Prestwold Hall, 12/3/22
The UK Inter-Counties XC Championships (including the British Athletics XC Challenge) drew some of the best XC runners from across the UK to Prestwold Hall, Loughborough, on Saturday, March 12th. With up to 40 County/Regional teams participating the quality of competition was as always extremely high.
In the weeks following the County and Area Championships a number of runners became unavailable through injury, illness, or other reasons, weakening the pool of available athletes for final selection. In the circumstances our teams performed well as those present stepped up to the challenge on freshly designed new courses.
At Senior level, the Men’s team (whittled down to just six runners on the day) all completed to finish 12th (just failing to register three consecutive top 10 finishes). The team was admirably led in by our County Men’s Champion Alastair Watson, who finished 11th (a step up of 5 positions compared to 2020). Also recording a top 100 finish was Harry Lupton (making his county debut) in 34th position. … The Senior Women’s team finished in 24th place, with Emily Smith (101st) and Amy Jackson (115th) leading the way.
In the younger age group races our U15 Girls’ team excelled with a 7th place team finish (our highest team position on the day). The team was led in by Shaikira King, who just missed out on an individual medal with a 4th place finish. Shaikira was followed in by: Rebecca Van Aaardt (35th); Rosie Ashmore (58th); & Imogen Saunders (100th). There was a strong performance from our U13 Girls’ team (14th), with both Violet Rudkin (15th) and Luan Power (16th) featuring prominently. Our U17 Women’s team finished 33rd, with Amelie McCann (124th) leading the way; whilst Lexie McLoughlin excelled with a 41st place finish in the U20 Women’s race (no team finish).
The U13 Boys (28th), U15 Boys (36th), and U17 Men (34th) teams were the hardest hit by withdrawals. U13 Boy Edward Orchard (97th) secured a top 100 finish, whilst the U15 Boys and Under 17 Men’s team were respectively led in by Joe Matthews (174th) and Lachlan Finch (126th). The Under 20 Men’s team finished in a very respectable 15th position, with Joseph O’Connell (32nd) – making his county debut – leading the team in. Behind Joseph, both Colin Foord (88th) and Adam Barber (100th) secured top 100 finishes.
As Team Managers we would like to ‘thank’: the athletes for conducting themselves in an exemplary manner throughout the day; and Simon Mayes (West End Runners) for providing the County with 2 tents on the day. … Alan (who had to attend a family wedding) would also like to personally thank Iain Barber (U20 Men) and Tony Forryan (Senior Men) for stepping in and fulfilling his Team Manager duties on the day.
Full results can be found here: https://results.sporthive.com/events/6907000954898446080
Alan Maddocks / Bilal Farah / Bill Winter / Lisa Douglas / & Wayne Walker. (Leicestershire & Rutland County XC Team Managers)
County Cross Country Championships
Burbage Common, 8/1/22
Race 1: U17 Women
Elsie Robinson took a decisive victory, defending the title she won in 2020. Amelie McCann was clear in second, with lower age U17 Isabella Wrightam taking the bronze. There was a fantastic scrap for the team gold with the Charnwood trio of Amelie McCann, Sophie Dunbobbin and Gracie-Rose Walters edging it by a single point from Wreake & Soar Valley (Isabella Wrightam, Lyla Bryan and Cassandra Dodge).
Race 2: U13 Girls
Wreake & Soar Valley dominated the race, supplying the first four finishers and twelve in total. Violet Rudkin took a tight victory over Luan Power, with Sian Evans come home for bronze and completing a perfect team score of 6.
Race 3: U13 Boys
Joshua Adkin defended his U13 title, but he was made to work by newcomer Miles Willetts of Stilton Striders, who finished a strong second. Archie Clarke of Wreake & Soar Valley held off the Owls duo of Edward Orchard and Harry Campion for third. Charnwood (Joshua Adkin, Jacob Duncombe and Olly Lockton) edged a very well contested team competition from Wreake & Soar Valley (Archie Clarke, Jake Tyrrell and Ewan McKittrick) and Owls (Edward Orchard, Harry Campion and Charlie Allen).
Race 4: U20/Senior/Masters Women
The combined race was well contested, with the first four separated by less than twenty seconds. The overall County title went to Justine Anthony, adding to the 10K road title that she won in December after committing to her new county. Runner-up Emily Smith added another silver to the one she won in 2015, just holding off the challenge of the U20 gold medallist Emma Richards, with senior bronze medallist Hannah Seager close behind. U20 silver went to Katie Parker and bronze to Bethany Wallis. The Masters title was won by triathlete Clare Shea-Simonds, who added a gold to her county medal collection, with Kristie Matthiae taking silver and Clare McKittrick bronze.
Senior team gold was won by Charnwood (Hannah Seager, Ella Taylor and Elaine Seager) and silver went to Huncote (Gill Bland, Sarah Pegg and Sophie Cook). Wreake & Soar Valley (Laura Storer, Nicola McGlinchey and Claire Bryan) took Masters gold with Hinckley (Kelly Wilson, Karolina Bruska and Patricia Holland) in second and Desford (Linda Whitelegg, Jo Fluke and Amy Miller) third.
Race 5: U15 Girls
Shaikira King took victory in the U15 race as Wreake & Soar Valley swept the board. The English Schools 1500m champion was joined on the podium by Rebecca Van Aardt and Rosie Ashmore.
Race 6: U15 Boys
The U15 title went to William Ronald of Corby AC. Behind him, Seth Lawrance of Owls held off the late challenge of Coritanian’s Finlay Friedersdorff for silver. Owls strong showing gave them team gold (Seth Lawrance, Harry Rainbow and Alex Howard) ahead of Wreak & Soar (Joe Matthews, Josh Hatherley and Louie Paddison).
Race 7: U17 Men
Charlie Neece of Wreake & Soar Valley took a dominant victory but the battle for the remaining podium places was much closer fought, with three athletes in contention. At the end of 5km of racing, Joel Sharman of Race Rapid came away with silver and Lachlan Finch of Saffron AC the bronze. Daniel Van Aardt of Wreake & Soar Valley was the athlete to miss out, but he had the compensation of winning a team gold, alongside winner Neece and fifth place finisher Mackenzie Bloxham.
Race 8: U20/Senior/Masters Men
For Alastair Watson, victory was the only thing on his mind as he eschewed the safe option of entering as a Master. At the end of the first of three laps, he had a small lead over Tom Mahon. The Notts AC athlete made a decisive move during the subsequent lap and held almost a minute advantage at the line. Third over the line was international triathlete Tim Don who took a comfortable Masters Gold. Fourth to finish was U20 champion Adam Barber, with the Harborough AC man adding another gold to his growing collection of county medals. Pascal Bouttier-Butler took the Senior bronze and Tony Woodward Masters silver. Joseph O’Connell made it a Harborough 1,2 in the U20s, with Tom Hattee of Corby taking bronze. The final medal, the Masters bronze, came down to a contest between two evergreen county favourites, with Phil Critchlow of Beaumont eventually proving too strong for Charnwood’s Mark Couldwell.
Owls took senior team gold (Simon Allen, Luke Ingram, Scott Green, Bilal Farah and Lee O’Connor), continuing their dominance of the category. Tim Don lead a Barrow Runners team of Dan Robberts, Andy Simpson and Geoffrey Beetham to Masters gold, with Owls (Richard Wayman, Chris O’Neil, Craig Twigg and Russell Shute) taking silver and Race Hub (Duncan Shea-Simonds, Stephen Jelly, Nick Cook and Steve Doores) bronze.
2021 County 10K Road Race Championships: December 12th, 2021
Mallory Park hosted our final County Road Race Championships of 2021. The pattern of the race was soon established as the leading man and leading woman surged to race winning leads on the opening lap of six circuits. The Men’s race was dominated by Jordan Rowe (Thames Valley Harriers), a Loughborough resident, who had featured prominently in the European XC Trials at Liverpool just a fortnight earlier. Jordan stretched his lead throughout crossing the line in a time of 30 minutes & 41 seconds to clinch his inaugural Leicestershire & Rutland County title. Tony Woodward (Notts AC), fresh from a 2-24 top 20 finish at the London Marathon, took County Silver in 32-21. Close behind, Luke Ingram (OWLS AC) got the better of a fine tussle with David Robertson (Leicester Coritanian AC) to take the County Bronze in 32-48. The Masters Gold was secured by Fraser Harris (Hermitage Harriers) in 38-29; whilst Zach Spence (Wreake & Soar Valley AC) took the U20M Gold in 39-09. Zach has supported the vast majority of our County Championship events this year and should be commended for his persistence. The women’s race was once more poorly supported by County runners, leading to medals going spare. Justine Anthony (Cambridge & Coleridge AC), another Loughborough resident, took Gold with a dominant display clocking a more than respectable time of 37 minutes & 00 seconds. The only other County female finisher was Gracie-Rose Walters (Charnwood AC) who clocked 46-09 to claim the individual Silver and the U20W Gold. The County Association once more wish to extend our gratitude to the race organiser (Rob Osborn of Race Rapid) whose on-going support over the past two years has enabled us to offer both a 5K and 10K (2020 & 2021) Road Race Championships at this challenging time for the sport.
2021 County Road Race Championships: October 31st, 2021.
Wet and windy weather added an additional challenge to the Leicestershire & Rutland Road Race Championship events held on Sunday, October 31st.
County 5K Road Race Championships
At Mallory Park, the County 5K Road Race Championships featured within the day’s competitions organised by Race Rapid. The Men’s race came down to a sprint finish along the home straight with Adam Barber (Harborough AC) just holding off David Robertson (Leicester Coritanian AC) for the County title by less than a second with both clocking a highly respectable time of 15 minutes & 13 seconds in the prevailing conditions. Just two seconds down (15-15) Tom Mahon (Wreake & Soar Valley AC) took the individual Bronze. Adam also secured the Junior Men’s Gold, whilst Mark Powell (Leicester Coritanian AC) (16-31) was the leading Masters finisher. The Women’s race was by comparison more clear-cut with Stephanie Lawrie (Kettering Town Harriers AC) claiming the County title in a time of 18-24, with Isabella Wrightam (Wreake & Soar Valley AC) (19-40) and Gracie-Rose Walters (Charnwood AC) (21-39) claiming Silver & Bronze. Isabella also secured the Junior Women’s Gold. There were no finishers in the Masters Women category.
County Half-Marathon Championships
The County Half Marathon Road Race Championships were held within the Leicester Half-Marathon starting and finishing at Victoria Park, Leicester. Facing the worst of the day’s weather it was Leicester Coritanian AC’s Pascal Bouttier-Butler (74-27) that secured the County title, with the 22-year-old taking over 6 minutes from his previous best time. The remaining individual medals were claimed by Jason Barton (Stilton Striders) (76-46) and Gurmit Singh (78-44). Gurmit also claimed the Masters Gold with Toby Ward (Hinckley RC) (79-36) taking the Junior Gold. In the Women’s event the County medals were awarded to: Rebecca Randell (Shepshed RC) (82-48); Emily Hall (West End Runners) (90-22); and Sarah Horner (West End Runners) (92-02). The Women’s Masters Gold was awarded to Mika Mihell (Wigston Phoenix RC), who recorded a time of 98-54.
The County Association wish to extend our thanks to the organisers of the above events for so kindly hosting our Championships.