A WARRINGTON Athletics Club member defied cramp to finish his first ever marathon quicker than he thought he would.

Leighton Sharman, 20, made his debut over the distance at Sunday’s MBNA Chester Marathon and he began to run into problems at around the 20-mile mark.

In his own words, he was “absolutely wasted” in the final 5km but he still managed to complete the race in 3hours 10mins 24secs – comfortably beating his 3hours 15mins target.

At the same event, clubmate Louise Blizzard ran in the “Metric Marathon” and completed the 26.2km course in 1hour 55mins 8secs, which saw her place fourth in the womens’ rankings.

Elsewhere, Warrington Athletics Club were represented Down Under as Jack Green competed in the Sydney Striders North Head 10km road race.

Green, who recently moved to Australia for work purposes, won the race by a comfortable 39-second margin and his time of 34mins 6.1secs was his second-fastest 10km time.

Much closer to home, two of the club’s Masters athletes have been in action.

Steve Watmough finished 25th overall in the 35-64 years 8km race at the English Masters Inter-area cross country in Bury St Edmunds, stopping the clock at 29mins 58secs to finish second in the over 55s age group.

Mervyn Ward took in the Northern Masters 10,000m Championships in Ashton-under-Lyne on Sunday, finishing tenth overall and taking the over 60s silver medal with a time of 40mins 47.6secs.