Individual performances not enough for Harriers' team glory
A group of Alnwick Harriers made the trip to Thornley Hall Farm, near Peterlee, to take part in the third of the six 2016/17 North East Harrier League cross-country fixtures on Saturday
There were some brilliant individual performances, however, due to the distances involved, the team captains always knew that good team results at this fixture would be difficult to achieve. And so it proved.
The day got off to a cracking start with Max Murray John bolting up in the Boys’ Under 11s race, whilst Jo Gascoigne-Owens, Rachelle Falloon and David Milne were the stars in the Senior races.
Not content with his two recent fourth place cross-country finishes, Max Murray John went off hard from the start of the race and didn’t slow down. The longer than normal U11 race suited Max well and it was a convincing win.
Teammate Harris Hall wasn’t too far behind, and Tess Hindmarsh, who was the only Alnwick girl to compete in this category, ran well to finish 24th.
The U13 boys and girls both fielded full teams. Owen Douglas was first counter for the boys, with Joseph Godden running from the Fast Pack less than a minute behind. Joe Hemsley and Finlay Telfer finished third and fourth for the club.
In the girls’ race Ellie Henderson from the Fast Pack was first Harrier home, with Maddy Hall and Anna Grace Harvey second and third counters.
The U15 boys had an excellent race, coming second overall and achieving their highest team placing in recent times. Led home by Ollie Telfer, who finished sixth overall, the boys ran well as a team.
Ben Murray John and Alex Threlfall were second and third counters, with Barnabas Harvey just behind.
Callie Henderson ran an excellent race, again finishing sixth overall from the Fast Pack.
Sophie Enser ran another good race this week in the U17 category and it was good to see her joined by Jess Duffy for her first race of the season.
Boys’ Under 11s: 1 Max Murray John 8.15; 35 Harris Hall 10.13.
Girls’ Under 11s: 24 Tess Hindmarsh 10.46.
Boys’ Under 13s: 35 Owen Douglas 15.40 (S); 48 Joseph Godden 16.24 (F); 55 Joe Hemsley 17.07 (S); 64 Finlay Telfer 20.04 (S).
Girls’ Under 13s: 26 Ellie Henderson 16.46 (F); 34 Maddy Hall 17.25 (S); 45 Anna Grace Harvey 18.50 (S).
Boys’ Under 15s: 6 Ollie Telfer 13.27 (S); 14 Ben Murray John 13.55 (S); 18 Alex Threlfall 14.12 (S) 21 Barnabus Harvey 14.20 (S).
Girls’ Under 15s: 7 Callie Henderson 15.36 (F).
Girls Under 17/20s: 27 Sophie Enser 21.44 (S); 40 Jess Duffy 27.06 (S).
For the Seniors the highest placed finisher was new recruit David Milne, who battled through the mud and hills to place a brilliant fourth from the Slow Pack.
Graham Simpson, who travelled all the way from Berwick to take part, was the second counter from the Medium Pack.
Jon Duffy and Dean Stackhouse had a good battle and finished within a few seconds of each other, whilst Paul Godden and Mark Doctor were the other counters.
With lots of the usual runners unable to make the long journey the Senior Men finished a disappointing, but not entirely unexpected, ninth of the 11 teams in Division 2.
This has seen Alnwick drop from top spot to fourth in the overall league with three fixtures left.
The Senior Women finished eighth of 10 teams in the top flight on the day and are now eighth overall at the mid-way point in the season.
Jo Gascoigne-Owens ran her usual excellent race from the Fast Pack to finish 16th overall, whilst Rachelle Falloon again travelled from Cambridge to take part and finished 20th from the Medium Pack, which means she races the remaining fixtures this season from the Fast Pack.
Diana Weightman ran well from the Slow Pack to finish 79th of just over 300 runners, with Lynne Bannister the fourth and final counter. Well done to Helen Dickinson who also took part.
Senior Men: 4 David Milne 37.28 (S); 60 Graham Simpson 41.44 (M); 152 Jon Duffy 43.57 (S); 160 Dean Stackhouse 44.10 (S); 253 Paul Godden 46.21 (S); 320 Mark Doctor 49.49 (S).
Senior Women: 16 Jo Gascoigne-Owens 31.12 (F); 20 Rachelle Falloon 31.29 (M); 79 Diana Weightman 33.44 (S); 178 Lynne Bannister 37.13 (S); 235 Helen Dickinson 40.06 (S).
• Earlier in the day Phil Hall was first across the line at the Druridge Bay Parkrun, a feat he’s achieved three times now.
He crossed the line in 19.18, 40 seconds ahead of the second finisher Peter Grey. Neil Hamilton was Alnwick’s third finisher in ninth place.
For the ladies, Christine McAllister was first to finish, ahead of Ruth Doctor and Jayne McKenna.
Results: 1 Phil Hall 19.18 (71.76%); 2 Peter Grey 19.58 (79.63%); 9 Neil Hamilton 21.11; 45 Christine McAllister 25.31; 53 Kim Bronze 26.03 (58.48%); 71 Ruth Doctor 27.22 (57.06%); 116 Jayne McKenna 32.57; 117 Pam Wheldon 32.58; 118 Ed Wheldon 32.59; 121 Melanie Buchanan 33.05; 126 Nell Gair 35.26.
Elsewhere, Robert Stephenson and mum Lorna took part at South Shields, Richard Eastor was at Workington, Stuart Bruce ran at Gibside, and Mike Henry was at Keswick, where he won the male 65 category.