Leeds AC's Philip Sesemann and Cambridge & Coleridge's Holly Archer take victories at Lord Mayor's 5K City Centre Classic
PUBLISHED: 11:38 07 July 2019 | UPDATED: 12:36 07 July 2019
Jamie Honeywood Archant Norwich Norfolk
Leeds City AC's Philip Sesemann took victory in the Lord Mayor's 5K City Centre Classic on Saturday in 14:35.
The 26-year-old edged out Cambridge & Coleridge AC's Jonathan Escalante-Phillips (14:40) by four seconds and claim the £500 first prize money. Brighton & Hove City AC's Stephen Ferroni was third in 14:44 and Norfolk's top finisher was Piers Arnold (City of Norwich AC), whose time of 14:59 was enough to earn fifth place overall.
Cambridge & Coleridge's Holly Archer won the women's event in 16:50 with the 25-year-old proving to be in a class of her own in the female field.
CoNAC athlete Isabel Rodriguez produced a fine run to take second place in 17:44 whilst Bure Valley Harriers' Faith Viney continued her excellent year with third place in 17:58.
A total of 220 runners were due to toe the start line for the race, which is aimed at elite road racers, with 190 competitors earning the famous Lord Mayor's 5K mug as recognition they completed the event.
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The race, which takes part just before the Lord Mayor's procession, has become very popular with runners since the first staging of the event in 1996.
This year saw changes to the criteria for entry as female entrants had to demonstrate they had attained a sub 22-minute 5K to gain a place whilst the men had to have a sub 20-minute clocking since January 1, 2018.
On the day male and female runners must be through the 3K point in 12 minutes and 13:12 minutes respectively or they asked to retire from the course.
The race starts at Whitefriars and finishes in Tombland as runners tackle a tough two-lap course, which heads through Tombland, Castle Meadow, and Red Lion Street before turning at the St Stephen's roundabout.
CoNAC race co-ordinator Richard Polley was delighted how the event unfolded.
"It appears to have gone down very well with runners once again, which is obviously the most important thing," said Polley, who confirmed that only two men were unable to make the 3K cut-off from the whole field. "It's a bit like a swan in the staging of it in that there are a lot of people doing a lot of very hard work in the run-up and during the event but a lot of us said this was the most enjoyable of all.
"The racing itself was also very good - the men's leading pack were together for the first 4K before Sesemann made a break."
Sesemann's time of 14:35 was some way short of the course record of 14:11 held by Paul Evans, which was set in 2000 and Polley doubts whether that time will ever be seriously challenged again.
"It just goes to show what a great time it was," he said. "I think it would take a serious world class athlete to come and try to beat it - perhaps someone like Mo Farah. It's a record that has really stood the test of time."