Glowing results in Golden Mile’s first summertime race

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DOZENS of runners competed at an inaugural mile-long race this weekend.

Elite runners, members of running clubs and families zipped along the promenade at Stokes Bay, near the Bayside Cabin, in Gosport.

GOTCHA! Winner of the first Gosport Golden Mile is a well-chuffed Tom Payn, 33. Picture: Sarah Standing (131478-6892)

GOTCHA! Winner of the first Gosport Golden Mile is a well-chuffed Tom Payn, 33. Picture: Sarah Standing (131478-6892)

Tom Payn, 33, earned the gold medal, followed closely behind by Kenyan Nicholas Kirui, 24.

Tom, who used to work in Portsmouth but now lives in London, trains a group of elite runners.

He holds the record for the Gosport Half Marathon.

He said: ‘It was well organised, a really nice course and we’ve got perfect weather for it, which always helps.

‘They’ve done a good job for the first one – a nice atmosphere.

‘If it continues to grow it could be a really nice race.

‘The thing about a mile race, is that pretty much anyone can do it even if you don’t train for running.’

The inaugural race was followed by a five-kilometre race, starting from the promenade shortly after 10.30am.

The races have been organised by Nick Carter from Absolute Running, in Stoke Road, Gosport.

And there were plenty of youngsters and their parents taking up the one-mile challenge. Husband and wife team Liz, 53 and Mike MacEnri, 54, are part of the Fareham Crusaders running group.

The had come down to Stokes Bay from their home in Heritage Gardens, in Portchester.

Liz enjoyed the race, although she usually runs around 10 kilometres.

She said: ‘It’s nice to do a short one, it’s different.

‘There’s only a few from Fareham running, we need more.

‘It was beautiful, the weather was just so nice.

‘It’s the first time I’ve been able to run in a short-sleeve shirt, which is really nice.

‘It’s great and lovely to see all the little ones running, as well as the elite runners at the front.’

And Lewis Banner, 21, of Sovereign Crescent, in Locks Heath, traded his usual 800 metres for the mile.

He said: ‘I just thought I wanted to have a go at a flat-out mile on the promenade.

‘I had the wind behind so we had a bit of a tail wind and it was good to have the professionals here to drag you along.’