CROSS COUNTRY: Rugby & Northampton AC

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Victory for ladies’ team

MIDLAND WOMENS CROSS COUNTRY LEAGUE

GLOUCESTER January 16

The Ladies’ team from Rugby & Northampton AC took victory in Division 2 of the Midland Womens Cross Country League held at Gloucester.

Rebecca Leadbeater improved by seventeen places from the previous race to lead home the club for the first time with the 18-year-old finishing in 22nd place in a time of 23 mins 59 secs in the combined race of both divisions and fourth in the under 20 event. Her junior team mate Emma Bond made the top two for the club for the third time in a row to finish 42nd with 25:03 and Sarah Bennett followed her home with a seasons best 58th position on 25:43.

Completing the team was veteran athlete Tamara Hardman with a best ever 60th spot to record 25:45 to clinch the club’s second win in the division, which puts them in strong contention for promotion.

Two Juniors had good runs with Bethan Goddard (26:45) for 75th and Tilly Lea (27:20) with her highest placing of the season in 92nd.

Ten times World Masters Champion Angela Copson also made the top 100 in 96th place with 27:31 and exactly one minute behind was Lorna Latimer (127th).

The 12 strong squad was completed by four veterans with Helen Jones on 29:21 for 148th , then Kate Williams just two seconds and two places adrift, followed by newcomer Zoe Shepherd (167th in 30:08) and Minerva Chesser ( 177th in 30:28).

The fourth and final race of the series will be held jointly with the Men’s Birmingham League at Wolverhampton on February 13th.

BIRMINGHAM CROSS COUNTRY LEAGUE DIVISION 1

COVENTRY January 16

Robert Male recorded his highest ever placing in Division One of the Birmingham Cross Country League when he led home Rugby & Northampton AC for the first time in 58th place. He covered the 5.5 mile three lap course at Coventry’s Coundon Hall Park in 30 mins 51 secs.

The squad finished in 12th spot on the day from the 16 competing teams and lie 12th overall.

Two veterans raced it out for the next club places with Brendan Moen in 107th position finishing one place ahead of Mike Andrews with times of 32:42 and 32:43 respectively.

Alistair McDonnell crossed the line in 118th on 33:12 and was followed by new member Adnan Haq making the team on his debut with 33:27 for 123rd and closing out the scoring six was Joe Lantsbery two places behind on 33:29.

The B team finished in 8th spot on the day and Pete Belfield just edged out Richard Latimer by one place and three seconds with the latter recording 34:06 for a best ever 141st.

Veterans Nigel Roberts ( 34.37) and Vince Carroll (34.41 ) finished 159th and 161st respectively and Junior Alastair Gardner achieved his highest position in 176th with 35:11.

Just four days after celebrating his 40th birthday Jonathan Taylor completed the B team in 190th position (35:56). They are now 6th in the league table after three matches.

Five other athletes took part for the club with London Marathon bound Pete Thomas recording 36:09 for 195th and Terry Egan completing his 112th league race in 214th spot (37:45).

Junior Oliver Harvey was four seconds behind in 215th and highest positions were achieved by Dave O’Leary (218th in 38:07) and Adrian Reast (233rd in 41:20).