HALLAMSHIRE Harriers gave a superb display to win the women’s team race at the National Cross Country Championships at Parliament Hill, London.
The race was won by Gemma Steel (Charnwood), the form athlete of the winter, who beat Steph Twell (Aldershot). Hallamshire’s Hatti Dean was expected to challenge but she finished fifth. Just one place behind came teammate, Lizzie Adams.
Dean has been in the top echelons of distance running for years but the running of Adams, 25, this winter has been a revelation.
A good run by Nicola Squires kept Hallamshire on target. Squires has had a good season but no performance has been more crucial than her 35th place on Saturday. Hallamshire then had to wait for vital fourth counter in the shape of Claire Robson who arrived in 110th to give the Sheffield club victory over Bristol. Ruth Proctor was 119th for Hallam.
In the men’s race Keith Gerrard (Essex) beat defending champion Steve Vernon (Stockport) with Leeds retaining their team title. Hallamshire, led by Rob Little in 62nd place, finished 16th. There other counters were Joe Gratton, Tom Jenkins, Andy Challenger, John Rocke and Pete Hodges.
In the u17 women’s race Hallam’s Natalia Hackett and Fiona Bell notched ninth and 10th places respectively, Hackett getting home a second ahead of her team mate whilst at u13 level Imani Wilson finished an excellent 15th. With her team mates Mary McCarthy, 30th, and Maddy Pearce, 31st, also running well, Hallamshire were sixth in the team race.
Adam Hague (Dearne) was in form at the English Junior Indoors at Birmingham winning the u17 pole vault. Chesterfield’s Edward Selvey took bronze. There was a win in the u15 800 metres for Hallam’s Essa Ahmed. Other medallists included Aiden Davies (Doncaster) 3rd u17 400 and Elliot Payne (Hallam), 3rd u17 high jump.
Hallam’s Calli Thackery won the 3000 metres at the British Students Championships.