Big wins for Davies and Osman at Great Bentley Half-Marathon

Helen Davies, who won the women's title at the Great Bentley Half-Marathon in impressive style on Su

Helen Davies, who won the women's title at the Great Bentley Half-Marathon in impressive style on Sunday, smashing her own course record. Picture: SIMON HOWLETT - Credit: Archant

Helen Davies and Ramadan Osman blasted around a fast, flat 13.1-mile course, in excellent running conditions, to post fine individual victories at the annual Great Bentley Half-Marathon on Sunday.

Ramadan Osman, who blasted to victory at the Great Bentley Half-Marathon. Picture: JOHN HYLAND

Ramadan Osman, who blasted to victory at the Great Bentley Half-Marathon. Picture: JOHN HYLAND - Credit: Archant

An in-form Davies, of Ipswich JAFFA, confirmed her superb current fitness by winning the ladies’ title in a terrific 1hr 12mins 49secs, in her build-up to April’s Brighton Marathon, where she will be gunning for a hat-trick of titles.

Davies was actually ninth overall, from a strong field at Great Bentley, and was the leading veteran from any age group.

In the process, the 39-year-old smashed her own course record (1:15:51), which she had set on her way to victory last year, by more than three minutes.

In fact, Davies was only 14 seconds adrift of her life-time best, which was set back in 2012 when she was at the height of her powers, having competed in the marathon at the European Championships (in Barcelona) and Commonwealth Games (in Delhi) just two years earlier.

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Last Sunday was her third-fastest ever half-marathon, just behind her 1:12:35 set at Bath, and her 1:12:40 posted at Tunbridge Wells, both in early 2012.

Meanwhile, Osman led home a bumper field of 666 athletes in a scorching time of 1hr 08mins 53secs, so eclipsing his previous best set on his way to victory at the Colchester Half Marathon (1:09:36) last March.

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In fact, Osman was only 47 seconds adrift of the course record, which was established by Kent AC’s James Connor (1:08:06) following his win in 2010.

The Eritrea-born athlete, who competes in the under-23 age group and runs for Colchester Harriers, was seventh in the senior race (and first under-23) at the Essex County Cross Country Championships at the start of the year.

Ben Carpendale, of Felixstowe Road Runners, enjoyed a terrific run in second spot, slicing nearly a minute off his personal best. He was also a runner-up at last year’s event (in 1:13:17).

Carpendale stopped the clock at 1:10:07, eclipsing his previous best of 1:11:01 set at Peterborough last October. He finished just three seconds ahead of third-placed Ryan Prout (Brentwood RC).

The top five was completed by Chris Burgoyne (1:10:45), of Springfield Striders, and David Green (1:10:54), of the host club Great Bentley RC.


Top 30 men: 1 R Osman (Col/Harr) 1:08:53; 2 B Carpendale (Felixstowe RR) 1:10:07; 3 R Prout (Brentwood) 1:10:10; 4 C Burgoyne (Springfield Striders) 1:10:45; 5 D Green (Gt Bentley RC) 1:10:54; 6 O Cima (Brentwood) 1:11:01; 7 A Manton (Springfield) 1:11:43; 8 S Ramsey (Hadleigh Hares) 1:12:44; 9 P Robinson (Springfield) 1:12:58. 10 R Reason (Harwich Runners) 1:14:12.

11 T Gavin 1:14:27 (Felixstowe RR); 12 M Matibini (first over-40) 1:14:29; 13 S Peck (Harwich, second o-40) 1:14:34; 14 J Last (Framlingham Flyers, third o-40) 1:15:17; 15 M McKeown (Col/Harr) 1:16:35; 16 C Wayman (Benfleet)1:16:40; 17 J Gunn 1:16:42 (Col/Harr); 18 B Green (Benfleet) 1:16:53; 19 B Turley (JAFFA) 1:17:14; 20 P Wain (JAFFA) 1:17:37.

21 C Culham (Braintree & District) 1:17:46; 22 S Williams (Stowmarket Striders) 1:17:57; 23 S Parry (JAFFA, first over-50) 1:18:03; 24 A Wade (JAFFA) 1:18:04; 25 D Widdowson (Hadleigh) 1:18:14; 26 H Mizon (Witham RC) 1:18:20; 27 A Ellis 1:18:24 (Felixstowe RR); 28 P Rodgers (Col/Harr, first o-45) 1:18:40; 29 C Fiddamnan (JAFFA) 1:18:48; 30 P Preston (Col/Harr, second o-45) 1:18:57.

Also, over-45: 3 A Howlett (Framlingham) 1:19:56. Over-50: 2 D Solomon (Felixstowe) 1:19:59; 3 K Marley (Col/Harr) 1:24:11. Over-55: 1 C Ridley (Col/Harr) 1:23:31; 2 N Rankin (Benfleet) 1:25:17. Ov-60: 1 O Caulfield 1:39:37; 2 M Byford (Witham) 1:41:53.

Top 20 ladies: 1 H Davies (JAFFA, first o-35) 1:12:49; 2 R Sweatt (WItham RC) 1:19:28; 3 L Thomas (JAFFA) 1:21:25; 4 S Bird (JAFFA) 1;22:20; 5 S West (JAFFA) 1:25:16; 6 N Brockbank (Springfield, first over-40) 1:25:23; 7 J Stretton (Springfield) 1:26:10; 8 L Colman (Southend, second o-35) 1:27:15; 9 M Evans (Chelmsford) 1:29:26; 10 E Drury (Sudbury Joggers) 1:29:31.

11 L Shewbridge (Col/Harr, third o-35) 1:30:06; 12 K Lovelock (Springfield) 1:30:58; 13 S Wright (Harlow) 1:31:24; 14 S Cone (Leigh-on-Sea) 1:32:19; 15 S Hughes (Braintree) 1:32:15; 16 D Harrington (Tiptree RR, second over-40) 1:32:12; 17 K Short (Brentwood, third o-40) 1:32:25; 18 R Pittman (Springfield, first o-55) 1:34:15; 19 V Hunt (Witham) 1:34:36; 20 V Jennings (JAFFA), first o-50) 1:34;51.

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