CROSS COUNTRY: Harriers remain on course for honours

Flo Brill
Flo Brill
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Nene Valley Harriers are rapidly becoming the team to beat in The North Midlands League after another fine showing in the penultimate fixture of the season at Heanor on Saturday.

The muddy Shipley Park course seemed to suit the Nene Valley ladies and they remain in contention for end-of-season honours in all age groups from under-13 upwards.

The under-15 girls finished second on the day and sit second in the team standings.

Flo Brill ran well to take fifth place, receiving sterling support from Katie Tasker and Elisha Foord.

Lottie Hemmings secured fifth place for the under-13 girls, two positions ahead of Chelsea Bole, as Josie Knight finished 12th.

Spalding-based Grace Mullins was delighted to finish as sixth senior woman.

Peterborough AC’s Sarah Caskey was hot on her heels just seven seconds further back.

Nene Valley grouped well further down the field with Emma Randle 25th, Sophie Wilkinson-Hargate 28th and Lindsay Lister 32rd.

The Harriers were fourth on the day and now lie fifth overall.

They cemented third place in the veterans’ standings.

The under-17 girls are still in with a chance of winning the league, currently second behind Derby.

Josie Fortune and Amber Park had solid runs, finishing sixth and eighth respectively, while Hannah Ray closed the scoring team with 17th place.

Evie Hemmings was the only Nene Valley athlete contesting the under-11 race and had one of her best runs to date – coming home 10th out of 29 youngsters.

Hugo Brill provided one of the day’s highlights, finishing as runner-up in the boys’ under-13 race.

Harry Hewitt came in sixth with Kyle Warner completing the scorers.

The boys secured second place behind Derby.

Aaron Hunt led the Nene Valley charge at under-17 level with seventh place, helping his team to fourth, one below their overall spot.

The under-15 boys’ race saw Sam Oakley in 13th and Harvey Hancock in 19th help Nene Valley finish fifth in a closely-fought contest.

Felix Bowling made light work of the thick mud in 15th for the under-11 boys.

Peterborough AC again highlighted their strength in the senior men’s race, coming third and retaining second place in the league.

Nene Valley were led home by Mike Chapman, who took 57th place.

Meanwhile, Brad Spurdens had a good weekend at the Sheffield Open Indoor Meeting, finishing runner-up in his 600m race with a 1:26.01 clocking.

Spurdens also had a go at the 300m, finishing fourth in 38.89.

Nene Valley under-15 pair Jose Downer and William Kong recorded 60m personal bests at The Lee Valley Open Meeting.

Downer ran a time of 8.56 while Kong won his race with a 7.47 clocking.

Spalding’s Charlotte Taylor was able to put her Liverpool cross country disappointment behind her after the England selectors picked her for this weekend’s European Cross Country Championship in Slovakia.

The talented Nene Valley Harrier has been setting the USA college circuit alight with her impressive form this season.

This clearly had not gone unnoticed by the national selectors, who handed Taylor a first senior cross country outing for her country.