The National Cross Country relays were held in Mansfield on Saturday, 5 November 2016 with the senior women just missing out on a medal finishing in fourth place.
Senior Women’s race
First up on leg one was Nicole Roberts who following good runs in the road relay was really hoping to make an impact. Sadly it wasn’t the best day for her as she felt under the weather from the start and, with such a fierce pace set by Steph Twell, the race was decided in the first 1500m. However,despite not being at her best, Nicole still ran 10:13 to come back in 20th position. She was followed by Louise Webb, who has also started the winter well and this race was no exception, as she pulled back 11 places to finish in ninth with a time of 10:14. On the final leg was Sarah McDonald who continued her tremendous year. Although not having raced since September she had a stunning run clawing back another five places to leave the team very close to medals but in fourth place by only six seconds. She completed the course in a time of 9:44 which gave her the eighth fastest leg of the day, the only one in the top ten fastest legs who did not run on first leg.
Total time 30:12
Tamara Armoush made the long train journey from London to compete and had a storming run on this leg to come back in 13th with a time of 10:07. Next up was Georgie Hartigan in her first race of the season. She had a super run gaining two places to come back in 10th only one place behind the A team. On the final leg was Sarah Conway, not an athlete to blow her own trumpet who ran 45secs. quicker than last year on a much windier day. She brought the B team back in 16th place with a time of 11:26
Total time 32:01
Lizzie Watters ran a time of 11:56 finishing in 64th followed by Sara McNamee who ran a time of 14:19 and finally Sam Watters who made up six paces in a time of 14:15 to bring the team home in 78th place out of 123 teams.
With some of the key runners and youngsters missing the men still achieved a top 20 finish
Alex Tovey was first runner in the A team and ran well to record a time of 15:24 to finish in 14th place. Johnny Goringe was on second lag and completed the course in 15:56 to come home in 17th. He handed on to Andrew Ridley who maintained 17th with a time of 16:34. Andy Peat was on the last leg and gained two places to finish in 15th position in 16:09.
Rory Grant was the lead off for the B team and ran a solid leg of 16:08 which out the team in 41st place. Leg two saw Tom Beasley retain this position with s time of 16:36. On the penultimate leg Alastair Rutherford ran 17:47.15 in 47th and Ben Griffiths put in a strong performance of 16.53 to gain seven places for a final position of 40th, out of 166 teams.
U13 Girls A Team
The U13 girls were missing one of their key athletes but still managed to put out two teams. Caitlin Casey was on first leg and her time of 8:52 put the team in 93rd place. Emmeline Grace continued her good form this winter gaining 39 places in a time of 8:13. Hope Kendall was on last leg but an illness resulted in her struggling on this occasion to finish in 67th place in a time of 9.53.
Mia Whitehouse was first leg and her time of 9:05 put the team in 96th. Tara Patel took over from her and gained seven places in 9:33. The last runner for the B team was Sophia Deans in her first outing for the Club turned in an excellent performance of 8:51 to bring the team home in 73rd.
This was the only other young athletes team that competed, again missing some key athletes. Nathan Casey was on first leg and ran well to finish in 7.04 (51st), next up was Jordan Fisher- Brindle who gained eight places in a time of 7.23. Finally Daniel Swain was on the final leg who after an injury prone few months is getting back to top form. He completed the course in 7.28 and retained the 43rd team position.