TWO of Hercules Wimbledon Athletic Club’s intrepid long-distance runners are celebrating after racing 50km to the Sussex sea front.

Felix Allen and Max Dew were well placed in the ultra-marathon trail race from Christ’s Hospital School, Horsham to Hove. The course was very hilly, with more than 700m of climbs including crossing the South Downs, but the Hercules Wimbledon pair rose to the challenge and finished sixth and seventh out of almost 400 runners in four hours seven minutes 33 seconds and 4:14:35, respectively.

They both improved on their performances on their debut in the testing event last year. Then, Dew finished fifth in 4:21:09, three months before he completed the Self Transcendence 24-hour track race in Battersea Park. Allen also significantly improved on his time for the course of 4:40:25 in finishing 19th last year.

Allen, who became a supervet on Tuesday (May 24), when he turned 50, is no stranger to tough races. Two years ago, he raced up a tower block in the City of London, while in 2017 he won the Polar marathon in Greenland in sub-zero temperatures. The same year he also ran a marathon in the sweltering heat of Senegal in Africa. So, compared with these previous challenges, the race to Hove was a relative doddle for him.

At the other end of the age range, some of Hercules Wimbledon’s younger athletes were battling to second team spot in their opening Ebbisham Boys League meeting of the season at Kingston. Teenager Elliott Turbin had a busy time gaining valuable points in winning the Under-15 boys high jump (1.50m) and 300m (39.1 seconds) and finishing runner-up in the 100m in 12.6, the same time as the winner.

Hercules Wimbledon gained maximum points in the Under-13 and Under-15 1,500m. Noah Fernandes and George Macklin won the Under-13 races while Sam Dyson and Harry Allen emulated the feat in the Under-15 events.

Sam O’Connell gained valuable points winning the Under-15 discus and javelin with throws of 21.68m and 25.16m, respectively.

Charlie Eastaugh was the fastest of five Hercules Wimbledon runners in action in the Tracksmith Amateur Mile races on the London Community Track in Queen Elizabeth Park, Stratford, built as the warm-up track for the 2012 Olympics. Battling windy conditions, Eastaugh was third in his race in 4:11.56 with Andrew Penney fourth in a personal best of 4:13.63 and Ed Mallett 11th.

After the early pacemaker, Australian Olympic runner Nick Wallis dropped out at 600m, Eastaugh found himself in front. “I had to take it on because no one else wanted to. I held on for the third lap on my own in the wind until I was outkicked,” said Eastaugh. He was passed by John Sanderson (Guildford and Godalming) and Josh Carr (Thames Hare and Hounds) who clocked 4:09.53 and 4:10.10, respectively.

Hercules Wimbledon’s Matilde Lomba and Bettina Urlbauer were sixth and seventh in the women’s race.

Eastaugh was in action again two days later in the Irish Milers Meet in Belfast when he finished eighth out of 13 runners over 1,500m in 3:48.61, his fastest time this year.

Eastaugh will be aiming to go faster when he competes in Hercules Wimbledon’s 1,500m Night of Racing at Wimbledon Park next Wednesday (June 1). Almost 50 Hercules Wimbledon runners are among more than 150 entered for the event. Other leading Hercules Wimbledon runners entered include Jonny Cornish, Fred Slemeck, Gina Galbraith, Andrew Penney, and Thomas Whorton. The programme of more than a dozen 1,500m races starts at 6.30pm.

Surrey Under-17 high jump silver medallist Mabel-Rose Scales is among more than 30 Hercules Wimbledon athletes competing in the SLAN Maytime open meeting at the David Weir Leisure Centre, Carshalton, on Saturday (May 28).