Just six weeks out from this event and the Midland Counties were still without a venue so we must begin with a special mention for Adam Guy and the volunteers from Wolverhampton & Bilston Athletic Club who stepped in and staged a great event on behalf of the Midland Counties Cross-Country Association (MCCCA). The MCCCA is also grateful to the team of officials who attended on the day and a special mention must be made of Ray Morgan who produced the results in what turned out to be a challenging situation.
As usual the Young Athletes races were not strongly supported due in part to half-term and then a West Midlands Schools event. It is hard to avoid this when the date of the event is set in the overall Winter Event Program but we will certainly see whether the schools could move their date in future years.
The first race of the day was the Under-13 relays with both boy’s and girl’s teams running together. The Boys race was won by Wolverhampton and Bilston in 34:52, ahead of City of Stoke in 35:09 with bronze medals going to Bromsgrove & Redditch in 35:50. The fastest leg of the day belonged to Lino Goodwin of City of Stoke who clocked 11:07 for the 3 kilometre lap.
The Under-13 girls race saw Mansfield Harriers win in 38:12, with Halesowen second in 39:23 and Bromsgrove & Redditch third in 39:55. Fastest leg of the day was Lily Mason on the first leg for Mansfield in 11:56.
The Under-15s race saw a win for Bromsgrove & Redditch in 33:03, with second place going to Telford Athletic Club in 33:29 and third place to Wolverhampton & Bilston Athletic Club in 34:23. Samuel Hembry of Bromsgrove & Redditch was fastest leg of the day recording 10:40.
In the Under-15 Girls race Wolverhampton & Bilston Athletic Club took their second title of the day in 34:57 ahead of Burton Athletic Club in 37:04. Cheltenham and County Harriers finished third in 38:31 and it was good to see the medals spread between clubs in the Under-13s and Under-15s. The fastest leg of the Under-15 girls’ race was Rosie Kind (Wolverhampton & Bilston) who ran 11:08.
The Under-17 Men’s race was one of the least contested races of the day with just four full teams finishing. The winners were Worcester Athletic Club in 32:50 with the largest winning margin of the day. Runners-up were Newcastle Staffs Athletic Club in 36:29 with Halesowen third in 37:01. Fastest leg of the day was Samuel Lee of Worcester Athletic Club in 10:29.
The Under-17 Women’s Race was won by Tipton Harriers in 35:49. Silver medals went to Burton Athletic Club in 36:05, with Bromsgrove & Redditch the bronze medalists in 37:34. Fastest leg of the day was recorded by Jade Charlton of Tipton Harriers in 11:31.
The Senior and Master’s Men’s and Women’s races are always combined and such was this year’s entry that 115 teams started on the first leg. Our apologies to those who were there on the day as technical issues with the information from which the results were produced meant that we were not able to award medals for the fastest laps in the Senior Men’s, Masters Men’s and Master’s Ladies Events, as well as the first three teams in both the Masters events. These medals will be sent by the Midlands Office to the recipient in the next few days.
In the Senior Women’s Race Wolverhampton & Bilston Athletic Club were clear winners by over 3 minutes in 64:36. The runners up were B.R.A.T in 67:59 who themselves were almost one minute clear of third placers Leamington Cycling & Athletic Club in 68:51. Fastest leg of the day was run by Amelia Samuels of Wolverhampton & Bilston who clocked 20:36. Forty-one teams finished and eight incomplete teams started.
The Masters Women’s Race saw 19 complete teams finish and the field was led home by Wolverhampton & Bilston (73:52), ahead of Trentham Running Club (76:05) with Halesowen in third place in 76:44. Fastest leg of the day was Victoria Mackay of Wolverhampton & Bilston Athletic Club in 23:05.
The Senior Men’s Race saw a clear victory for Rugby & Northants who clocked 77:32. Just over one minute behind were Tipton Harriers in 78:33 with B.R.A.T third in 79:21. The overall fastest Men’s leg was clocked by Ben Robinson of Gloucester Athletic Club who ran 18:31 on the third leg (most of the other fastest legs were run on the first leg).
Tipton Harriers were victors in the Master’s Men Relay (82:26) ahead of runners-up Halesowen (86:25) with Rugby & Northants third in 89:06. Fastest leg was recorded by Robert Meredith of Tipton Harriers on the second leg in 19:28.
Once again, all our thanks to Wolverhampton & Bilston and the volunteers who made the event possible and to the clubs and athletes who supported our first cross-country event since last winter’s Covid lockdown.