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Midland Counties Road Relay took place at Sutton Park on Saturday, 23rd September 2017.  The Stags came away with two firsts in Senior Women and U15 Boys, one second in U13 Girls and a third in Senior Men.

Senior Women

The Senior Ladies once again proved to be by far and away the best team not only in the Midlands but the South West of England. This year our leading team improved on last year’s performance by gaining victory with a margin of 1 min 30 sec. again registering five of the quickest times. This makes three in a row which is moving us up the leader board in terms of victories.

A team 1st  1:00:39

Leg 1 Becky Straw has finally emerged from an extended period of injury and came back in 1st place on a very competitive first leg with a time of 14:43 which also proved to be the quickest leg of the day.
Leg 2 Mari Smith despite being “not fit” gave us a 55sec lead with a time of 15:09.
Leg 3 Bryony Gunn reliable as ever, though enduring considerable problems during the summer, ran a time of 15:34 maintaining the teams lead.
Leg 4 Katie Allen despite having a healthy lead was determined to run as hard as possible and extended that lead to 90 sec, bringing the team home in first with a time of 15:13.

B team 5th 1:04:31

Leg 1 Amanda Wright-Smith is one of the quickest to ever run here and even in her dotage managed to run 16:09.
Leg 2 Julia Cooke was “enjoying” a run out in her first visit to Sutton Park and was up there with the top times coming home in 15:41
Leg 3 Lizzie Watters was delighted to come back in a personal best time of 16:44
Leg 4 Debbie Walters worked till 1 pm. dashed over and closed the team in 4th place in a time of 15:57. She also has registered one of the quickest times in this event.

C team 17th 1:11:12

Leg 1 Susie McManus, debut run for the team 16:46
Leg 2 Beverley Hartigan, two commonwealth Games and several road relays, super to see her here again ran 18:22 with a broken leg!
Leg 3 Sarah Conway, Still carrying an injury ran 17:33
Leg 4  Frances Vickers, closed the team scoring with 18:31

E team 42nd 1:18:20

Leg 1 Jenny Parker also a debut run                   17:13
Leg 2 Kathryn Salt, debut run                              19:23
Leg 3 Emily Weir, debut run                                 21:31
Leg 4 Julie Rogers, anything but a debut run      20:13

D team 71st 1:24:41

Leg 1 Sam Watters                                                19:22
Leg 2 Faye Morley                                                 22:00
Leg 3 Kimberley Thomas (Sharman)                   20:32
Leg 4 Sarah Capewell (Pallett)                             22:47

101 complete teams finished.

Report by Eddie Cockayne


Senior Men

In the Senior Men race our A team finished 3rd, the same as last year, and it was an improvement on last year’s time.

A team 3rd 1:50:09

Leg 1 Ed Banks brought the team home in 10th in a time of 18:38
Leg 2 Alex Tovey made up six places in a time of 18:06
Leg 3 Rory Grant made up another place to bring the team to 3rd in a time of 18:30
Leg 4 William Richardson (U20) ran the fifth equal fastest time of the day to maintain our 3rd place in 17:53 which was 20 secs faster than last year.
Leg 5 Jonathan Goringe also maintained our third position in 18:40
Leg 6 Thomas Dodd (U20) brought the team home in 18:22 which was 13 secs faster than his 2016 time.

B team 20th  2:02:53

Leg 1 Orlando Corea (V40) ran 19:14, Leg 2 Connall Green (U20) 22:06, Leg 3 Ben Griffiths (U23) 20:03, Leg 4 Umar Ahmed (U23) 19:30, Leg 5 Reis Brooke (U20) 21:51, Leg 6 Matt Biggs (V35) 20:09


U13 Girls

The Stags had two teams in the age group and A team finished second while the B team finished 26th out of 29 finishers.

A team 2nd 52:15

Leg 1 Ever reliable Amy Harland brought the team home in 1st place in a time of 19:49, Leg 2 Emmeline Grace maintained the team lead in a time of 16:06, Leg 3 Hope Kendall ran the last leg and brought the team home in second, and her time was 16:20.

B team 26th 1:02:18

Leg 1 Caitlin Casey 23:34, Leg 2 Lola Orton 18:19, Leg 3 Lucy O’Neill 20:25.


U15 Girls 17th 49:28

We only had one runner in 2016 but his year we have managed to get a full team. Leg 1 Chloe Pettitt in 16:17, Leg 2 Poppy Jones 16:14 and Leg 3 Renee Williams 16:57


U17 Women

Considering we only had two runners in this race last year, this year we had one full team and two additional runners.

A team 9th 47:30

Leg 1 Savannah Causer ran in 15:39 in twelveth, Leg 2 Meghan Taylor improved three places in 15:26 and Leg 3 Caitlin McMorrow maintained our nineth position in 16:25.

B team

Leg 1 Georgia Lees 16:19 and Leg 2 Georgina Mitchell in 15:49 was in 14th position.


U13 Boys, U15 Boys and U17 Men

Birchfield Harriers had a bumper turnout of 24 athletes competing in the opening event of the road & cross country season, 7 of whom were making there first appearance for Birchfield in a distance race.

Commendations to the parents and friends for their support without which these events would not be such a success.

First away were the U13 Boys with 1st leg runner Ryan Hand completing the 2.4 mile course in 13.59 (6th fastest of all legs) followed by Christian Chapajong 15.27 and Alex Cook 15.19. The team finished in 5th place just 21 seconds off a team bronze medal place in 44.45s.

In a mix up of leg running order there were 2 incomplete U13 team on the results sheet. Caleb Coley was intended to run in the “B” team 3rd leg, had he done so it would have read Seb Taylor 15.17, Ben Ferguson 16.16, Caleb Coley 16.26 giving a team time of 47.59 and 18th place. Joshua Coley ran a single leg in an impressive time of 15.20 in the ”C” team. Both Coley Brothers, normally sprinters, impressed in their first long distance race.


Triumphant U15 team

Triumphant U15 team

There were 3 U15 teams on the start line where the “A” team were strongly fancied to be amongst the medals, they were to be in the lead from start to finish in 39.57s. Ryan Shields stormed around the course in 12.38s. recording the fastest time of all legs, followed by Alex Stapleton 13.50s. and James Vaughan 13.28s. The team were crowned champions ahead of Wreake & Soar Valley by a margin of 13 seconds.

“B” team also impressed finishing in 8th place with a time of 41.47s. Sam McFall 13.35s. Dylan King 13.35s. and Jordan Fisher Brindle 14.37s. comprised this team. The “C” team also finished inside the top 20 teams. Conal Smith 14.23s. Henri Bedford 14.51s. and Aaron Warmington 15.53s. brought the team home in 19th place in a time of 45.07s.

The U17 men ”A” team were led off on the 1st leg by Ben Prince in 13.24s. followed by Nathan Casey 14.22s. (suffering throughout the course with a headache) and Michael Gayle gaining 7 places in 13.19s. the team finished in 16th place in a time of 41.05s. The  “B” team , Daniel Swain 14.05s. Jarred Malcom Roberts 13.36s. and Hugo Villabos Finigan 15.27s. were 23rd in a time of 43.08s.

Silas Goshawk ran a single “C” team leg in a time of 14.27s.

Some very pleasing performances today from Birchfield’s young athletes. On this showing they will be a force to be reckoned with in the future.

Well done to all,

Report by Tony Frain


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