Kristian Jones (Swansea Harriers) and Charlotte Arter (Cardiff AAC) were victorious at the Nos Galan Road Races on New Year’s Eve.
The 5km Elite Races are the highlight off the famous and historic event which is based in Mountain Ash near Aberdare. This year's race was attended by mystery runner Chris Coleman, the popular Manager of the Welsh Football Team.
The Nos Galan Elite Race pictured in 2015
Kristian Jones had started the race as one of the favourites, along with 2015 European Junior 5,000m champion Alex George (Gloucester AC) and Ieuan Thomas (Cardiff AAC).
Thomas had previously won in Mountain Ash, in 2012. George was third at last year's race.
It wasn't long before Jones, Thomas, George and Josh Griffiths (Swansea Harriers) broke away from the chasing group. It was clear in the closing stages however that it would be a batttle between Jones and Thomas who both set large 10km pb's at the end of 2016.
It was Jones ultimately who prevailed, adding victory and a course record of 14:11 to his course record at the Glyn Neath 5 Mile race on Boxing day. His new mark shaved 6 seconds off the previous record jointly held by Dewi Griffiths (Swansea Harriers) and Rob Bugden (Bristol & west AC).
Thomas was next home with George again finishng third. Griffiths held on to his fourth spot with Jack Goodwin (Bedford & County) pulling clear of the early chasing group to place fifth.
The ladies race also enjoyed a stronger field than it had seen for some time. Charlotte Arter again started as an outstanding favourite, competing here just weeks after representing Great Britain & Northern Ireland at the European Cross Country Championships in Sardinia.
Arter did indeed take an emphatic victory finishing agonisingly close to the sixteen minute barrier in 16.00 and lowering her own course record by a further 8 seconds.
Nicole Roberts (Birchfield Harriers) was the second lady home in 16.29 with Irish Olypian Kerry O'Flaherty in third.
Clara Evans (Pontypriddd Roadents) claimed the prize for first athlete from the Rhondda Cynon Taff area in fourth overall with Charlotte Taylor-Green (Bristol & West AC) in fifth and also finishing under seventeen minutes.
The racing had started earlier in the evening with a series of children's races. Winners included Jacob Reynolds (Cardiff AAC), Aimee Callow (Cardiff Archers), Trystan Leech (Carmarthen Harriers) and Eli Scoble (Cardiff AAC).