Nene Valley Harriers started 2015 in fine form with success at the Lincolnshire County Cross County Championships on Sunday.
Harriers shook off their Christmas and New Year cobwebs and got down to business at Riseholme, bringing back a good haul of medals alongside some very close misses.
The wet and frosty course was not a deterrent to Harriers’ senior ladies squad of Philippa Taylor, Cat Foley and Charlotte Taylor who demolished rival Lincolnshire club sides to lift the title.
Philippa showed her masters status by running in the younger age group and winning the race comfortably ahead of team-mate and 2013 world under-20 triathlon champion Charlotte Taylor.
The Taylors were supported by Cat Foley who made up for an unfortunate fourth place by winning team gold.
Alex Hampson, Bradley Spurdens and Niam Payne emulated the ladies in the under-17 men’s event, with Hampson running most of the race on his own to win almost as comfortably as Philippa had on the same course, at the same time.
Harriers were only split by one Lincoln Wellington athlete, with Bradley Spurdens claiming bronze and Niam Payne finishing fourth. The B team were included at the end as Nathanial Taylor came fifth, Michael Cawood sixth and Austin Herbert seventh to give Harriers both gold and silver team awards.
In contrast, Harriers didn’t field a team in the under-20 men’s race but did take silver and bronze through Jake Richardson and James McCrae respectively.
Other Harriers to impress were Ethan Ellison who claimed individual silver, William Wright (fourth), Elliott Bellamy (eighth), Ethan’s sister Megan Ellison who matched her brother’s feat to win silver and Alice Callcutt (fourth).
Megan and Alice teamed up with Paula Naylor (12th) to win team gold, while the under-15 boys took team silver through Nathan Davey (fourth), Keilin Spurdens (tenth), Bradley Allen (11th) and Oliver Smith (12th) who just missed out on a team medal himself.
Finally, Hermoine Wright finished a very creditable seventh in the under-17 ladies race to add to her success at the 2014 Boston Sports Awards where she was named both Junior Sportswoman and Overall Achiever of the Year.