Published: 00:00, 18 October 2001
JOHN CREANE, from Hythe, gave a powerhouse display to leave his rivals in a fog at the Quest 10km road race at Ashford. The Folkestone teacher led from three km and was never threatened although Ashford AC's Anthony Webb gave his all in the final kilometre to try and reel him back.
The win gave Creane, a member of South Kent Harriers, not only the splendid men's trophy but also the Kent County AA's gold medal in his first Kent championships. Creane has inspired youngsters from his school to also take up the sport and he stayed on to cheer home his squad from the George Spurgeon School in the junior fun runs after the main race.
But it was the youngsters cheering him home to victory as Creane was unbothered by the early start and the foggy conditions to dominate the 10km race.
He was part of a group of five who set the early pace in the first kilometre and although AshfordÕs Duncan Cochrane was the first to be burned off by the hot pace Creane just stepped up the pressure to stretch the leading group. Once he hit the front after 2,500m he strode clear unchallenged building up a 20 second margin on Webb who took over as the main challenger after 4km.
Going into the final kilometre Creane was still 100m clear and he maintained a 20 second margin despite Webb's final effort to finish in a creditable 32 minutes 23 seconds.
Third was Sevenoaks' Jamie Atkinson who held off early challenger Darren Mitchell (Medway and Maidstone).
But the stunning run of the day came from the runner who storming in fifth overall.
Invicta East Kent's Charlotte Dale stunned a big field of good county runners to romp in as women's race winner in 33:31 by a massive margin setting a new personal best and a tremendous new course record.
It was one of the fastest times ever seen in Britain by a 17-year-old woman.
Dale was a worthy recipient of the Cliff Temple Award for her stunning victory by over five minutes.
The Reebok series of cross-country races is her next target with the aim of qualifying for the Great Britain team for the European and World cross-country championships this winter.
Second was Ashford AC's Helen Wheeler from Folkestone and Janice Moorekite ran her best race for two years with the former winner of the event finishing third.
Ashford's s strength in depth was enough to give them the men's s team crown and county gold with fine runs from Webb, Duncan Cochrane (5th), Russell Maddams (7th) and Kevin Williams (8th).
South Kent Harriers (Creane, Nigel Hughes, Barry Watson) took silver ahead of Medway/ Maidstone.
Ladies gold went to Invicta with Dale and Moorekite joined by Joanne Jenkins to hold off the Ashford AC trio of Wheeler, Becky Dyer (11th) and Lesley Hall (13th).