A medal haul for club in county championships
West Suffolk Athletics Club’s cross country runners were in the medals at the Suffolk Cross Country Championships in Horringer on Sunday.
The weather was frosty at Ickworth Park and fog developed as the day went on, but West Suffolk’s runners battled through the gloom to bring home 15 medals.
The under-13 girls were just outside the team medals in fourth, with Jasmin Raja (11th), Chloe Cavill (12th), Alex Ginns (19th), Libby Stinson (25th), Alana Wilson (29th) and Melanie Freeman (38th).
Libby Walshe and Lydia Marshall both fell and had to withdraw.
Hayden Lawrence (seventh) had an excellent run as the under-13 boys won the silver medal and with another year in this age group should be an indi- vidual medal contender in 2016.
Adam Newton can also be happy with 10th, while Ewan Boyle and new members Reuben Witcherley and Joe Bradford all have two more years in this age group so 15th, 21st and 32nd respectively were excellent efforts.
West Suffolk won gold in the under-15 girls’ race and also filled the top two individual positions.
Rebecca Daniel caught long-time leader and teammate Megan Newton on the line for gold, while Olivia Allum was sixth and Polly Peate eighth.
Schools international pentathlete Katrina Kemp found the long hard course a real challenge, but persevered to a respectable 11th
Claudia Spencer-Hall and Mikayela Sealby, returning from injury, followed in 14th and 15th.
Thomas McCarthy was West Suffolk’s highest finisher in the under-15 boys’ race with eighth as they picked up the bronze medal.
Josh Walker was 15th, Tom Tallant 17th and Tommy Martin 19th.
Sophie Tooley was an easy winner of the under-17 women’s race with good support from Holly Davies (fourth), Emily Moyes (sixth) and Bronwyn Jacobs (seventh), ensuring team gold.
In the senior women’s race, Maureen McCarthy was fourth overall and first over-50 woman, while Christine Anthony was 12th and second over-50 woman.
Inese Avsejeva returned to competition from injury and a lack of training took its toll during the latter stages.
Nevertheless 19th from 70 finishers was a good effort and enough to secure team bronze.
A small turnout in the under-20 men’s race did not detract from a close duel between West Suffolk’s Michael Bartram and Seb Anthony with the former easing away in the closing stages.
Cameron McKie was very pleased with his run to fourth and team gold.
The largest field of the day saw 143 finishers in the senior men’s race.
West Suffolk’s Mac Delo was in the leading group from the start and broke away on the second of the three laps to record a comfortable win.
A terrific effort by Tom Eames placed him fifth, while former squad member Seb Palmer, now living in Rugby, was just behind in sixth.
The under-17 men were last to go and encountered the river crossing at its deepest.
While it was very entertaining for the spectators, the runners were less impressed in the freezing conditions.
Adam Crawford led home a West Suffolk quintet in sixth, closely followed by Jacob Freeborough (seventh) and Christy Williams (eighth) to secure team silver.
Chris Morton continued a steady return to form after a long injury lay-off with 10th and Ben Eames battled around to 13th despite his long-term health issue.
Over at the Cambridgeshire Championships, West Suffolk’s Lauren Murphy took gold in the under-15 girls’ event, while Niall Ackroyd was seventh in the under-15 boys’ event.