A 5K option was a new planned feature at the Oundle New Year 10K (Sunday 12 January) but a changed route, revised at the 11th hour was not. Everything was in place at this well-organised event until the Great British weather meant a late change of plan.
Nice Work launched the Oundle 20 Mile Road Race in 2018 and a year later, a shorter version in the form of the Oundle New Year 10K. The latter made such a successful debut that the organisers decided to include a 5K on the 2020 racecard.
The Met Office had forecast sunshine and temperatures of 9 degrees; however, it was a different story on race day thanks to heavy rain the night before followed by a sharp shower and a headwind during the event.
These downpours led to flooding near the finish and a waterlogged field forcing the organisers to move the finish line at short notice for safety reasons. They were unable to use their inflatable arch as a result and both the start and finish were moved to the car park.
Both races started at 10am with one lap for the 5K and two laps for the 10K on an attractive, mildly undulating course in and around charming villages in Northamptonshire. Most of these country roads were closed which was an added bonus.
John Herbert of Helpston Harriers won the 10K in 33:24. Hannah Oldroyd of Ribble Valley Harriers was the women’s winner in 37:41.
In the 5K, Tony Bacon of Saffron Striders RC was first across the line in 17:49. Toni Robinson of Kettering Town Harriers was the first female in 24:07.
There was an eye-catching medal for all and a prayer for dry weather at next year’s race.
Image courtesy of Sara Jane Phipps