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English Cross Country Relays

Category: Cross-country Published Date Hits: 1891

Berry Hill park, Mansfield – 1 November 2014

Last Saturday a strong contingent from Holmfirth Harriers travelled to Berry Hill Park in Mansfield to compete in the English Cross Country Relay Championships.  Supporters and athletes were blessed with good weather, in what is an exciting spectator event.

After a number of Holmfirth’s juniors had competed earlier in the day it was the time for the seniors and their ladies certainly put in the performance of the day. 

Katie Walshaw National XC relays

Katie Walshaw: chasing hard on leg 1

The ‘A’ team consisted of three fell and mountain specialists who demonstrated their speed as well as strength on this 3km course. GB international, Katie Walshaw, led the team off and put in her usual gutsy performance returning in 12th position amongst the country’s top athletes in 10:02.  Helen Berry showed her steely determination as she passed 6 athletes to take the team up to 6th place in 10:37. Helen Fines almost misjudged the timings but made the start line just in time to head off on the final leg. Running strongly but dropping 4 places during the middle section of the course, Helen put in a final effort in the finishing straight to bring the team home in 9th place in 11:02 and with an overall time of 31:42:40. This result far exceeds previous years and is the best position to date for Holmfirth ladies. 

The ‘B’ and ‘C’ team members and the running order had some last minute changes due to injury but they certainly stepped up to the mark, finishing 52nd (Claire Leaver 40th 11:01, Zoe Storr 61st 13:13 & Kath Farquhar 52nd 12:04) and 87th (Emma Serjeant 95th 13:45, Jo Bailey-Taylor 92nd 14:37 & Katherine McFadzean 14:33) respectively. 

The event was won by the ever dominant by Aldershot, Farnham & District in 29:46:50, with their first leg runner, Lily Partridge, recording the fastest leg in 9:31.

Mark Buckingham National XC relays

Mark Buckingham: good effort
after heavy training in Spain

Holmfirth’s men’s team was led by International triathlete, Mark Buckingham who had returned to the UK the previous evening after a heavy block of training in Spain. Not having run since his 3-week annual break, he was not able to compete with the fast pace set by the leaders but completed the two lap, 5km course in 32nd position in a time of 15.58, Richard Smith produced a good run to move the men up a place and recorded a time of 16.37. Peter Brookes had a super run on leg 3 and gained 6 places with a time of 16.34 and Scott Smith brought the “A” team back in 31st position with a good run of 17.51, a total time of 1.07.00. Gareth Humphries and Tom Chadwick ran in an incomplete “B” team recording times of 19.36 and 20.11 respectively. This was Tom’s first outing in an endurance race for the club and he performed very well, as he is more comfortable in sprint races.

The winning team was Stockport Harriers & AC who finished in a time of 1.01.10 and the fastest leg was Andy Heyes of Hallamshire who ran a time of 14.52.

Results: http://www.englishcrosscountry.co.uk/news/2014-xc-relays-results-all-age-groups/

Photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/hhac/sets/72157648706342248/

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