James Baker continued his fine recent form with another victory in the Lakeside 5k Prologue.
The Chichester ace, the Portsmouth event’s 2013 champion, finished 34 seconds clear of second-placed James Share of Poole Runners to reclaim his title.
The 38 year-old clocked a time of 15min 56sec in cold and blustery conditions, 12 seconds off his season’s best.
It continued a remarkable year even by Baker’s high standards and came less than 24 hours after he had helped Chichester to one of their best-ever showings in a Sussex Cross Country League fixture.
Baker believes he can use his latest win as a springboard for greater success.
He said: “I really enjoyed the three-lap course they introduced this year, it’s a shame they can’t use the three-lap course for the main series next year.
“I ran the Sussex League cross-country on Saturday and I think that slowed me down a bit, but I’m glad to have claimed the victory. The race went to plan and I was happy to break the 16-minute barrier.
“I’m competing in the South of England Cross Country Championships at the end of January, and hope I can put in a good performance there.
“As a personal target, I’m also aiming to break the 2hr 30min barrier at the Bournemouth Marathon next year.”
Baker has attributed his latest successes to an increased training schedule, allowing him to recapture his best form.
“I’ve upped my training mileage from 60 miles to 100 miles a week this year, and I really think my recent performances demonstrate that it’s starting to pay off and I’m returning to my level of ten years ago,” he added.
“I’m looking forward to the Lakeside summer series and have a few events lined up beforehand, so hopefully I’ll be able to approach it in top form and reclaim the title.”
The Lakeside Prologue saw 72 runners brave the bracing conditions.