One of the best cross country venues in the country – Berry Hill Park in Mansfield – was once again the venue for the 2022 National Cross Country Relay Championships — (All Age Group Results) – held on a misty grey day, with thankfully, little or no rain and good conditions underfoot. The Harriers had nine teams entered but lost two on the eve of the Championships because of illness which meant we had 2 senior men’s teams and a part team, one U15 Boys team, one U17 Boys team, one U17 Women’s team, one Junior Men’s team and one Junior Women’s team.
The Junior Women’s team got the Club off to a great start with a top ten finish coming in 8th position in a field of 43 teams — (33 full and 10 part teams) – headed by winners Loughborough University. Abigail Stratton went on 1st Leg (9th) for the Harriers and posted the 10th fastest time of the day (8.58.10) as she handed over to Amy Davies on Leg 2 who ran 9.31.75, pulling back two places with Eleesha Charnley going on the final Leg running 9.28.35 to bring the team home in 8th place. The Junior Men’s Team featured Matt Ramsden, Sam Hodkinson and David Holman, which had 55 full and 18 part teams in the field. Matt got the team off to a flyer as he ran the 5th fastest Leg of the day with his 8.44.15 clocking followed by Sam on Leg 2 with a time of 9.56.80 handing over to David on the final Leg who ran 9.29.80, the team placing 16th overall.
Our U15 Boy’s team had the best overall performance of the day as they finished in 5th place – the same team that won a Team Silver Medal at the Northern Cross Country Relays in Sheffield recently. Oliver Gill’s time of 6.36.25 was the 8th fastest Leg of the day in a field that had 75 full and 20 part teams involved. Sam Aspey kept the team in the running with his 6.51.55 and in the run in to the finish moved up to 4th before in a great effort, handing over to Matthew Smith on Leg 3, who did what he did in the Northerns by holding the team position and drawing a few seconds clear, ensuring the team came 5th overall on the day.
The U17 Men’s Race had 65 full and 16 part teams lining up at the start – Blackburn Harriers having Dexta Thompson, Jack Lamb and Daniel Smith as the team. Dexta took Leg 1 running 9.27.80 with Jack Lamb on Leg 2 who posted a time of 10.04.45 before passing on to Daniel on the final Leg – bringing the team home to a good 12th place.
Final Race of the day featured the Senior Men – 167 full and 31 part teams. Blackburn Harriers had two full and one part teams out on the day. An excellent 12th fastest time of the day by Daniel Bebbington (15.21.50) got the A team off to a real flyer, bringing them in 7th place. Rob Warner took over on Leg 2 running 16.37.00 followed by Josh Birmingham in his first outing for the Club at the National Relays on Leg 3 (16.21.10) pssing on to Callum Davidson on the final Leg – clocking 15.59.65, Callum brought the team home in 12th place which was a good result.
Senior Men’s Team Manager – Karl Billington – commented on the performance saying that it was “Another great performance from the lads yesterday. The A team with another huge step forward on the national stage. All looking good towards those championships post Christmas“.
Our B team finished in 63rd place which had Ben Makin on Leg 1 running 18.02.45, followed by Ben Fish on Leg 2 posting a time of 16.45.50. Tom Blaney ran Leg 3 in 18.23.15 followed on the final Leg by Nick Gaskell – running his third race in the last 8 days – posting a time of 18.21.00. The Club’s C team lost an athlete on the eve of the Championships – the team having Matt Nuttall on Leg 1 (19.00.85), Danny Maynard on leg 2 (20.01.70) and Chris Davies Leg 3 (18.27.70).
More recent results showed Janine Fallon tackling the Langdale Marathon – (RESULTS) – hardly a personal best type of course, that is for sure. Janine ran a time of 4hr 28.02 on the gruelling course which made her 8th Woman on the day and 4th V45. Afterwards janine told the Club “The half marathon is more than enough, but I had to pass the finish and do the lap again, so twice up Wrynose Pass.“
Amy and Lindsay Davies were in the Power 5k Road Race on 21st Ocober – the race featuring 44 runners and won by Leven Valley’s Luca Messenger Jones in 15.42. Amy came home in 33rd spot running 19.01 whilst Lindsay placed 43rd in 22.33.