TORRENTIAL rain greeted Penarth and Dinas Runners when they opened their new season at the Lliswerry eight-mile road race Sunday.
Runners endured showers, puddles and bitterly cold winds as they took part in the flat and fast race around Newport.
The race was also the first club championship fixture of the year, giving members the chance to launch a defence of titles or make a bid for glory.
A strong turnout from the Penarth running club proved members are a hardy bunch and prepared to take part in rain or shine.
Particular mention must go to Andrea Goodfellow, who has recently had a break from running due to health issues. Having only started back running this year, Andrea had worked her way up to six miles so Sunday's run was her furthest in some time. Showing a lot of mental application, particularly in the last few miles when she was suffering, Andrea maintained her pace to finish under 1h 15m. She was buoyed by her performance and it has given her the confidence to think about doing a half marathon.
Gary Brown, who was recently crowned the men's club champion for 2013 after completing all eight of his races in first place, continued his good form to improve his personal best by two minutes (47.57).
Richard Jackson-Hookins, determined to narrow the gap, took nearly four minutes off his PB with 49.04, and Clem Clement proved his consistency with a time of 52.52.
Chris Nellins, making a return to club championship fixtures, achieved 53.39, and Ian Warburton finished strongly in 54.50.
Debbie Evans, who was the 2013 women's club champion, was the first woman home in her age category , earning a bottle of wine and a new PB (55.06).
In a very close finish, Knill Baird-Murray, producing consistent, near seven-minute miles, achieved a time of 55.12, while Chris Seal, in his first attempt at an eight-mile race, was next in 56.41.
Other times were: Paul Mitchell (57.13), Steve Cray (57.35),
Malcolm Bradley (57.36), Marc Durkin (58.23), who smashed his target of an hour and achieved a PB; Louise Hunt (58.30), second Penarth and Dinas woman home; Lisa Cleary (59.14); Andrea Hurman (1.00.34); Josh Davies (1.00.59); Lindsey Hunt, recently voted most improved woman from club, 1.02.23; Steve Goodfellow (1.02.42); Amanda Lynch (1.04.16); Danielle Rayner (1.05.43), taking nearly two minutes off her PB; Yvonne Williams (1.06.05), returning from holiday, was fifth in her age category; Sarah Pope(1.10.50), taking more than three minutes off her PB; Andrea Pace (1.11.07); Paul Furlong (1.12.27); Mandy Barrington (1.13.24); Janice Clement (1.14.31); Andrea Goodfellow (1.14.34) and Justine Cass (1.16.44).