The Warwickshire Cross-country Championships took place on an unseasonably warm day at Newbold Comyn last Saturday.
Again the race was held in conjunction with the Worcestershire Championships, with the host club Leamington C&AC’s Ray Morgan presenting the trophies as part of his duties as Warwickshire County AA president.
For the fourth successive year, Jack Gray (BRAT) was Warwickshire champion, leading right from the off over three laps and 10k of mainly good surface running.
Kenilworth Runners’ Paddy Roddy won the individual silver in the seniors’ race after coming home in 36:03 (fourth overall).
Leamington’s senior men gained a team bronze through Andy Savery (6th in 36:22), Phil Gould (12th in 37:46), Jamie Langley (13th in 38:04) and Paul Andrew (21st in 40:58), finishing just two points shy of silver.
Debutant Dom Hull (41:10) was the host club’s fifth member in 24th followed by the Eoin O’Flynn (20th master in 41:15).
Kenilworth Runners retained their masters’ title, with Kev Hope (5th master in 38:07), Connor Carson (9th master in 39:34), Andy Crabtree (10th master in 39:54) and Stuart Hopkins (16th master in 40:40) their counters.
Spa Striders’ seniors team of Paul Edwards (41:07), Chris McKeown (41:12), Steven Taylor (41:55) and Adam Notley (42:00) finished fifth, while their masters came home in seventh.
The masters’ team were led home by Rich Sykes (42:52) and completed by Dan Fleming (43:46), Josh Layton (44:52) and James Hartwright (46:11).
Selected others (Overall positions, Kenilworth Runners unless stated): 13, Matt Elkington (36:56); 60, Dewi Williams (41:00); 67, Wayne Briggs (41:14); 75, Marc Curtis (41:52); 78, Gavin Fowler (C&AC, 41:58); 84, George Loveday (C&AC, 42:15); 88, Charlie Staveley (C&AC, 42:39); 95, Peter Bryan (42:52); 124, Robert Wilson (C&AC, 44:29); 133, Brian Miller (C&AC, 44:54); 137, James Jaycock (Spa Striders, 45:00); 139, Keith Wilson (Spa Striders, 45:09); 143, Richard Steel (45:16); 145, Dexter Teale (Spa Striders, 45:18); 162, Mick Williams (46:02); 163, Roger Homes (46:11); 165, Gethyn Friswell (Spa Striders, 46:29); 174, Dan Stannard (Spa Striders, 46:53); 175, Simon Perkin (C&AC, 46:43); 185, Robert James (47:28); 187, Robert Mantell (Spa Striders, 47:34); 198, Richard Broadbent (48:08); 201, Barry Elkington (48:25); 202, Mark Alldritt (48:29); 207, Nick Solomon (Spa Striders, 48:42); 216, Paul Quinney (Spa Striders, 49:18); 221, Jit Sispal (C&AC, 49:59); 222, Juan Martin (Spa Striders, 50:00); 228, Pete Taylor (C&AC, 51:05); 252, Matt Leydon (Spa Striders, 53:27); 253, Richard Clifton (C&AC, 53:28); 258, Jimmy Atkins (C&AC, 53:50); 260, Rupe Chahal (C&AC, 54:24); 268, Stephen Jackson (55:22); 271, Doug Rattray (Spa Striders, 56:06); 281, Graham Roberts (C&AC, 57:34); 283, Roger Fagge (C&AC, 58:05); 293, Sagar Depala (C&AC, 60:38); 297, Paolo Foglino (C&AC, 60:59); 302, Tom Dable (67:00).
With less than a minute separating Leamington’s three fastest seniors in the two Birmingham League meetings this season, there was always going to be healthy competition to be the first counter in the women’s’ race.
Jenny Jeeves was the first to show and led through most of the first of two laps.
She was chased hard by Zara Blower, with Sue Harrison tracking them closely.
Well into the final mile of the demanding four-mile course Blower eased past Jeeves, quickly followed by Harrison. As the finish line approached, Harrison dug deep to open a small gap on Blower, with Jeeves still keeping them in her sights.
Harrison crossed the line in 12th place in 26:39 (17th overall), with Blower just six seconds and a place back (20th overall).
Jeeves, who like Harrison could have run in the masters’ race, took 15th place in 27:03, with just 24 seconds separating the three C&AC athletes.
Nuneaton Harriers took team gold after a battle with the BRAT club from Birmingham, who claimed silver.
The race for bronze was a close-fought thing with Leamington’s close packing proving key as just seven points separated third to fifth.
The team counters were well supported, with Courtney Thornberry finishing 21st in 29:51 after a long battle with Faye Barr (22nd in 29:54).
Laura Gould was 83rd (31st master) in 32:15, with Wendy Woodhouse 111th in 34:09 and Delia Caruana 147th in 37:59.
Spa Striders’ Charlotte Everard (26:53) finished 21st overall and 14th senior.
In the masters’ race, Kenilworth Ladies picked up the team bronze, led by Sarah Rose, who claimed the county silver medal in 26:07 (13th overall).
Laura Pettifer (7th master in 28:05) and Rachel Miller (18th master in 29:48) completed the counters.
Kenilworth were also the third masters’ B team and the only club to field a C team.
Spa Striders’ masters team of Kate Gadsby (8th master in 28:09), Susie Stannard (12th master in 29:04) and Bethan Gwynn (24th master in 31:16) finished just outside the medals in fourth.
Selected others (Overall positions, Kenilworth Runners unless stated): 57, Esther Illman (30:13); 80, Clare Hinton (Spa Striders, 31:44); 81, Lucy Tugwell (Spa Striders, 31:56); 87, Ruth Tennant (Spa Striders, 32:35); 94, Claire Dyer (33:02); 101, Claire Goult (33:21); 103, Elisse Breuglemans (33:30); 106, Helene Wright (Spa Striders, 33:49); 119, Kerrie Flippance (34:48); 133, Linda Fullaway (35:31); 143, Samantha Moffatt (37:10); 152, Carla Fuste (38:34); 153, Pauline Dable (38:35).
An outstanding run from Cian McKeaney in the under-15 boys’ race produced Leamington C&AC’s only gold medal of the championships.
McKeaney led from the start to secure his first championship title in 14min 52sec.
Strong running from Sam Lubrano (16th in 16:28), Will Eadon (24th in 17:16) and Daniel Chahal (26th in 17:39) secured a team bronze.
However, it was Kenilworth Runners who were celebrating silver courtesy of Felix Lunn (7th in 15:25), Oliver Lunn (13th in 15:56) and Cameron Williams-Stein (14th in 16:00).
Selected other Kenilworth Runners: 31, Nathan Chapple (17:14); 46, Jacob Watson (18:57).
Leamington’s under-17 men produced a great performance on the tough 6.1k course to take second place in the team standings behind Coventry Godiva.
Greg West showed his strength by pulling through in the second lap to gain individual bronze in 23:37.
The fast-improving Dominic Priest was fourth in 23:44 despite losing a shoe just after the infamous ditch, with Kieran Chahal (seventh in 24:33), completed the team scoring.
Selected others (Leamington C&AC unless stated): 9, Tommy Ablett (24:37); 12, Adam Houghton (Kenilworth Runners, 25:23); 14, Dan Wilkinson (25:33); 16, Alex Ibbs (26:16); 20, Zak Burton (Kenilworth Runners, 27:15); 24, Ed Perkin (28:45).
In the under-13 boys’ race, Kenilworth Runners claimed third place through Billy Doxey (11th in 12:57), Luke Hutchinson (13th in 13:07) and Sam Crouchley (32nd in 13:52).
Selected others (Leamington C&AC unless stated): 16, Alex Gidney (13:24), 25, Charlie Parsons (14:15), 37, Joe Quinney (15:30); 38, Ryan Hill (Kenilworth Runners, 14:20); 39, Zac Cale (16:29).
Leamington’s under-13 girls finished fourth, with Mel Gould leading the team home with a strong run for sixth place in 13:50.
Selected others: 15, Emily Lovett (14:48); 18, Eva Fitzpatrick (15:05); 21, Ana Lovett (15:32).
Under-15 girls (Leamington C&AC unless stated): 17, Rosie Cale (19:41); 20, Martha Curran (Kenilworth Runners, 20:04); 23, Lucy Green (20:46); 24, Alice Parsons (20:46); 26, Amber Ballard (22:11).
Under-17 Women: 18, Bella Doexy (Kenilworth Runners, 26:46).