GRAND PRIX: Former boxing champion is a knockout at Ferry Meadows

Runners in the 5K Grand Prix series at Ferry Meadows.
Runners in the 5K Grand Prix series at Ferry Meadows.
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Michael Channing and Grace Mullins picked up where they let off at Eye two weeks ago, when winning the third race of the Peterborough Grand Prix Series at Ferry Meadows.

The Nene Valley athletes now find themselves in pole position to win the series with Mullins almost assured of victory having a 100% record after three out out of five races.

The men’s race was a classic with a lead group of five running together for much of the circuit. It was down to four with one km to go, after Peterborough AC’s Phil Martin dropped off the pace.

Channing had conserved the most energy and his kick with 400m to go was too much for his rivals and the series leader crossed the line in a time of 16:18, two seconds ahead of John Pike of Peterborough AC, with Pike’s teammate Amittai Ben-Israel just a second further back in third.

Channing is rapidly improving as a racer, and the former British Universities welterweight boxing gold medallist has reserves of strength that some athletes find hard to match.

Channing said “I’m really pleased. It was a hot evening and I was surprised how comfortable I felt. I knocked three seconds of my previous best.”

Mullins led the ladies race all the way, and was a comfortable winner, crossing the line in 18:45.

Mullins has dominated the series, but admits that it’s been unexpected as she only returned to racing this summer after a lengthy injury lay off.

Ruth Jones, also of Nene Valley, claimed her third second place of the summer with a time of 19:11, her fastest run of the year. Nene Valley teenager Olivia Mead had a fine run taking third place in 19:39.

The Junior 3k race was won by Bourne Town Harrier Max James with a 10:31 clocking, while Nene Valley’s Sid O’Connell finished as runner up nine seconds further back.

Molly Peel was the first girl over the line in a time of 11:01, making it a winning double for Bourne.