ATHLETICS: Girl power brings back medals

Megan Ellison, Josie Fortune, Ellie Piccaver
Megan Ellison, Josie Fortune, Ellie Piccaver
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Nene Valley’s girls went on a medal winning spree in the final North Midlands Cross Country League fixture of the season at Wollaton Park in Nottingham on Saturday.

The under-17s won all four meetings held throughout the winter, comfortably winning the team prize.

Lloyd Kempson

Lloyd Kempson

To cap a successful season Megan Ellison finished second in the individual performers stakes, picking up her silver medal at the meeting.

Ellison came home fifth on the day and received sterling support from Josie Fortune (7th) and Ellie Piccaver (10th).

The senior ladies had a pair of medal winners in their ranks with Ruth Jones securing the series silver medal in the over-35 age group and Sophie Wilkinson-Hargate picking up bronze as an over-40. Louise Blake in 25th was the first Harrier home at Nottingham with Jones hot on her heels in 28th.

Lottie Hemmings was also among the medals, finishing third over-13 in the series standings. Hemmings came home 12th at Nottingham, three places behind team-mate Sophie Reeves.

The under-13 girls won team bronze to reward their efforts throughout the season.

The under-15 girls also finished third as Amber Park (5th), Katie Tasker (10th) and Hannah Knight (14th) all had pleasing runs on the day.

Nora Brill led the under-11s home by finishing seventh but the team were out of the medals.

Although slightly overshadowed by the girls, the Nene Valley boys won team bronze at under-13, under-15 and under-17 level.

Sam Oakley was third in the under-13 race with his brother Ollie 14th in the under-17 event.

Bradley Allan in 12th was the first Harrier over the line for the under-17s.

Owen Willgroom ran well, coming home 15th for the under-15s while Jack Haunch led the under-11s challenge in 16th.

Lloyd Kempson has spent the last year in Australia and has recently been altitude training at over 5,000 feet in the Victoria Alps.

The 23-year-old landed nine hours before the senior men’s race began. Despite a lack of sleep he showed that the Australian lifestyle and training regime had suited him well as he finished sixth in a strong field.

He completed the 10k course in 35:35, over a minute quicker than last year and five positions higher.

Alex Hampson was 33rd in the 275-strong field with Michael Channing 40th.

The senior Nene Valley men finished the season in fourth.