The sun shines through as Surrey Half returns

MORE than 1,300 people put on their running shoes to complete the three races of the Mercer Surrey Half Marathon event on Sunday.

There were 924 finishers in the half marathon itself, with 181 people of all ages taking part in the five-kilometre race and 284 in the two-kilometre kids’ event.

Runners in the half marathon race get under way

All the races set off from Woking Leisure in fine weather, with the longer race taking a mix of athletic club and fun runners out to Jacobs Well and back, mainly on country roads that were closed for the occasion.

Many entrants were sponsored to raise money for a variety of charities, and three schools were delighted with the money they made from pupils, parents and teachers taking part.

Halstead Preparatory School in Horsell – which sponsored the kids’ run – had raised more than £1,300 at the start of this week for Quest Riding for the Disabled, with donations still being collected.

The school entered around 30 children for the kids’ run and a team of staff and parents took on the half marathon.

Competitors set off on the 5k run

Halstead headteacher Sharon Maher, who was one of the runners, commented: “Thank you to everyone involved in the planning and organisation of the Mercer Surrey Half Marathon. It was a privilege to see the Woking community come together and support all the runners, young and old.”

Pupils, parents and teachers from Knaphill Federation of Schools – including headteacher Joanna Concannon – raised around £2,000 including Gift Aid through their sponsored runs.

The money will help buy laptops for pupils and refurbish the junior school library.

Emily Chapman parent teacher association secretary for the schools, the village juniors and the lower school, said: “All the kids were amazing in their runs and we were really well supported by our families and other spectators around the course.”

It was Emily’s first half marathon run, which she completed in two hours eight minutes. Her daughter Isla, 9, ran the kids’ race in 14 minutes and six seconds.

Kids’ run entrants approaching the finish

First runner over the line in the half marathon, and also the overall winning male, was Ben Goddard of Woking Athletic Club in a time of 1 hour 10 minutes 43 seconds. He was followed by Duncan Woolmer of Walton AC, the top male over 40s runner, in 1.5.10 and Thomas Webb of North Herts Road Runners in 1.14.59.

The overall winning female was Emily Jeanes of Trent Park Running Club in 1.23.32. The first over-40, Becky Atkinson of Maidenhead Athletic Club was second in 1.25.46 and Miki Neant of London City Runners third female overall and third over-40 in 1.27.39.

Three senior men took the first three places in the 5k, Michael Wilson of Sunderland Harriers winning in 15 minutes 39 seconds, Jonathan Parr of Fairlands Valley Spartans second in 16.18 and Connor Trerise of Woking AC third in 17.11.

In the female section of the 5k, Rebecca Curtis-Hall was first across the line in 20.37, followed by two under-15 girls who topped their class – Millie Wall on 21.07 and Rhiannon Howard in 23.00.

Jacob Bowyer was overall first in the kids’ run, winning in 7.42, with Daniel Hartmann second in 7.49 and Rory Barr third in 7.54.

The fastest girl wasScarlett Redding in 8.48, followed by Emma Joiner and Leah Naafs Torajada, both in 8.53.

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