Familiar winner of Dereham 10-miler as Pyatt powers home

Fastest woman Nicky Alford.

Fastest woman Nicky Alford. - Credit: Archant

Dereham Runners AC hosted its annual 10-miler with a record field of 413 competitors setting out from the race headquarters at Neatherd School.

Race winner Matt Pyatt.

Race winner Matt Pyatt. - Credit: Archant

This popular event is the fourth in the Leathes Prior Grand Prix Series and a county championship race, always popular with Norfolk runners keen to beat an intermediate distance between 10 kilometre and half marathon.

Cool but sunny weather conditions combined with a famously flat course held the promise of outstanding performances from Norfolk club runners.

Now in its 15th year, the route runs east along the old A47 towards North Tuddenham before turning onto winding country lanes around Elsing, and finally looping back to Dereham.

'It was perhaps too windy for a course record,' rued race director Neville Knights afterwards. 'Nevertheless Matt Pyatt, who won the race in 2014 and 2015, again led the field from the start today.'

Runners put their best foot forward in the Dereham 10 Miler. Picture: Dereham Runners

Runners put their best foot forward in the Dereham 10 Miler. Picture: Dereham Runners - Credit: Archant

Pyatt, a leading light in Ryston Runners, powered over the finish line in just 56.19, with Scott Walford of Bure Valley Harriers scooping second place with a time of 58.27, and Kim Bowling taking third with 59.38.

First female finisher was Nicky Alford of North Norfolk Beach Runners, whose very fast 64.34 beat off competition from team mate Charlotte Kneale (66.10) and Lydia Growns of Ryston Runners (68.53).

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Todd Lake and Guzel Sari of host club Dereham Runners also impressed, finishing in 24th and 35th position with timings of 64.01 and 65.28.

A single wheelchair racer, Peter Downing, covered the course in 83.22. The last finisher to cross the finish line at Neatherd came in at a shade over two hours.

The overall club award for U-40 males was won by Norwich Road Runners, while Ryston Runners bagged O-40 males and U-40 females and O-40 females went to Wymondham AC.

Sales of refreshments, including an array of homebaked cakes, raised £363 for the Make a Wish Foundation.

Further afield, Dereham Runner Grace Bird finished first in her age category (F20-29) at the Waveney Triathlon, in the process improving her bike time by five minutes. The short, sharp course consisted of an 400 metre swim followed by a 20k bike ride and 3.5k run, with Bird completing all three legs in just 62.19.