Sheffield relay runners inspired by South Yorkshire greats aim to set Masters records

A group of Sheffield runners inspired by two brilliant South Yorkshire middle-distance athletes are aiming to set a record themselves.

Monday, 7th June 2021, 10:26 am

Nick Duggan from Sheffield Running Club is one of a team from the club who aim to set a new Masters record for the 4 x 800m relay.

He said: “Nearly four decades ago, in August 1982, the Great Britain athletics team set a new world record in the 4 x 800m relay of 7 minutes 03.9 seconds.

“At the heart of that team were two of South Yorkshire's finest athletes - Peter Elliot from Rotherham and Seb Coe from Hallamshire Harriers.

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Sheffield Running Club member Nick Duggan, left, Mike Quinn and Les Morton

“Elliot was the ferocious front runner who would throw down the gauntlet to his rivals on the first lap and Coe the silky smooth athlete whose 800m world record stood for 16 years.

"They were joined on that day by Gary Cook and Steve Cram, setting a world record which wasn't surpassed until 2006, and still stands as the British record today.”

Nick added: “On Wednesday, July 9 there will be a 4 x 800m event in Sheffield. Elliot and Coe's time is not under threat but there will be record attempts in some of the Masters age categories.”

Runners Chris Ireland and Jed Turner from Sheffield Running Club

Nick is one of a group of over-65s from Sheffield Running Club, along with Mike Quinn, Rob Pearson and Les Morton, who are out to set an inaugural British record in the M65 category, targeting a time of under 12 minutes.

“Les is another of Sheffield's top athletes, having competed in the 50km race walk at the Olympic Games in Seoul and Barcelona,” said Nick.

"In addition, an over-60s Great Britain team will be attempting to beat the world record of 9.30.92 set by an American quartet in Jacksonville USA in 2015.

“Colin Bates from Dartford and Paul Forbes from Edinburgh will be joined by two Sheffield athletes, Jed Turner and Chris Ireland, to make the attempt.”

The race will be at Woodbourn Road track, with a total of eight teams of all ages competing at the evening meet.

Sadly, because of Covid restrictions, it’s not possible to watch the runners in action.