Butters and Holt retain Gibside all-terrain titles

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Morpeth Harriers John Butters and Emma Holt, both retained their respective titles, and improved on their finishing times at Sunday’s annual Gibside Fruitbowl Multi Terrain event.

The event was held in the grounds of the historic National Trust property, close to Rowlands Gill, Gateshead.

Butters finished second to Blackhill Bounder Gary Wallace, only losing out for victory by 34 seconds, when he posted a finishing time of 40m 45s, improving on his finishing time over the approximately six-mile tough circuit of 2015, by 67 seconds, when he had finished fourth.

He also retained the Over 40 Veteran Men’s title that he had won in 2015.

It was also a welcome return to the tough course for Holt, as she finished 13th overall in 44m59s, improving her 2015 time by 17 seconds, when she had placed 15th overall.

She also retained her women’s title, by a winning margin of five minutes over Heaton Harrier Hannah Shillitoe.

Finishing just behind Holt in 14th place was fellow Morpeth Harrier Colin Archer, who produced an excellent performance, posting a time of 45m01s.

Other Morpeth Harriers taking part in the event, which had a total of 436 finishers were Michael Winter (50th) (14th O/40 Man) 49m52s, Kevin Bray (76th) (15th O/50 Man) 52m47s, Lindsay Turnbull (130th) (5th O/45 Woman) 56m11s, Sue Smith (303rd) (27th O/45 Woman) 68m18s, and Jacinta Wake (304th) (28th O/45 Woman) 68m19s.

l Three Morpeth Harriers were in competitive action at the annual Jarrow and Hebburn AC Minors Cross Country Meeting, held at Bedewell Park, Hebburn on Saturday.

Keira Peck, younger sister of Holly, finished fourth in the Year 4 Girls event, completing the three quarter mile course in 4m45s, which proved to be 12 seconds adrift of Deanna Burdon of Chester-le-Street.

In the Year 6 Girls event, run over a mile and a quarter course, Sophie Cunningham, the clubs Under 11 Girls Champion, finished ninth in 6m06s.

Completing the Morpeth Harriers trio was Joseph Hudspith, who finished sixth in the Year 6 Boys event, posting a time of 5m24s, running on a one-and-a-half-mile course.

l There were some prominent finishers amongst Morpeth Harriers competing in three respective Park Runs on Saturday.

Most prominent was Lorna MacDonald, who was first Woman across the line at Rising Sun, Wallsend.

She finished fifth overall, completing the 5k circuit in 19m42s, which for her was a new personal best over the distance.

Two places ahead of her was her Morpeth Harriers club colleague, who posted a time of 19m29s.

Meanwhile in Newcastle, Morpeth Harriers newcomer Joe Ramshaw finished fourth in 16m54s.

At Whitley Bay, Morpeth Harriers Paul Banks and Paul Bellingham finished 16th and 19th, posting respective times of 20m16s, and 20m33s.

l Morpeth Harriers are pleased to announce that their Linden Homes sponsored Athlete of the Month Award for August 2016 has gone to talented Under 17 Woman throws specialist Bobbie Griffiths.

Griffiths had a superb month indeed. Firstly, she won the much prized gold medal in the javelin, throwing a new personal best of 40.24m at the combined Under 13, Under 17, Northern Championships at Middlesbrough.

At the same venue a few days previously, she had produced three excellent performances when competing for her club in the final Northern League Division 2 match of the season.

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