Welsh 10k Champions crowned at Cardiff Bay
01/04/2019 00:00, In Road /
Charlotte Arter continued her excellent run of form by winning a high-class women's race at the Brecon Carreg Cardiff Bay Run on Sunday.
A strong headwind along the Cardiff Barrage section of the course may have denied Arter's bid to break Angela Tooby's 35-year-old 10K record, but the Cardiff AC athlete still destroyed the field to cross the line 27 seconds ahead of Belgium's Nine Lauwaert and Cardiff clubmate Clara Evans. The men's race saw Aldershot Farnham and District's Adam Clarke win in a time of 29:28, five seconds ahead of Cardiff AC's Jake Smith and London Marathon-bound Swansea Harrier Josh Griffiths, who finished third.
More than 6,000 runners of all abilities gathered in Roald Dahl Plass to tackle the course which took them past landmarks such as the Millennium Centre and the Norwegian Church before crossing the bay's iconic barrage. Arter lived up to her pre-race favourite's tag in the early stages, reaching the half-way stage just inside Tooby's record. Although a strong headwind meant the chance of a new Welsh record slipped away, Arter continued to dominate the field during the second half of the race.
The parkrun world record holder entered the finishing straight clear of the field and she stopped the clock in a winning time of 32.49. The win also earned Arter the Welsh 10K Championship title, with Evans claiming silver and Alaw Beynon-Thomas, of Swansea Harriers, claiming bronze.
Arter was delighted with a performance: "They were pretty tough conditions out there, especially on the last two miles, but I'm happy to come away with the win.
"It was nice to step down in distance, I've done two half marathons recently, so it was nice to test the legs over 10k. Moving into the track season now I'll start sharpening up for five and ten thousand in the summer."
Arter will now head to the United States for a Welsh Athletics training camp ahead of the summer's track season and the ultimate goal of a place at the World Athletics Championships in Doha.
"There's a group of eight of us going out to Albuquerque, with Welsh Athletics," she said. "I'm really looking forward to that and getting some hard work in for three weeks there and then getting ready for the track season after that. The 10,000m is probably my main aim this summer. I'll be trying to run the standard for the World Championships later this year."
Arter will be joined in the US by Evans, who set a big new personal best time of 33:26 in finishing third.
Evans said: "It was a bit windy on the barrage coming back, but it was pretty good and a good atmosphere. I ran a PB, so I think I'm in good form. I'm going to America with Charlotte next week for three weeks to train and then I come back for some track races and do Highgate, which is the British 10,000m champs, and we'll see where it goes from there really."
The men's race saw the late withdrawal of pre-race favourite Dewi Griffiths, who decided not to run with a cold as a precaution ahead of the London Marathon. The early pace was taken up by namesake Josh, who led a high-class group including Cardiff AC trio Jake Smith, Ieuan Thomas and Matt Clowes through the early stages. Clowes took the leaders through the 5k mark in a time of 14:38, but the Cardiff man, unfortunately, had to drop out with a hamstring problem a kilometre from the finishing line. Clarke seized the initiative and took the opportunity to pull away from the leading group and open up a decisive gap which he held until the line.
The race was also an excellent run out for third-placed Josh Griffiths, who is preparing for another assault on the London Marathon, where he was the first Briton home in 2017. Griffiths claimed the Welsh 10K Championship, ahead of Cardiff pairing Ieuan Thomas and Ciaran Lewis, who smashed his PB by a remarkable five minutes, clocking 29:48.
Griffiths said afterwards: "It was nice to race in Cardiff again. It was my first race here since the Cardiff Half. There's always big crowds, so it was a good event. It's the first time I've done it and it was really enjoyable. I felt good. This race was never my aim, it's obviously the London Marathon in four week's time, so it's a good sign four weeks out from that. I'm still ffocusedon the big one. This was a good indicator that things are going well. I just need to recover now, have another few good weeks, then ease off, and run well in a month's time."
Richie Powell won the wheelchair race in 33:18, almost 10 minutes clear of the second finisher.
Brecon Carreg Cardiff Bay Run Top 10 results
Adam Clarke (Aldershot Farnham and District) 29:28
Jake Smith (Cardiff AAC) 29:33
Josh Griffiths (Swansea Harriers) 29:34
Ieuan Thomas (Cardiff AAC) 29:35
Ciaran Lewis (Cardiff AAC) 29:48
Shaun Antell (Bideford AAC) 29:53
Jon Hopkins (Swansea Harriers) 30:07
James Hunt (Cardiff AAC) 30:18
Tom Merson (Exmouth Harriers) 30:38
Ben Cole (Tonbridge AC) 30:47
Charlotte Arter (Cardiff AAC) 32:49
Nine Lauwaert (BEL) 33:16
Clara Evans (Cardiff AAC) 33:26
Rebecca Murray (Bedford and County) 34:16
Alaw Beynon-Thomas (Swansea Harriers) 34:58
Claudia Kelsall (Milton Keynes) 36:20
Lucy Marland (Cardiff AAC) 36:25
Eilidh Bell (Team Bath AC) 36:43
Natalie Griffiths (Bristol and West AC) 36:45
I.T Price (Bristol and West AC) 37:32
The full results can be found on the Brecon Carreg Cardiff Bay Run website: https://www.cardiffbayrun.co.uk/