Cubert once again delivered perfect conditions for the six hundred runners who lined up in the village centre on a warm summer's evening for the start of the Cubert 5 mile road race - round seven of the Cornwall Grand Prix Series, sponsored by Cornwall Glass and Glazing.
The initial charge was led by a holiday making visitor Guy Smith (Swansea Harriers AC), which was hardly surprising for a 1.52.72 800 metre specialist, and Smith soon opened a one hundred metre gap over his pursuers.
The chasing pack was led by Tony Brewer (Mile High, pictured), Justin Thomas (Cornwall AC) and Dan Rodgers (Launceston Road Runners), with Rodgers finding the pace a little too fast and dropping back after two miles.
Brewer and Thomas, running side by side, gradually closed the gap on the Welsh leader, passing him at three miles.
Brewer timing his bid for victory to perfection, surged at the four mile point, soon finding himself forty metres clear of the Cornwall AC runner and holding this lead to the finish line, sprinting home in twenty six minutes ten seconds, with Thomas, chased down and passed in the last one hundred metres, by a very fast finishing Smith and losing out on the runner's up prize by two seconds.
A couple of top performances worthy of note came in the Veteran 50-54 age group, won by the Cornwall AC runner Dave Buzza (8th), who finished one position and eleven seconds ahead of training partner Chris Harry (9th). Their times propelled the athletes to first and second places in the 2013 UK 5 mile Rankings for this age category.
The Men's team prize made it's way west to the home of Cornwall AC (64 points), with Newquay Road Runners (97 points) continuing to show signs of a recent resurgence in form, finishing second and comfortably clear of third placed St Austell Running Club (155 Points).
The Ladies race proved a personal triumph for Cornwall AC's Emma Stepto, who won for the third time in the last four years, improving her previous 5 mile personal best by seventeen seconds, clocking 27 minutes 46 seconds, which currently ranks her number four in the UK's overall standings for this distance and the UK number one in her Veteran age group.
With Junior International Annabel Gummow (Bristol and West) forced to drop out of her second successive race due to a recurring injury problem, Emma and last year's winner Miranda Heathcote ran together for the first mile, before the Cornwall AC marathon international gradually increased the pace, pulling ahead to win by well over a minute from Miranda, with Heidi Tregenza (Cornwall AC) improving all the while in third place, although a little frustrated at failing to dip under thirty minutes by just three seconds.
After the race Emma said: "I struggled a little finishing second in the Poole 10K a couple of days ago and was a little disappointed to run 35 minutes 47 seconds behind the Kenyan Perendis Lekepana. After Poole, I didn't really expect to run a personal best at Cubert but started sensibly, not being tempted to chase the faster men and this tactic certainly seemed to work for me. I think maybe I have learnt a lesson here."
What does it take to race at this level. Well perhaps one of Emma's secrets was revealed at Cubert and just maybe, it's all in the genes because the Ladies 65-69 age group winner was Jackie Jenkin or to put it another way, Emma's Mum. "She asked me to put together a training programme in December and last night was her first proper race," added Stepto. "I am so proud of her."
Emma, the Cornwall AC Ladies team captain, was also very proud of her team, who won the Ladies team prize very easily, with their six scoring runners in the top fifteen positions, scoring a total of 45 points The host club, Newquay Road Runners (134 points), following in the footsteps of the club's Men's team, finished second, with Cornwall AC's 'B' team (150 points) packing well in third place.
The Cubert race also included the second round of the Under 20 competition, with the top three males all showing great promise, finishing well inside the top fifty.
They were led home in twelfth place overall by Gareth Smith (Newquay Road Runners), comfortably ahead of Steven Sims (East Cornwall Harriers), with Ben Hicks (Mount's Bay Harriers) in third place.
Falmouth Road Runners fielded thirty two runners in this very competitive race, with Richard Dalton running strongly and finishing a very creditable eighteenth in the Men's race.
Nick Hayden (42nd) also crept into the top fifty, helping the Falmouth's Men's team to eighth place in the team standings. The Ladies were below full strength on this occasion but Tammy Jenkin flew the flag for Falmouth, finishing sixteenth, which would have got her comfortably into the 'A' team of five of the top six clubs.
KEY FOR CLUBS
BR Bude Rats, BRR Bodmin Road Runners, CAC Cornwall AC, CR Carn Runners, ECH East Cornwall Harriers, HR Hayle Runners, LRR Launceston Road Runners, MBH Mounts Bay Harriers, MH Mile High, NRR Newquay Road Runners, SH Swansea Harriers, STA St Austell Running Club, TRC Truro Running Club, TT Tamar Trotters, U Unattached.
RESULTS Men: 1 Tony Brewer MH 26.10, 2 Guy Smith SH 26.18, 3 Justin Thomas CAC 26.20, 4 Dan Rodgers LRR 26.30, 5 Neil Eddy MBH 26.34, 6 Colin Snook CAC 26.48, 7 Ken Walker NRR 26.52, 8 Dave Buzza CAC 27.05, 9 Chris Harry CAC 27.16, 10 Mike Birchmore NRR 27.18. Age Categories: Under 20: 1 Gareth Smith NRR 27.26, 2 Steven Sims ECH 28.10, 3 Ben Hicks MBH 28.46. Under 35: 1 Tony Brewer, 2 Guy Smith, 3 Dan Rodgers. 35-39: 1 Justin Thomas, 2 Colin Snook, 3 Ken Walker. 40-44: 1 Jez Mancer STA 28.11, 2 Darren Orchard NRR 28.30, 3 Darren Varker STA 28.38. 45-49: 1 Paul Whear CR 28.12, 2 Tony Dunn CAC 28.19, 3 Stephen Hands STA 28.31. 50-54: 1 Dave Buzza, 2 Chris Harry, 3 Mark Omori MBH 28.31. 55-59: 1 John Telford CAC 29.35, 2 Steve Baker TT 30.09, 3 Neville Witham CAC 32.05. 60-64: Geoff Letchford MBH 30.52, 2 Philip Box LRR 36.37, 3 Richard Morton TT 37.31. 65-59: 1 Brian Wiles LRR 33.40, 2 Doug Alsop STA 35.17, 3 Pat Lockett NRR 35.24. 70-74: 1 Stewart Townend HR 38.10, 2 Norris Kington CAC 44.08. 75+: 1 Peter Mander LRR 43.21, 2 Howard Haynes HR 44.23. Teams: 1 Cornwall AC 'A' 64 points, 2 Newquay Road Runners 97 points, 3 St Austell Running Club 155 points, 4 Hayle Runners 177 points, 5 Mounts Bay Harriers 237 points, 6 Cornwall AC 'B' 247 points.
Ladies: 1 Emma Stepto CAC 27.46, 2 Miranda Heathcote NRR 29.03, 3 Heidi Tregenza CAC 30.03, 4 Jasmine Finney BR 32.06, 5 Mhairi Saville MBH 32.09, 6 Carol Randall MBH 32.32, 7 Donna Raggett CAC 32.37, 8 Jenny Almey CAC 32.42, 9 Revis Crowle ECH 32.42, 10 Jessica Buscombe STA 33.24. Age Categories: Under 20: 1 Caitlin Mulroy CAC 35.59, 2 Martha Carlisle CAC 36.49, 3 Jess Behennah ECH 37.06. Under 35: 1 Heidi Tregenza, 2 Jasmine Finney, 3 Jenny Almey. 35-39: 1 Mhairi Saville, 2 Kathryn Burgess CAC 33.34, 3 Wendy Chapman TRC 33.53. 40-44: 1 Emma Stepto, 2 Miranda Heathcote, 3 Carol Randall. 45-49: 1 Nancy Hill MBH 34.06, 2 Karen Harrison CAC 34.51, 3 Kathy Elliott NRR 36.22. 50-54: 1 Revis Crowle, 2 Julie Towers LRR 36.24, 3 Jayne Angilley CAC 36.53. 55-59: 1 Pat Coates NRR 37.17, 2 Ann Senior HR 41.41, 3 Diane Warren HR 42.55. 60-64: 1 Susan Mellis STA 42.46, 2 Sandy Jamieson CR 44.05, 3 Maggie Tagney STA 45.32. 65-69: 1 Jackie Jenkin U 47.42, 2 Lisa Wright NRR 48.34, 3 Carole Drew CR 50.22. 1 Timothea Cardell HR 45.58, 2 Val Hawken NRR 56.27. Teams: 1 Cornwall AC 'A', 2 Newquay Road Runners 3 Cornwall AC 'B'