The day defied the weather forecasters and provided a good day for racing in the first Mid Lancs fixture of the season. Forty Four Blackburn Harriers competed on the day with some good individual results, some good team results and debuts for a number of others.
Full Results HERE
Amy Davies in the Girls Race carried on from her very good Red Rose performances by winning here on the day, holding off Kirsty Hamilton from Lancaster in 2nd place. Eleesha Charnley in 8th wasn’t far off Amy, and debutants Amy Dowsing (20th) and Eleanor Allsop (31st) backed up the front two in good style and the youngest two of the girls – Kate Cookson (50th) and Alanya Irvine (59th) battled all the way. Sadly, there is no Team category in the U11’s for Blackburn would have won it.
Jamie Teare (12th) and maintaining his competitive start to the season, led home the three Harriers in the Boys Race. Behind Jamie came Edward Lee, another debutant in 28th and Jamie’s brother Rory (38th).
Three of the girls competed here – Hannah Cookson, Natalya Irvine and Maddie Elliott and without a fourth runner, missed out on being included in the Team Competition. Hannah took a really battling 7th place – Natalya getting over a recent injury came in 14th just 18 seconds behind Hannah and Maddie and further 12 seconds back in 20th place. Just one boy out in the U13’s and that was Jack Evans in 40th place and a good effort for his first XC race this year.
Six Harriers in this one, with the first four being good enough to take the Team Prize from Preston in second place. Liz Greenwood who won the race with Grace Handley in 2nd were backed up by Megan Clarkson (11th) and Mollie Morton in her debut (21st) and these four counted for the winning Team. Olivia Wilson (24th) and Rose Abbott (25th) completed a good day for the Club in this age category.
In the Boys Race, Byron Abbott in the leading group at the front of the Race had to drop out with an injury which left Thomas Harbour running a really determined Race in 17th place and supported by Jack Wilkinson in (40th).
Another Team win here, pipping in Preston who took second place. There were good runs from Katie Buckingham taking 5th place and being backed up by Phoebe Howe in 8th and Rhiannon Wickham (9th) is a good start for the season for them.
The U17 Boys then had to live up to the Girls performance and they did, winning the Team prize again in a photo finish by just one point from Preston. Jack Hindle (6th), Joseph Howe (10th) who managed to hold off Preston’s Dan Whitlock which was crucial for the Team result and Morgan Philips (13th) packed really well.
Seven of the Harriers Senior women ran – (and with a noted absence, she know’s who she is!!) – and with the first three to count for the Team prize, the Harriers just missed out by 10 points coming in second to Barrow. Helen Leigh led the Team home in 7th, with Laura Hesketh (17th) and Rebecca Shorrock (22nd) making up the three counters. Sarah Toms, another athlete trying to get over recent injuries took a good 24th place. Shelley Tattersall had a solid run in 38th. Jackie Taylor took (67th) and Carol Cookson (124th) in what was a large field with 149 finishers and 38 Club Teams.
The Team prize was won by Preston with Blackburn in a very creditable 7th place. Featuring 11 Harriers, the team was led home by Shaun Livesey in 33rd place with Tom Blaney (35th), Chris Davies (39th), Andy Fleet debuting for the Club (44th), Chris Barnes 57th and Andy Heyes another debutant in 159th were the six counters. Backing these up were Allan Hartley (202nd), John Cookson (207th), Ian Clarkson (214th), Richard Taylor 220th) and Paul Wilkinson (239th).
302 finishers and 34 Club Teams contested the Senior Mens Race, in which it is the first six athletes for a Club that make up the Team. Just 11 places separated the first four Harriers home and during the Race these four were headed at different times by Andy, Tom and Shaun with Andy probably paying the price for going off very fast at the front of the Race.