A NEW personal best and a heat victory was the reward for Aaron Bennet as PH Racing Club athletes headed for Stirling last Friday evening.

The 16-year-old and a number of his clubmates took part in the third running of the Monument Mile Classic event on the track at Stirling University which attracted runners from across the country.

Twice postponed in May and July, the race saw two athletes – Jonathan Davies (Reading AC) and Ian Crowe-Wright (Brighton and Hove AC) – post the first sub-four minute mile runs on Scottish soil in 11 years.

That highlighted the calibre of runner that PH's contingent faced but Bennet, who has been making excellent progress lately, led from the start in his heat and went on to break the tape in a best mile time of five minutes and 10.14 seconds, which was 11.04 seconds clear of host club Central AC's Ewan Jack.

Prior to that, Allen Marr and Alan Cockburn, who was making his third appearance at the event, were first up for PH in heat four. While improving their positions towards the end of the race, they enjoyed an excellent tussle, with Marr placing fourth in a new best of 5:28.70 and Cockburn one place further back in 5:29.87.

In race seven, Scott Love recorded a new top time of 5:16.21 on his way to a seventh-place finish, while Alan McGowan, in race nine, did similar by clocking 5:11.79 to finish fifth in race nine.

Finding conditions more suitable than in a 1500 metre race the previous Sunday, Paul Kieran was another who set a new personal benchmark for the distance in race 15, posting 4:46.20 to cross the line fifth, while Jamie Lessels also dipped under the five-minute mark in race 16, clocking 4:58.46.