A RECORD number of runners turned out for Worthing Striders’ Highdown Hike last Wednesday.
The four-mile fun run saw 524 athletes take to the start line, with 492 completing the race.
It was the 14th year of the race and the event has seen a gradual increase in numbers every year.
Runners were greeted with a few flashes of lightning ahead of the race but no rain fell.
This year’s run was held on a new course for the first time but it was still on Highdown. The new course was designed to minimise the short road running section and to bring together the start/finish areas, as well as to refresh the event.
The race, which is part of the West Sussex Fun Run League series, was won by Worthing Harriers Darryl Hards, who got home in 22min 59sec.
The next man across the line was Steyning Athletic Club’s Ewan Dunlop, who finished in 24-06.
In third position was Lewes’s Andrew Masters, who finished 15 seconds after Dunlop.
Worthing Harriers were celebrating once again in the women’s race.
Sarah Kingston clinched top spot in a time of 26-45.
Kim Lo, who has collected race wins at the Worthing Lido four-mile race and Arunners Beach Run already this year, had to settle for second spot this time around.
The Haywards Heath runner completed the race in 27-39.
The final podium position went to Esther Fair, who finished the race in 29-27.
Arunners and Burgess Hill Runners shared top spot with 84 points each, while Lewes AC slipped to 11th place with 74 points. That enabled Burgess Hill to move up to second place in the table, ahead of Lewes and behind current champions Arunners, who are now 29 points clear with six races remaining.
Worthing Striders club chairman Bryan Taylor was delighted with the turnout for the race and said: “It was great to see so many runners come out for the event.
“We had a record number and that just continues the fantastic statistics for the Fun Run League this year.
“In every event so far this year, record numbers have competed in the races.
“I think the athletes really enjoyed the new design of the course. We have a few areas that we would like to improve for next year but, all-in-all, it was a really enjoyable evening.
“The atmosphere was especially great and it really helped the runners reach the finishing line.”
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