JULIAN MANNING produced another storming victory in the Portsmouth Coastal Half Marathon on Sunday.
He managed to get clear of defending champion Dan Bailey to take the victory in 1hr 15min 37sec.
Richard Johnstone came from nowhere to take second place with his 1.16.22 chip time good enough to see him edge the position.
He started a bit further back down the field and crossed the line behind Victory athlete Bailey who finished in 1.16.38.
Victory had a good day with Paul Mitchinson fourth in 1.17.42 and David Howard fifth in 1.18.51.
Great Britain international age-group triathlete Neil Collins finished sixth in 1.19.25.
Defending champion Emma Jolley, representing Baffins Fitclub, finished first lady with a time of 1.26.52, ahead of Lucy Morrison who was second as she finished in 1.32.13.
Jolley continued her brilliant start to the year after also winning the Chilly Hilly Cross Country in January.
Organiser Rob Piggott was delighted with the success of the 2017 half marathon.
He praised the marshals and supporters for turning out in great numbers to back the runners all the way around the excellent course.
‘I think it was a brilliant race,’ said Piggott.
‘It was a tad chilly on the eastern side into the wind but the course was in good shape.
‘Julian Manning is a machine, I was on the lead bike and I couldn’t keep up with him. He overtook me when I was cycling around the muddy beach.
‘Then I didn’t manage to catch him again until we got to the Portsmouth Watersports Centre.
‘He is in some superb form and so is Emma Jolley, she ran really well.
‘Hats off to all the marshals, they stood for a long time in the cold.
‘I was really impressed with how much support we had around the course, even on the quieter sections like Milton Common.
‘We’re very thankful to all our volunteers and helpers, as well as all the runners.
Manning led Denmead to the team prize as well, while many athletes set personal bests, ran for charity, or managed to complete the distance for the first time.
Piggott added: ‘Denmead Striders had good runners out, they obviously wanted a trophy in the cabinet and why not go for it?
‘The race medal was our biggest and one of the designers from the HMS Queen Elizabeth got in touch to say they really like it and would like to present one to the ship.
‘After the race we had a good set from singer Lily Garland at the Pyramids Centre, she’s a great local talent.’
Next up for Believe & Events is the St David’s Day race, on Wednesday, March 1 (7pm). This is the first part of the 2017 Patron Saint’s Series.