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Personal best for Matt Griffiths in Italy

Leamington Editorial 5th Nov, 2014 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

KENILWORTH runner Matt Griffiths took part in the 29th running of the Venice Marathon in Italy on Sunday.

Despite warmer than expected weather hitting 20 degrees and a strong headwind for half of the race, Griffiths completed the course in a new personal best of 3:27:59, which was over 16 minutes quicker than his previous best set in London earlier this year. His time placed him 800th overall.

In New York Neil Smith ventured over to the ‘Big Apple’ to take part in the 2014 New York Marathon.

Smith finished 4728th in a time of 3:31:54 and the race was won by Wilson Kipsang of Kenya in 2:10:59.

On home soil, Kenilworth Runner Chris McCarthy ran a good race to win the annual 10-mile ‘Beat the Hour’ at Draycote Water on Sunday.

The race comprised two laps of Draycote water and was relatively flat but the strong winds and rain put pay to fast times on race day.

McCarthy won in a time of 56:25 while fellow Kenilworth runner Louise Andrews was pleased with her 20th overall position and 4th lady in a time of 1:10:48.

A total of 15 runners from Spa Striders also braved the conditions with Melissa Venables winning the ladies race.

Melissa ran a well-judged race and was initially sitting in second place but she gradually closed the gap on the leading lady and overtook at around the six-mile mark before pushing on to win by 44 seconds in a time of 1:08:02.

She was followed by team-mates Carolyn Wilkinson in third place in a time of 1:10:07 and Clare Hinton in fifth in a time of 1:11:33.

There were also strong performances in the men’s race too with Victor Garanto Fajo finishing third, narrowly missing out on beating the hour by finishing in 1:00:46. In total there were 119 finishers.

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