Twenty West Suffolk athletes helped Suffolk to their eighth successive victory in the Anglian Schools Cross Country Championships.
West Suffolk Athletics Club (WSAC) — who boasted individual winners in Lauren Murphy and Sophie Tooley — also had three representing Cambridgeshire and one running for Norfolk at a muddy Abington Park in Northampton at the weekend.
In the minor girls’ race, Libby Walshe was 10th overall and fifth Suffolk finisher, while Alana Wilson placed 36th — third Norfolk runner.
Niall Ackroyd continued his return to form with a hard-run 10th (fifth Cambs) in the junior boys’ race, while Tommy Martin was a little below his best in 59th for Suffolk and Thomas McCarthy had to pull out.
Lauren Murphy was a superb winner of the junior girls’ race for Cambridgeshire, while Olivia Allum overcame her customary slow start to move through the field to finish a strong eighth (third Suffolk).
Despite suffering with a cold, Megan Newton fought her way to ninth (fourth Suffolk), with Rebecca Daniel (11th overall, third Cambs) and Mikayela Sealby (19th, fifth Suffolk) close behind.
Claudia Spencer-Hall improved on her previous race with a solid 30th (ninth Suffolk).
Katrina Kemp (32nd, 10th Suffolk) and Polly Peate (35th, 11th Suffolk) completed the WSAC runners.
Matt Le Poidevin (15th, fourth Suffolk) and Adam Crawford (35th, 11th Suffolk) competed in the inter boys’ race.
Sophie Tooley notched up her fourth Anglian Schools title for Suffolk in winning the inter girls’ race, but was made to work all the way to the line by her WSAC teammate Charlotte Murphy, who was representing Cambridgeshire.
Holly Davies was hampered by a niggling hip injury, but persevered to 18th (fifth Suffolk).
Emily Moyes was 21st (sixth Suffolk) and Bronwyn Jacobs aggravated an existing injury, forcing her to pull out.
Suffolk dominated the senior boys’ race with six runners in the first eight places.
WSAC’s Michael Bartram led the Suffolk team home in second, Seb Anthony worked hard for eighth (sixth Suffolk) and Cameron McKie was 26th (ninth Suffolk)
Beth Tooley was the lone WSAC runner in the senior girls’ race and came home 16th (fourth Suffolk).
All the athletes face in anxious wait to see if they have done enough to secure their selection for the English Schools Championships.
n At the British Universities Cross Country Championships (BUCS), WSAC athletes had mixed results.
Mac Delo was an excellent 12th from almost 370 runners in the men’s B race, while Tom Eames was 55th.
Justine Anthony was 50th in the women’s race.