Jud Kirk goes across the water at Round the Lakes

It was difficult to distinguish the cycle track from the boating lake in Poole park at 2019’s Boxing Day showdown

At this year’s edition of the festive Boxing Day blowout in Poole Park it was more a case of “through the lakes” rather than “Round the Lakes”.

Such was the unprecedented amount of rainfall in the days leading up to Christmas, much of the pathway around the park was looking waterlogged and washed out.

That didn’t stop the race from going ahead though and it didn’t seem to stop the 245 participants from thoroughly enjoying themselves as they splashed through the perpetual puddles.

The line up for the race included three Bournemouth AC members. Ant Clark opted to represent his second claim club which is the newly formed Twemlow Track Club. Jud Kirk was in his familiar yellow and blue colours though and Kirsty Drewett ran the race in tandom with her dad Robert.

Ant Clark and Andrew Ridley in Poole Park

Ant Clark races through in Twemlow Track Club attire, followed by Andrew Ridley

Jud Kirk splashes through the water at Round the Lakes

Jud Kirk was looking to make a splash in the over 60 category

Kirsty Drewett and her Dad Robert at Round the Lakes

Kirsty Drewett accompanied her father Robert round the 10k course

Along with the streaming surface water that the competitors had to contend with, the weather conditions were somewhat unfavourable, with a howling wind and teeming rain dominating the morning’s proceedings.

The 10k course was based around the same boating lake and cycle track as the ever popular Saturday morning haunt of Poole parkrun. It consisted of one lap round the flooded cycle track followed by three full laps round the lake and the cycle track.

Ant Clark and Andrew Ridley cruise along at Round the Lakes

Ant heads along the waterlogged cycle track with the Riddler still in pursuit

Jud Kirk splashes through the puddles at Round the Lakes

Jud digs deep to find his best waterskiing skills to help him progress round the track

Southampton AC came over to raid the Poole party and their runners occupied five of the top seven places, with William Bryan picking up the win in a lightening quick time of 32:14.

The runner up spot went to Daniel Mulryan of Thames Valley Harriers in a time of 32:30, with Sam Costley of Southampton taking third in 32:39.

Ant Clark enjoying himself at Round the Lakes

Even in seriously adverse conditions, Ant tends to run with a smile on his face

Jud Kirk gets stuck in at Round the Lakes

Jud gives chase looking to catch the colourful lady in front of him

Another Southampton man, Will Brewin, took 4th place in a time of 32:49 before Callum Gillett of Reading and Rikki James, also of Southampton took fifth and sixth places, both finishing in 33:02.

Dom Willmore of Poole Runners finished 8th in a time of 34:17, with Ben Lewis of Poole AC coming in just behind him in 34:24. Andrew Ridley took the prize for first over 50, crossing the line in a time of 36:32 which put him in 15th place.

Andrew Ridley splashes through the water at Round the Lakes

Andrew Ridley finished as first over 50 in a time of 36:32

Ant Clark was the first Bournemouth AC affiliated runner to make it to the finish line, clocking in at 37:09, which put him in 20th place. It wasn’t one of Ant’s finest performances but it was another step forward on the comeback trail for him.

Before the Wimborne 10 in mid-November, Ant hadn’t raced for several months after he found out he was suffering with Epstein Barr Virus, a muscle wasting illness.

Ant Clark makes his way through the water

Ant wasn’t at his best but still took 20th position, registering a time of 37:09

Jud gives it his all at the Round the Lakes 10k

Jud gives everything he’s got as he nears the end of the race

Picking up the prize for first over 60, Jud Kirk arrived at the finish in a time of 43:21, putting him in 52nd place in the overall standings. That was a decent result for Jud and it was always a welcome reward to pick up the category win. His cause may have been helped somewhat by the conditions though which seemed to keep the numbers down somewhat.

As well as being a keen runner and triathlete, Jud is also swimming coach and he said he was glad he could swim given the amount of water on the course that day.

Jud Kirk feels the pain at Round the Lakes

The pain is etched across Jud’s face as he works hard for the over 60 category win

Kirsty enjoyed some precious family time with her dad as they negotiated their way through the water and the wind to cross the line 1:01:57 and 1:01:58, with Robert taking 212th place and Kirsty in 213th.

Conflicting work routines mean Kirsty and her dad very few opportunities to meet up and spend time together so it was nice that they could make the most of that chance on this occasion.

Kirsty Drewett running alongside her dad Robert

Kirsty very much enjoyed spending time with her Dad as they made their way round

There was also a Junior Relay Race on where the youngsters were paired up with a partner via lucky dip, each running a one mile leg. Several Bournemouth AC juniors took part in that race but they were unable to stop the Poole AC pair of William Rabjohns and Leo Riggs from emerging victorious.

William completed his leg in a superfast time of 5:13 which was the fastest out of anyone. Then Leo brought it home in 6:01 to give them a team time of 11:14.

BAC youngster Oscar Matthews was in the team that came second. He raced to a superb 5:40 time in his leg before handing over to Lexie Brown of Poole AC who got round in 6:12, giving them a cumulative time of 11:52.

Oscar Matthews in the Junior Relay at Round the Lakes

Oscar Matthews ran a blisteringly quick 5:40 mile for his leg in the Junior Relay

Another Bournemouth AC starlet, Erin Wells, was in the team that came fourth. She completed her leg in 6:36 with Izzy Rabjohns of Poole AC taking the second leg and registering a time of 6:41. That gave them a combined time of 13:17.

The other BAC member in action was Mariah Marshall and she formed part of the team that took 5th place, completing her leg in a time of 7:01. She ran the second leg, with Camilla Brown of Poole AC getting round in 6:36 before handing over the baton. Their combined time was 13:37. There were nine teams taking part in total.

Mariah Marshall in the Junior Relay at Round the Lakes

Mariah Marshall completed her leg in just over 7 minutes to give her team 5th place in the Junior Relay