Our men’s team achieved an outstanding result at the ECCA Cross Country relays in Mansfield on Saturday, where the team of track specialists came home 35th out of 143 finishing teams.
Jamie Taylor-Caldwell continued the great form shown at the first Met League fixture, running the team’s fastest leg. He completed the first of the four 5km laps in 37th place, with a time of 16:10. (Needless to say, the photo wasn’t taken during the leg!)
800m specialist Ben Waterman then demonstrated the versatility of his talent by moving the team up three places: just half a minute slower than Jamie, he finished in 34th. Strong runs from Mo Hashi (17:26 ) and Chris Hepworth (17:14) maintained the pressure, with the loss of just one place over the last two legs. The result saw them finish 10 places higher than last year, despite missing the injured Sam Ashcroft, last year’s fastest runner. With Samir Haddad running an unofficial time of 17:11 in the incomplete B team, future places in the A team will be hotly contested.
In the younger age groups, the U17 squad of Mukhtar Farah, Charlie Sillett and Reece Farren finished 46th out of 63 complete teams. Mukhtar finished 45th with a 10:03 effort over 3km in the competitive first leg, Charlie then gained six places with 10:15. Reece (11:18) was competing for the first time in this age group, and could not hold off the strong opposition in the final leg.
It was a case of gaining valuable experience for the U15 boys’ squad. Luke Adar led the team out with a 7:35 opener over the 2km lap, followed by a fine first run from club novice Salman Chishti (7:26), while newcomer Zac Lyons (10:13) brought the team home.
The U15 girls fielded two full teams of three over the 2km course. The A team finished 50th of the 89 complete teams and the B team 76th, broadly consistent with last year’s performances. For the A team, Nicola Ravenhill got them off to a fine 38th place with a swift 7:42. Cameron Thomas (8:43) lost a few places, having moved up to the U15 age group, but Laura Stewart (8:08) regained some ground on the final leg. Maryam Hussain (8:25) ran a competitive first leg for the B team, backed up by Anisa Ibrahim (8:53) and Roisin Lynch (8:59).
Full results here