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Grantham Running Club race at Watermead Country Park in north Leicester

A warmer-than-average morning saw 31 members of Grantham Running Club travel to Watermead Country Park in north Leicester for the second of three parkrun meets in the club's Grand Prix schedule.

The course consisted of one loop around the John Merrick's Lake, named for a late Olympic sailer that learned his craft in the area, then two around the King Lear Lake, an artificial fishing baisen named after the monarch that is mythologically supposed to have founded the city of Leicester.

The surroundings were extremely pleasant and the largely flat course made for some great times, though the first half a kilometer is a little crowded if you don't start at the front.

Grantham Running Club travelled to Watermead Country Park
Grantham Running Club travelled to Watermead Country Park

The club certainly made an impact, taking four positions in the top 10, as well as numerous course and actual PBs, and season's best performances.

First home for the club, in third place overall, was Gavin Potter in 17:17, a PB more than a minute quicker than his previous at Yarborough in August, and just seven seconds behind the first runner home.

Next, in fourth place, was Joaquim 'Flash' Jeronimo in 17:27, who was leading the pack until he took a wrong turn and lost momentum.

Russel Whittaker came fifth in 17:32, his second fastest parkrun of the year. Samuel Jepson completed the GRC top 10 entries in 17:50, a course PB.

Daniel Pearce claimed the 17th position with a time of 19:49, a parkrun PB equalling that he'd set at Doddington the previous year and his best overall 5k time for the year.

Sam Dodwell was right behind him with 19:56, a marked return to form after an injury-troubled summer.

Hannah Whittaker was first GRC woman home, in position 25 and a time of 21:36, a season's best at parkrun by more than two minutes.

Chris Limmer achieved 29th place in 21:56, an already-decent time made even more impressive by the fact that he was also pushing son Rupert in a buggy.

Paul Davis was 35th in 22:19 (a course PB), with Richard Payne in 41st in 22:36. Rich was pleased with his time, having been plagued by sciatica for much of the year.

Nicci Whittaker was delighted with a 36 second PB, coming home in 22:52, and Stuart Baty, sans four-legged companion for once, got a course PB with 23:03.

Marj Spendlow celebrated her birthday by achiving a 33 second PB of 24:11, 49 seconds faster than her road 5k best, while Zoe Wragg did similar achieving 24:26, 15 seconds faster than her road time.

Tommy Napier was pleased to achieve a season's best and first in his age grade too with 24:30, while Jacqueline Anderson achieved a PB of 24:34.

Julie Gilbert ran on a dodgy hip, but still managed to get a course PB Of 25:03. Sylv Hull achieved a nine second parkrun PB with 25:09.

Stephen Fay was another to achieve a PB, completing his run in 26:19; not bad after 223 parkruns!

Ros Sadler also got a course PB with 27:17. Fraser Marshall also got one with 29:32, and Julia Hallam ran her fastest parkrun of year in 30:19.

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