ATHLETICS: Rugby & Northampton AC

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Young athletes second in cross country league meeting


The Athletics Club’s dominant West Midlands streak extended with second-place finish

Rugby & Northampton’s campaign in the West Midland Young Athletes’ Cross Country League began earlier this month in Warwick.

The Athletics Club entered the weekend’s meeting as champions for the past seven seasons and despite fielding a depleted team, performed well to finish second, only 23 points behind winners Wolverhampton & Bilston.

The team won four out of the eight races on the day. The club’s under-17 Men were dominant in claiming first place and the top three individual spots. Joshua Lay led the way to win the 4.8 kilometre U17 race in 16 minutes and 44 seconds, claiming the maximum 200 points, and was followed shortly after by Joe Musgrave (17:18) and Muss-Ab Hassan (17:23) in second and third respectively. Also inside the top 10 were Matthew Chronicle (17:29) in sixth and eighth-placed Rhys James (17:42).

Team victories were also enjoyed by the U11 Boys and Girls teams. Arthur Tilt (5:38) led home the U11 Boys team finishing in second place over the 1.6k course. Two places further back was Luke Turner (5:47), and Jenson Buttrick (5:52) completed the trio inside the top 10, finishing in sixth. The scoring team was rounded off by Ethan Masters (6:14) and Louis Starr (6:14) in 23rd and 24th respectively, in a 106-runner field.

Five U11 Girls achieved top-20 positions with Georgia Tomczyk (11th), Georgia Gercs (12th), Grace Darcy (15th) and Olivia Willison (16th) all finishing in 6:33, while Jemima Lily Lambert (6:44) crossed the line in 20th.

Noah Bennett (9:13) was the first U13B home, in fifth, as the team also took the win. In seventh was Louis Buttrick (9:19) while Aidan O’Brien (9:36) and Henry Woodward (9:37) finished 17th and 18th in the 2.5k race. The scoring team was rounded off by Finlay Heard (10:05) in 29th place.

Molly Williams (13:03) was runner-up in the 3.2k U15G competition and she was joined in the top 10 by Lucy Stevens (eighth, 13:48) and Abigail Pearce (ninth, 13:53). The streak of great runs continued as Holly Walker (14:09) finished 13th and Amelia McMurtrie (14:43) in 26th to help the overall U15G team place second.

The U15B race was won by Adam Caulfield who completed the 3.2k course in an impressive time of 11:09 to take a commanding 22-second victory. The next R&N athlete over the line was Ben Hope (12:23) in 12th and Cian Hutton (12:58) in 21st as the team claimed third place.

An enthusiastic U17 Girls team took fourth place thanks in no small part to Amy Walker’s (16:18) fifth-place finish. She was supported by Hollie Moore (17:14) and Olivia Sheehan (17:25) in 19th and 23rd respectively.

The U13 Girls finished sixth in their race. Olivia Williams (10:12) led the way for R&N in 12th, Mia Clark (11:04) was next to finish in 44th while Zoe Gardner (11:20) and Sophia Hill (11:24) claimed the 53rd and 55th places.