Har­ri­ers’ league sea­son ends with a flour­ish

Macclesfield Express - - MOTORS - CROSS-COUN­TRY SCOTT WIL­SON

WYTHEN­SHAWE Park was the venue for the fi­nal race in the Manch­ester area league sea­son.

The league has taken the Har­ri­ers all around the re­gion, in­clud­ing Sherd­ley Park in St He­lens and Manch­ester’s Bog­gart Hole Clough and Heaton Park.

There were ex­cel­lent con­di­tions on the day, es­pe­cially com­pared to the usual mud­bath of Manch­ester league venues. This made for a fast and in­ter­est­ing last race with ti­tles and fi­nal stand- ings still be­ing bat­tled for.

For some of the Har­ri­ers this was purely a good­bye to the cross-coun­try sea­son but many still had lots to fight for, es­pe­cially from the ladies’ ranks.

Un­der-13 girl Sian Hes­lop fin­ished off a fine sea­son with a fifth place on the day to claim third over­all. Also from the Un­der-13s Lu­cas Parker fin­ished his sea­son with a very cred­i­ble third place and sil­ver in the fi­nal stand­ings.

The Un­der-17s saw an im­pres­sive Louisa Whit­ting­ham have a resur­gent sec­ond half to the sea­son, fin­ish­ing sec­ond on the day and climb­ing up to sec­ond over­all. The sil­ver medal­list (top right) said: “The train­ing at Macclesfield Har­ri­ers has re­ally helped me to im­prove over the win­ter and I’m de­lighted to have fin­ished sec­ond. I’m now fo­cused on rep­re­sent­ing Macclesfield and Cheshire in the forth­com­ing na­tion­als.”

Many se­niors at­tended the fi­nal day.

The Har­ri­ers’ women were led in by Olivia Wal­wyn-Bush (29:57), sec­ond over­all and first fe­male Har­rier, fol­lowed by An­gela Markley (32:05), Anne Farmer (32:36), Sarah Har­ris (33:03), Rachael Lawrance (34:45), Daisy Pickles (35:17), Jo Miles (38:44) and Bar­bara Mur­ray (38:59).

For the men, Mark Walker (32:39) fin­ished 19th on the day and first male Har­rier, fol­lowed by Scott Wil­son (33:55), Ju­lian Brown (36:14), Gary Will­cock (36:45), Steven Mil­lar (36:54), Ray O’Keefe (39:59), Tim Marsh (41:58), Mark Wheel­ton (43:19) and David Han­cock (49:17).

The Har­ri­ers’ Kristy Gill, took the women’s V35 ti­tle af­ter an ex­tremely im­pres­sive sea­son, never fin­ish­ing out­side of the top four. In the women’s V50, Jo Miles took bronze af­ter sev­enth at Wythen­shawe.

From the Har­ri­ers’ men, James Noakes (be­low right) fin­ished fourth in the V45s af­ter an ex­tremely strong sea­son in which he al­ways fin­ished in the top seven.

Although the league has fin­ished, the Har­ri­ers still have one last race, and many mem­bers are trav­el­ling down to Par­lia­ment Hill on Satur­day to com­pete in the big­gest race of the sea­son, the na­tional cham­pi­onships.

The event is usu­ally a star-stud­ded race, with 2012 Triathlon World Cham­pion and Olympic bronze medal­ist Jonathan Brown­lee com­pet­ing last year.

●● Kristy Gill, Olivia Wal­wyn-Bush and Jo Miles

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