbs. It was held near Leek in Staffordshire, an area known for its undulations, so runners knew what to expect when they lined up at 10am. In particular the long, hard climb up Gun Hill, that tests the hardiest of runners!
What goes up must come down with several fast downhill sections to compensate for the hills. This scenic road race also presented runners with panoramic views of the Cheshire Plain and Jodrell Bank Observatory, thanks to the weather conditions. With a reputation for friendliness and slick organisation by Mick Hall, it remains a favourite in the NSRRA calendar.
Ben Fish of Blackburn Harriers was first across the line in 53:49, followed by Peter Speake of Wilmslow RC in 55:12. Carl Moulton of Boalloy took third place in 55:26.
There was a very strong ladies field contending for the women’s title. Hannah Oldroyd of Saltaire Striders put in a strong performance, winning in 1:03:10. Mandy Vernon of Trentham RC was second in 1:03:30, with Jenny Knass of Stockport Harriers coming third in 1:04:38.
Entries are now open for the 2017 race. For more information, visit the event website.
Photo courtesy of Mick Hall Photos.