Manx Harriers at the English National Cross Country Championships

Manx Harriers have been attending these Championships for many years and had a decent turn out in the 130th event at Wollaton Park, Nottingham on 25 February 2017.

David Mullarkey ran a great race to finish the under 17 mens race in 20th place and 7th North of England runner over the line. This was a great boost for David who was under par at the North of England Champs a month ago. He now joins a very select group of Manx runners to finish in the first 20 at the English XC Champs. Hopefully this will set him up for a great run in the Inter Counties event next month. Also in this age group George Dickinson came 94th and Alex Bell 130th out of over 300 runners who completed the course on the day.

Laura Dickinson ran extremely well in the under 17 womens race to come home in 80th place out of the 252 finishers. She ran a very strong race gaining 40 places over the race showing excellent pacing and tenacity in the fast but muddy and undulating course. Katie Astin, recovering from injury, ran well to finish 44th in the under 20 womens event. She will improve over time as she gets more miles under her belt. Joe Ricciardi added to his triathlon training with a great run in the 10km Junior mens event to finish 181st.

Macy Hillier ran in the under 13 event and had a difficult day falling and then being spiked as other athletes could not avoid her. It was a difficult day for the promising young runner but will hopefully provide useful experience for the future as this will be the biggest cross country event of 2017 and certainly the biggest she has competed in so far.

Gail Griffiths in the Senior Women’s race ran on well to finish in 100th position out of nearly 800 runners. This is a remarkable run as an over 50 and also one that must rank as one of her best performances in the 10 years in which she has competed in this event. In the senior men’s event Stephen Garrett ran on well to finish strongly in 295th position out of the estimated 1700 competitors. Ollie Dickinson also ran well to finish in 793rd.

The team were pleased with some great runs and a number of them now look forward to the British/Inter Counties Championships on the 11 March 2017.

Andy Fox

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