Wet & windy Cross Country at Corby

North Midlands Cross Country League Race 2 West Glebe Park, Corby

Report by Dan Thompson

On the 14th November the second round of the North Midlands cross country league race of the season took place, with a stark contrast in conditions from the previous round where we had sun before there was rain and when there was a moist air before there was a strong wind, however that didn’t stop the Kettering Town Harriers members coming to West Glebe Park where there were some exceptionally good performances.

Kettering Town Harriers didn’t have to wait long for their best individual performance and team performance of the day as it came within the first race; the U13 Boys & U15 Girls combined race. Josh Cara comfortably won the race by producing a solid front running performance, it took the first half of the race for Josh to pull away from the field but once he lead he never had to look back or was challenged, Josh even when he slipped over he maintained his composure and pulled away from the field to win by 11 seconds with a time of 10.26 minutes Supporting Josh and also competing for the U13 Boys team were Jack Hope who ran a strong race managed to put on a strong sprint finish at the end to come home in 7th place (11.00 minutes), also finishing strongly was Ethan Mehmet who came 18th with a time of 12.05 minutes.

The U15 Girls team of Gina Diazsantana and Kayleigh Walford both ran superbly to finish 8th place in the team standings due to not having another team member. Gina and Kayleigh both worked their way up the field from a fast start, Gina pulled away to finish 8th (11.41 minutes) and Kayleigh finished 16th with a time of 12.05 minutes after a strong sprint finish at the end of the race.

In the corresponding age category the U15 Boys team of Liam Kirk and Liam Smith both ran well in a competitive field to improve on their placing from the last North Mids. Liam Kirk got off to a strong start and maintained his pace around the 4.5km part of the course and finishing 20th (15.33 minutes); an improvement of 7 places, tracking Liam Kirk down was a much improved Liam Smith who battled very hard to finish 25th (15.57 minutes) an huge improvement of 12 places from the previous race.

The U17 Women also ran in the race and came 7th in the team standings only due to not having another athlete. Imi Stokes ran well to edge out another athlete and come 15th (16.45 minutes) supporting Imi in the U17 Women age category was her team mate Danielle Smith who ran well to finish 19th (17.09 minutes) in her first cross country race of the season.

The next race was the Senior Women’s race where it was possibly the worst weather of the day; however that didn’t stop the Harriers women as they produced a fantastic team performance to come 7th. It was a welcoming sight to see Bessie Rollins back competing for the club; Bessie ran a good race to finish 7th (23.38 minutes) but she was the first U20 Woman back; also competing for the Harriers senior women team were Lizzie Whitaker - 28th (26.27 minutes) - and Yvonne Mehmet (50th in 28.09 minutes).

The senior men made a tremendous improvement from the last race; they were 12th in the team standings on the day and currently lie in 11th place in the overall standings. Steve Giles was the first senior man back; he came 57th (34.23 minutes); next back was Jonathan Goringe who came back from University to compete for the Harriers. In his first race after being laid low by a very nasty virus, Jonny ran a solid race to finish 77th (35.36 minutes); the rest of the senior men’s team consisted of Lee Coulson (99th in 36.58 minutes), Andrew Clawson (113th in 37.54 minutes), Martyn Winstone (118th in 38.14 minutes), Rob Fletcher (121st in 38.26 minutes), Alan Rain (138th in 39.59 minutes), Paul Marlow (146th in 40.52 minutes), Paul Young (155th in 41.51 minutes).

There was improved performances from Jake Waples 5th (21.15 minutes) and David Edwards 11th (22.33 minutes) from the previous race; supporting Jake and David was Daniel Thompson who came 25th (23.35 minutes). The U17 Men finished 4th in the team standings and currently lie 4th in the overall standings too.

The last race of the day was the U13 Girls race, M Sanders 11th (12.30 minutes) held off her teammate G Vaughan 12th (12.31 minutes), also competing for the U13 Girls was Lauren Mehmet who came 27th with a time of 13.56 minutes. The U13 Girls were 7th in the overall and team standings.

There was also a U11 mixed race taking place on the day where several of the younger Harriers members competed. Joe Bowskill was the first Harrier under U11 back; he ran a very good race to finish 6th, Tabatha Watford came 17th, Hannah Winstone came 22nd, Rebecca Hughes came 23rd and Emily Manson came 24th.

Well done to all those competing for Kettering Town Harriers in wet and windy conditions. The next fixture is at Mansfield on December 5th.