This years Cross Country racing got under way at the weekend with the Harriers athletes competing in the Mid Lancs League, Red Rose League and Cardiff in the Cross Challenge Series opening fixture.
Over sixty athletes turned out for the Club at the first fixture in this years Mid Lancs League held at Cuerden Valley producing some great results on the day including four Team wins, three second places, one third place and fourth. For a number of the younger runners, this was their first ever competition for the Club in Cross Country and they certainly rose to the occasion. Some of the youngsters had already run their schools cross country race in the morning as well!
The U11 Girls had ten runners and came 2nd in the Team Race with Molly Grimshaw the highest placed runner in 7th, Hannah Davies 10th, Kady Thompson 13th made up the three Team counters with Isabelle Hartley in 16th, Ayesha Vose (23rd), Grace Brady (25th), Faith Gillibrand 35th, Imogen Robinson 37th, Tippi Francis 44th and Charlotte Sousa 48th.
The U11 Boys had sixteen running with great packing at the front of the Race which meant they won the Team Race from Liverpool PS in 2nd. Daniel Smith came home in 7th with Harry Sambook in 8th and Oliver Gill in 9th being the three counters for the Team. In 16th came Findlay Lewis followed by Samuel Aspey in 18th, Matthew Smith in 19th spot, Jacob Joyce in 24th, Charlie Hawarth (27th), George Ramsden (36th), Findlay Carroll 41st and Felix Thompson in 42nd with Aidan Downes just two places further back in 44th, Harrison Waite in 50th, Alexander Brien in 54th, Alfie Ward in 56th place and Daniel Bretherton in 61st – – and what about this for commitment – Lulu Sharp missed the start of the U11 Girls Race because she had been in a dance competition and then went and asked to run in the U11 Boys race, which she did in 58th place.
Hollie Cubbon (13.48) was first home for the U13 Girls in 8th position and backed up by Leah Hoole (14.32) in 14th and Caroline Woodworth (15.00) in 18th spot all combining to take 2nd place in the Team Race. Keira Haxton (15.01) was just one place and one second behind Caroline in 19th with Eva Knowles (15.51) in 32nd and Megan Jones (16.19) in 39th overall.
Great packing by the U13 Boys with six in the first eleven places meant another Team win. Dexta Thompson (13.42) led the way home in 5th with David Holman (13.48) in 6th and Isaac Butler (13.52) in 8th being the three counters in the race. Just one place back came Zach Walmsley (14.09) in 9th, Hayden Mercer (14.15) in 10th, Kyle Taylor-Pomfret (14.16) in 11th, Rory Teare (14.55) in 15th and all backed up with solid runs from Codie Dewhurst (16.25) in 34th, Saul Sharp clocking 16.49 in 39th spot and Sebastian Burton in 40th place with a time of 17.04.
Eleesha Charnley was first home for the U15 Girls as they finished 4th in the Team Race – Eleesha having a great run in 2nd spot (14.44) with Amy Davies in 4th (15.12), Lucy Brady 32nd in 20.52 and Ella Hardman 41st in 25.13. Jamie Teare led the U15 Boys home into 3rd in the Team Race as he finished strongly in 9th (14.08), followed by good runs from Findlay Sullivan in 18th place (15.16), Harry Wilkin (19th) clocking 15.17, Ethan Barbarewicz (30th) in a time of 16.42 and Luke Ingleson 33rd in 17.27.
Maddie Elliott had a good run in the U17 Women’s Race placing 3rd in a time of 16.05 after battling with Briony Holt who just pipped her in by two seconds. Freya Black (11th) in 19.43 and Chloe Gardner 12th in 20.02 meant that the Team came first as no other team had three competitors. Bradley Meikleham made an impressive debut in the U17’s Race coming home in 9th place in 21.21 whilst Joe Gebbie who has missed quite a bit of training through injury ran well to take 12th spot in 21.52.
Cracking results for the Senior Women too on the day as they won the Team Race with Joanne Nelson placing 3rd in 22.15, Victoria Mousley 8th in a time of 23.07 and Carly Edwards 16th posting a time of 25.11. Janine Fallon (23rd) in 26.01, Lindsay Davies (53rd) in 28.31 and Michelle Teare (57th) clocking 29.20 combined to take the 12th Team spot. Added to that was a 2nd place in the Vet Women’s Race with Joanne, Victoria and Janine taking the three counting spots – they had exactly the same number of points as the winners – Barlick – but came second on countback.
Five athletes in the Senior Men’s Race led home by Mark Chippendale in 27th in a very solid time of 40.41 followed by new member Martin Hawarth in 45th (42.56), Allan Hartley (155th) with a time of 52.11, Andrew Knowles in 168th place (53.03) and Danny Teare 172nd clocking 53.41.
The Senior Men have targeted the Red Rose League this year and got off to a brilliant start – winning the Men’s Team and Vets Team Races by getting seven athletes home in the top twenty finishers out of the fourteen senior men competing on the day.
The Team was led home by Tim Raynes in a time of 35.19 when he finished second to the race winner – Jonathan Kay (34.46). Next home came Jack Hindle just three places further back in 5th (35.54) followed by Shaun Livesey in 10th (37.50), Mat Nuttall (13th) clocking 38.43, Ben Costello in 15th position (39.05), Chris Davies in 16th (39.12) and Paul Brindle 20th in a time of 39.41. Team Manager Paul Guinan was next home in 33rd spot (41.20) followed by Paulo Sousa in his first cross country race for the Club in 39th with a time of 41.39. Chris Balderson was the tenth Harrier home in 50th place (43.24) followed in by Tom Anderson (75th) in 45.09, Danny Maynard (79th) running a time of 45.34, John Chaplin 90th in 46.15 and Gary Pearse 108th (47.57). Alison Armour ran in the Senior Women’s race placing 96th in a time of 31.38…………….Shaun Livesey (2nd V40), Mat Nuttall (1st V45), Chris Davies (4th V40) and Paul Brindle (3rd V45) combined to win the Vets Team. This double win sets the Team up nicely for the Series.
Men’s Team Manager Paul Guinan was pleased with how the day worked out for the Harriers telling commenting “What a great turnout for the Seniors at Leigh this afternoon, solid performances all round, and a Team win from Todmorden in 2nd place and Leigh in 3rd. A pleasure sorting things out for this bunch, what a great set of athletes, once again well done everyone, already looking forward to the next race”.
(L-R Jack Hindle – Chris Balderson – Paul Guinan – Tim Raynes – Paulo Sousa – John Chaplin – Tom Anderson – Ben Costello – Shaun Livesey – Chris Davies – Paul Brindle – Mat Nuttall)
British Athletics Cross Challenge
A great start for Rob Warner in the opening fixture of this years Cross Challenge held in Cardiff which saw him take 19th place in a time of 29.01 and afterwards he spoke to the Club about the day commenting “The result of the race wasn’t bad, especially as it’s the first one of the season, but the way I ran wasn’t great! I went off a bit too hard at the start as I was inside the top 10 for the first lap! I then had a really rough 2nd lap where I fell through the field quite badly and was into the 30s at one point I think. However, I managed to really dig in on the last lap, made sure I didn’t lose any more places and took about 6 or 7 on the last lap. So overall quite pleased with the result (19th in the cross challenge and 23rd, I think, overall) but definitely lots to work on for next time”.
Manchester Half-Marathon – Sunday October 15th
Joe Monk goes from strength to strength having had a cracking year and his latest race proved no exception when he finished 18th over all in a fantastic new PB of 70.45, nearly four minutes quicker than his previous best time. Delighted, Joe summed up his feelings about this race by telling the Club that he “can’t believe it, was hoping for around 71:30. Managed to get in a group of 8 but there wasn’t much impetus to push on the pace. 3 of us got away and kept the pace in the low 5:20 range. Justifies the hard training that I have put in, looking forward to Leeds now”.
Bartletts Farndon 10k – Sunday October 15th
Also having a great run at the weekend was Pauline Powell who won the Bartletts Farndon 10k in a Course Record time for Women of 36.46 when she finished 13th overall. This was Pauline’s 3rd 10k win on the roads this year and she told the Club afterwards that she was “was pleased with my race today, the course was very undulating and windy in places, but i felt good and really enjoyed it”.