IT was a record turnout and a thrilling battle at the front in the annual Joan Rhodes and Fred Norris Memorial 5k in Radcliffe.

A total of 190 runners completed the multi-terrain course, which starts at Cams Lane running track and takes in part of the scenic Outwood nature trail.

In great running conditions, a close contest at the front saw Leigh Harrier Phillip Williams win in 16mins 46secs, beating Tommy Harrison, from Bolton United Harriers, by one second.

Dave Smith, also from Leigh Harriers, was third in 16:58.

Olivia Stones continued Leigh Harriers’ winning run, taking first place in the women’s race in 19:29.

Radcliffe Athletic Club’s Donna Cartwright was second in 20:46 and Paula Pilling, from Burnden Road Runners, was third in 20:55. Leigh Harriers also won the men’s team title and Burnden Road Runners claimed the women’s competition.

The race, in aid of St Ann’s Hospice, has been organised for many years by 76-year-old Radcliffe AC stalwart Jim Rhodes in memory of his wife, Joan, and Olympian and Bolton Harrier Fred Norris.

Mr Rhodes, who has run for England and Great Britain, was assisted this year by Radcliffe AC and the event was part of the Central Lancs Grand Prix race series, which boosted numbers. It also incorporated the Northern Masters Championship.

The presentation was held at the track alongside a cake sale.

A special award was also presented to Radcliffe AC president Tom West for his outstanding support of races in aid of the hospice over the last 30 years.