Lucy Reid at Battersea Park 2023

Record Battered At Battersea

UK rankings revised as top club athletes battle at Battersea...

A women's course record and the fastest men's and women's times in the UK this year were the lead stories from a blistering Battersea Park at the Friday Night Under The Lights Christmas 5 Miles on 15 December 2023.

Lucy Reid (Tonbridge AC) last won this event in 2021 when she set the course record (26:26) and the fastest UK time. Last Friday night she improved her personal best and course record by 23 seconds to 26:03 to go to the top of the UK rankings, lighting up Battersea Park with her PB smile (pictured above).

Runner-up Dani Chattenton (Milton Keynes Distance Project, 26:23 PB) – the defending champion – blitzed her previous best by 82 seconds to leap up to third in the UK rankings. Lilly Coward (Aldershot, Farnham & District, 26:45) made an impressive debut in this event for third place.

The men's race was almost as fast but Mahamed Mahamed's 2021 course record (23:20) narrowly survived the onslaught. Roger Poolman (Highgate Harriers, 23:25 PB) was competing in his backyard and took full advantage to set the UK's leading time, dragging Seyfu Jamaal (London Heathside, 23:26 PB) to the second fastest time this year in a thrilling sprint finish. Oscar Bell (Herts Phoenix AC, 23:34 PB) was just eight seconds in arrears for third place, enjoying a dramatic two-and-a-half-minute improvement to his personal best.

Friday Night Under The Lights races are supported by SOAR Running, UK Endurance Conference, and Race Timing Solutions as a club racing event for aspiring club runners. The race series is normally held over a 5K course but every December there is a one-off event at five miles.

The races are promoted by five-times World Cross Country Championships representative Ben Noad, of Highgate Harriers, and leading coach and team manager Keith Scofield (Hercules Wimbledon) who organises the UK Endurance Conference. Both are committed to raising endurance running standards and are obviously succeeding in their aim.

The next Friday Night Under The Lights 5K race is on 16 February 2024 and details of the series are available at the official website here.

Results and previous reports are at the runABC South race listing here.

Photo of Lucy Reid courtesy of Friday Night Under The Lights 5K on X

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