CORNWALL Athletic Club's International marathon runner Emma Stepto and the club's up and coming young guns stole the limelight in Sunday's Falmouth Mob Match – the traditional end of season celebration for yet another successful road running year in the Duchy.
Emma led the Ladies' race from the gun, soon mixing it with the top ten in the Men's race, eventually finishing eighth overall in a new course record of 28m4s for the tough five mile route, with the steep climbs out of Swanpool and then past the Docks slowing down even the very best.
Sixteen-year-old Issy Steele, running for the host club Falmouth Road Runners, showed what a superb up and coming talent she is, finishing second, well clear of the rest of the ladies and more than a minute ahead of another of Cornwall AC's rapidly improving Senior Ladies' third-placed Donna Raggett.
Youth certainly made its mark in the Men's race, with a trio of Cornwall AC youngsters scooping the individual honours.
Twenty-year-old Phil Wilson, a student at the University of Cornwall and based in Falmouth, set the pace and led the huge field of more than 330 runners, as the leaders passed the two-mile point, approaching Falmouth sea front, with 18-year-old Callum Jones in second-place and 17-year-old Andy Worden comfortable in third.
Jones was content to tuck in behind his training partner along the sea front and on the climb past the Docks, before making his move on a downhill section around Castle Drive, soon after the four mile mark.
Jones said: "I just hoped I had not gone too soon because I could hear Phil not far behind and I was beginning to tire into the headwind as we came back across the sea front but managed to hold on in the closing stages."
Jones won by 12 seconds from Wilson, with a delighted Worden, a 400m and 800m track specialist, showing how well his endurance training is going this winter, cruising home in third place.
He was 19 seconds ahead of another Cornwall AC runner, Tony Dunn, who led the 'older guns', with Dunn claiming the Veterans' prize, finishing fourth overall.
The annual Mob Match is all about team competition, with each club's 'mob of runners' competing in Divisions one, two or three, depending on the size of the club.
In the top division the Sports World Trophy for the winning Men's team went to Cornwall Athletic Club for the 11th successive year, with the Cornwall Grand Prix Champions finishing 279 points clear of the runners-up Newquay Road Runners.
Falmouth Road Runners, showing a considerable improvement in 2012, finished in third place.
In the top tier for Ladies, Cornwall Athletic Club again led the way, winning the team event for the fifth successive year, with the runners-up, East Cornwall Harriers, 132 points behind and Newquay Road Runners again making the top three, this time in third position.
The division two team competition was fought out between Carn Runners and Truro Running Club.
Carn Runners triumphed over their city club rivals winning the Men's title convincingly, but the Truro club reversed the result in the Ladies' competition finishing ahead of Carn, also by a comfortable margin.
In the division for small clubs with mixed male and female teams, the Penryn based Mile High club retained the trophy they won last year, this time by a mammoth margin of 514 points ahead of the recently-formed Bodmin Road Runners.
More Mob Match running news on Grassroots sport, Page 98.
Results, see page 96.