Fine performances in National Road Relays

The Harriers middle distance squad were in action again at the National road relays over the weekend and a number of fine performances were delivered at a unseasonably warm Sutton Park setting over the traditional and challenging 3.8km course.

Josh Cara continued his fantastic form from the Midland relays a few weeks earlier by leading the U15 Boys team to a highly respectable 19th position overall. Josh who is still a first year U15 ran the opening leg and more than held his own against most of the much larger boys to finish in an excellent 6th position in a close finish just 9 seconds off the leader Andy Smith from Poole. Josh finished in 12.48, a new life time best over the course, 17 seconds from his previous best set 3 weeks earlier. Jack Hope also a first year U15 also ran a strong 2nd leg dropping just one place in 13.45, and handing over to Edward Cannell for the third leg, who was competing in a national competition for the first time. Edward ran very well to record a new PB over the course of 15.07. The total time for the team was 41.42 (a 11 second improvement), with the winning team Trafford taking the championship in 38.15. Josh recorded the 10th fastest time for his age group, with Jack Crabtree completing the course the fastest in 12.01.

Not to be outdone the U15 girls team also managed to secure a top 20 position, with all three girls improving significantly from a few weeks earlier. Fran Ashworth was first off and she enjoyed a fine race to finish her leg in 28th position and record a new lifetime best of 15.31, handing over to Abigail Coleman for the second leg. Abs also ran a fine second leg making up 3 positions recording 15.54. Maisie Green gave chase on the final leg and ran aggressively to make a further 5 places and record 15.40. The final position of 20th was a great effort and as a team they improved a full 50 seconds from the Midland relays in September.

Earlier in the day the U13 girls consisting of Tabatha Walford, Izzy Cara and Beth Gordon ran well to finish in 35th position. Tabs and Izzy both having had miss a week's training due to school trips were slightly below their best, with Tabs finishing in 34th position in 16.32, and Izzy dropping a few places with 17.57. Beth Gordon promoted in to the A team ran a good third leg to make up 4 places and record a new PB over the course by 22 seconds with 16.54.

The final race of the day saw the U17 men in action and Josh Coles fresh from his success over Cross Country the week earlier was promoted to the first leg and he responded with a battling performance to finish in 18th position and set a new PB over the course by an impressive 49 seconds to record 12.36. Liam Kirk on the second leg paid for a fast start on the long incline and had to slow up mid race, but recorded a respectable 14.09. The final leg was down to Matt Stewart who ran well to complete the course in a new PB of 13.23 to bring the team home in a respectable 32nd position. All teams now look forward to the National XC relays in 2 weeks time.