Bury Athletic Club runners have been getting themselves ready for the winter season with a series of fine performances on the road.

Sophie Whittaker and Katie Geelan showed that Bury’s female athletes will be strong contenders this season by being the first two finishers in last weekend’s Heaton Park parkrun over 5km.

Whittaker, who has had a superb summer, culminating in representing England at an international mountain running event, just edged out her teammate with a time of 19:44 to Geelan’s 19:54. Although slightly outside their personal bests, the runs showed strong form for this time of year and suggest a great season in prospect for both.

Fifth female home was Lizzie Cheshire with a time of 22:07.

In the same event, Luke Harreld was third across the line in 17:52 with Giles Bennett 12th in 19:14 while his son Alex recorded a time of 20:59. Dave Flood ran the course in 22:40.

At the more challenging Leverhulme Park parkrun event, Ben Forrest ran a personal best of 20:19, which bodes well for the under 13 athlete this winter.

Iestyn Rimmer has shown considerable improvement, taking his personal best down to 21:29. Ben’s father Duncan continues to return fro injury with a time of 22:56 while Dave Carroll showed amazing dedication, completing the 5km in 23:14 despite landing back in the country at 5am that morning!

In other action, Harry Stainton ran 18:43 for second under-17 male in the August Sale Sizzlers 5km race.

Stainton is another athlete who has improved tremendously in the past year and this run shows that he is also ready to peform well when the winter season starts.

Bury AC’s first action of the winter is the North West Road Relays at Woodbank Park, Stockport on Saturday, September 13.