Sat 8 Feb 2020, Blackpool
There were blustery conditions for the Mid Lancs cross country league fixture at Lawson`s Ground, Blackpool although the day stayed dry. The courses were flat, all on grass, and fairly fast going, with very few muddy areas. The wind did make it harder especially when the runners were going into the headwind in the less sheltered areas of the courses. Preston Harriers had a good turnout across all the age group races and there were some notable performances. The ladies recorded a fine team win in Division One and they were led home by Jamie Robinson in an excellent 4th spot. Katey Foster was 14th & Anna Cooke, running her first club country cross race, was 29th out of 134 finishers.
In the under 11 boys, Eddie Chandler continued to place highly in his races, finishing in 4th place, with Lucas Coke and Oscar Bennion running well too. Poppi Watson was 4th in the under 13 girls race and Ava Jones 15th. Lewis Townley in the under 13 boys event had another strong outing, finishing in 2nd place behind Southport`s Monty Barr. With Sam Smalley 8th & Matthew Clark 12th, the boys were 2nd placed team behind Trawden. Isabelle Cunningham also took a 2nd place spot, and this was in the under 15 girls race – the team also finished 2nd, with Grace Rayner 6th & Emily Knell 14th. Jessica Lane was 28th. In the under 15 boys race, there were four Harriers in the top ten, with Daniel Valentine a very good 2nd, Louie Clark 3rd, Billy Reid 8th & Jenson Warren 10th. But there were also fine contributions from George Denye, Valdimir Wiggins, Ben Dilworth and Harry Hutchinson. The dominant performance of the day came from Max Cunningham in the under 17 mens race. The u17 men run with the senior ladies and he was well clear of everyone and finished just over a minute ahead of second placed Sam McSherry of Leven Valley AC.
The final race of the day was the senior men’s race, over four long laps. Simon Collins was 16th and Andy Whalley 34th and the other A team counters were Mariusz Kovacs, Gethin Butler, Alex Venables and Gary Wilson. The race winner was Alasdair Russell (Kendal AC). The numbers overall were slightly down on the last fixture at Burnley, and with the prospect of the impending Storm Ciara, perhaps some people were put off as the forecast a few days previously had been for stronger winds and rain. The final league fixture is at Ryelands Park, Lancaster on Saturday 29th February.