Sunday saw the running of the penultimate 2012 Grand Prix event, the Blackhill Bounders -organised Gibside Fruitbowl Trail Race.
The race is a fantastic six -mile-ish run through the Gibside Estate near Rowlands Gill, incorporating tracks, paths, a muddy section and some steep hills. It’s easy to see why this race sells out every year, and the general consensus among the 16 Harriers who took part, is that this is one of the best North East races.
Bruce Crombie put in the performance of the weekend to finish a brilliant fifth of the 413 competitors and was followed home by Mark Doctor and Cris Atwell.
For the women, Mel Steer was first Harrier home, just pipping Maureen Bartrum, with Mairi Campbell in third.
The race also saw another battle royale between Phil Lee and Phil Baston, and it was also nice to see Gay and Richard Eastoe once again travel from Cumbria to take part in a local event.
Results: 5-Bruce Crombie 36.44; 124-Mark Doctor 46.31; 127-Cris Atwell 46.42; 179-David Bartrum 49.06; 192-Kim Bronze 49.35; 204-Phil Lee 50.11; 205-Phil Baston 50.13; 212-Mel Steer 50.38; 214-Maureen Bartrum 50.45; 253-Mairi Campbell 52.37; 313-Dave Coates 56.12; 323-Carol Davison 56.46; 333-Morag Donoghue 57.16; 356-Gay Eastoe 59.17; 358-Richard Eastoe 59.24; 376-Ron McCormack 61.59.
The day before, three Harriers warmed up by taking part in the Newcastle Parkrun.
Cris Atwell prepared for next week’s Town Moor Marathon finishing first of the three in this 5k event.
Phil Lee and Phil Baston locked horns once again, with Phil Lee reversing the positions from two weeks ago. Results: 98-Cris Atwell 21.52; 107-Phil Lee 22.32; 131-Phil Baston 23.25.