Race Date: Wednesday 10 February to Sunday 21 February 2021
At a time when traditional road relays aren’t possible owing to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, England Athletics hosted an exciting free-to-enter virtual road relay running competition, to give runners and clubs from across the country the chance to compete against each other, with the finalists getting an opportunity to represent England in a battle against the cream of the other Home Countries. Traditionally, road relays have been the bastion of the top-end of a running club, with each club having to name their runners to compete on the day, however the virtual competition allowed everyone to have a go at beating their 5-mile PB in the hope of helping their club progress through the rounds.
The Virtual Road Relay Competition 2020/21 takes place in three rounds with each round open for a number of days in order to give flexibility to runners to complete their runs. The 50 fastest clubs in England progressed from the first round to lock horns again in the second round, with the winner moving forward to represent England against the victors from the other Home Nations. Clubs were again allowed an uncapped number of runners with the overall result calculated by the times of their fastest four men and four women.
A total of 38 Striders signed up for the second round and took on the 5-mile distance again, powering the club on to finish in a very respectable 37th place. Not first place, and therefore the end of the line for our club, but a fantastic achievement to be in the mix with the best of England. To put the result into context, we were the highest placed club from Yorkshire, beating the likes of Ilkley Harriers, Roundhay Runners and Valley Striders (both Leeds) and of course our neighbours Totley AC, who finished in 41st. So, cream of Yorkshire for us! Our other neighbours, Dronfield, again did remarkably well, finishing in 26th place, but were pipped for the Derbyshire honours by Derby AC.
In terms of individual times, aside from our magnificent eight whose times helped the club to this position, special mention should be reserved for Dot Kesterton, who finished 1st in the W65 category, Caroline Brock who finished 3rd in the W35 category and Pete Brown who finished 5th in the M60 category.
Full results from Round 2 can be found here, and a full list of Striders times are given in the table below, with the eight scoring times in bold. Well done to each and every one of you for again giving it your all for the club – it really is appreciated and gives a great sense of pride for all our members.