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The weather was warm and sunny with a little light breeze rustling the leaves on the trees, just the kind of weather conditions that athletes favour when attempting to run fast times. Birchfield’s young athletes were not to be disappointed.

Team Manager, Tony Frain, was quietly confident that the U13’s Boy’s “A” team would be amongst the medals if they ran sub 43 minutes. As it happened they did it in style to grab the bronze medals just 8 seconds behind 2nd placed Guildford and Godalming A.C.

U13 road relaysRyan Shields (13:57) took the team into 4th place on the first leg followed by Dylan King (14:25) 5th place and final leg runner Alex Stapleton (14:08) overhauling Herne Hill Harriers and Aldershot and Farnham to bring the team home in a time of 42:30s.The winning team was Keighley and Craven A.C. in a time of 41:58secs.

The U13 Boys “B” team, Ethan Bishop (14:47) Aaron Warmington (16:32) and new recruit Matthew Ashcroft (21:02) finished 37th in a time of 52:21 secs. Ethan carved a massive 64 seconds off his Midlands event time.

Birchfield’s young U15 Boy’s team all of who will be in the same age group next year also excelled on the day taking 57 seconds off their Midlands event finish time. First leg runner, the much improved Nathan Casey (14:17) followed by Daniel Swain (14:10) and Michael Gayle (14:18) an encouraging display of consistency, the team finishing 35th in a time of 42:45secs. Shaftesbury Barnet won the event in a time of 38:02secs.

A vey inexperienced U15 Boy’s “B” team all new to this event stuck to their task to complete the course in 49:46 secs. Michael Brookes (16:08) Silas Goshawk (15:46) and Chris Gaskell (17:50)  gathered some valuable experience from this event, the team finished in 55th place.

The U17 Men’s team were equal to the 10th place achieved at the Midland’s event but had to reduce the finish time by 2.03secs. First leg runner Tom Dodd (11:43) was again supreme running the fastest of all legs on the day. Oliver Mardenborough (13:12 ) who spent a large chunk of last season recovering from injury now appears to be fully recovered and Reis Brooke (13:04) again overhauling the opposition to gain 2 places on the final leg. The team finished in a time of 37:59secs, 2:08 sec. behind the winners Tonbridge A.C. Harry Sachs (14.37) electing to run a single leg in an incomplete team achieved an improvement of 33 secs. on his time at the Midland’s event.

Some encouraging performances here today bode well for the forthcoming cross country season, we hope that you can support as many of the events as possible. Well done to all who contributed to such a successful day.
Tony Frain
Birchfield Harriers

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