CROSS COUNTRY: Club's best performance in league for 11 years

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Rugby & Northampton AC

Birmingham Cross Country League, Division 1 - Telford

Rugby & Northampton Men's team finished in eighth place overall in Division 1 of the Birmingham Cross Country League after the fourth and final race hosted by Telford AC on Saturday. It marked their best performance for 11 years.

The 9k course around the grounds of Lilleshall National Sports Centre consisted of four laps and George Goodwin became only the third R&N athlete to make the top five when he recorded a time of 29:22 to clinch fifth place.

Dominic Jones, returning to his best form, chased him hard all the way and was 20 seconds adrift in seventh spot and he was followed by another impressive performance from Junior Haydn Arnall. After taking an emphatic victory two weeks earlier in the Three Counties Cross Country League the 19 year old achieved a best ever 31st position with 31:07.

Fellow U20 clubmate Finn Hutton clinched a top 100 place for the first time with 33:06 to claim 93rd, while Adnan Haq in his first outing of the season finished in 126th position on 34:16.

Completing the scoring six was debutant Duncan Birtwistle (133rd in 34:32).

Their ninth spot on the day was enough to maintain eighth position from 16 teams in the final standings.

The B team were led home by Zak Allen with a personal best 156th spot on 35:38 and 10th place on the day kept the team in 9th overall.

The rest of the squad included Junior Adrian Kaczmarek with a best of 163rd on 35:39, Vince Carroll (165th in 36:11), Adam Bebbington (U20 with 37:32 for a best of 177th), Oliver Harvey (PB of 186th in 37:58) and Terry Egan (210th in 40:17).

Midland Women’s Cross Country League, Division 2 - Gloucester

The R&N ladies team were at Gloucester for their final race in Division 2 of the Midland Women’s Cross Country League on Saturday.

Bethan Goddard completed a superb series by finishing in the top ten in all four races. She covered the tough 7k course in 33:46 for ninth place to successfully defend her R&N club title.

Next athlete over the line was Tilly Lea in 22nd spot on 34:39 for her best run of the season and the team was completed by two Junior athletes with Rhea Cooper (42nd in 37:35) and Olivia Sheehan (59th in 39:09). They finished ninth and tenth respectively in their age category.

The squad claimed fifth spot on the day and sixth overall.

The Masters team were seventh in the final standings and R&N had four athletes competing in Gloucester with Helen Jones (72nd in 39:52), Angela Copson (74th in 40:02), Minerva Chesser (80th in 40:36) and Kate Williams (85th in 41:18).