Maria flys the flag at Counties

A small contingent of harriers made their way across the county to one of the more notable cross country courses on the northern circuit, Blackburn's Whitton Park, a factor further enhanced by snow, hail & heavy rain on the proceeding days to ensure mud provided a true test of winter sporting character.

The ladies set out first with 3 laps of 'the saucer' hill, an upward trajectory farming track which decends into the familiar slew and slurry of mud to test the confidence of any athlete, at any level.

Maria Cook Lancashire County Championship Cross Country 2022 Skelmersdale Boundary Harriers Gold Medal
Maria Cook Lancashire Championship XC 2022

Maria Cook is one such athlete who has

seen a confidence growth over the past 12 months and at the first chance to 'mix it' for 2022 at county level, didn't disappoint with an assured, well paced and strong performance to finish 9th overall, taking home a gold medal for the vet45 category and a first senior county representation invitation, not just individually, but also for the club, a notable achievement that will no doubt inspire others in the years ahead. {Inter counties is currently scheduled for March 12th at Loughborough}.

Tanya Foley strode home in a very respectable 34th closely followed by Anna Williams in 41st, both demonstrating new found strength and ability both through the hills and subsequent depths of mud

In the Mens race, it was left to Kevin Walker, as the sole club representative, to fight through the deteriating mud to finish in a highly respectable 58th (8th vet45) within a very talented field.


Earlier on Saturday there was a 2nd place overall for Paul Mason and a 2nd Female place for Nicola Hayes at a very wet Tawd Valley Parkrun supported by volunteers Jane Woodburn, Paul Cotterill, Andy Dalton, Dan Gilbody & Hamda Sandison. Whilst over at Ormskirk, Jean Mitchell continued her return from injury with a 1st placed vet70 followed by the evergreen Bobby Lang finishing first in the vet75 category, whilst Anna Williams and Vince Creamer attended in voluteer roles.

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Sunday saw equal amounts of mud and possibly even more water at Cheshire's Delamere Trail Half and 10k.

In the 10k Nick Paul lead the club home in 38th (6th Vet50), in what was his first trail race outing, followed by Peter Wilkinson in 48th (2nd Vet60) and Karolina Faithful, in her first ever club vest outing, 37th (15th Vet40).

Over in the Half Marathon route, further bogs and inclines awaited but nothing could stop the SBH contingent lead home by Phil Derry in 15th (2nd Vet40), closely chased by Luke Wills returning from injury in 18th, Peter Carney in 94th, Graham Dowling in 197th, Craig Warwick in 209th and Mark Georgeson in 231st. Nicola Spafford was the solo female representative in the Half finishing in 45th.




 


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