Harriers’ youngsters show the way to go

Alison Brown, Morpeth Harriers' leading U17/U20 Women's finisher at the Heaton races. Photo by Hudson Stoker.
Alison Brown, Morpeth Harriers' leading U17/U20 Women's finisher at the Heaton races. Photo by Hudson Stoker.
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THE major successes in Morpeth Harriers’ performances at Sunday’s Heaton Memorial Road Races, held on newly-set-out courses on Newcastle’s Town Moor because of extensive road works being carried out in Exhibition Park, came from the club’s younger age group, particularly the U13 and U15 Boys who both achieved inspired team victories, writes George Patterson.

Defying the chilly early-morning conditions, Euan Jones got round the 3k course in 11m10s, just more than a minute adrift of winner Alexander Brown, of Houghton, to finish an excellent fifth, and led Morpeth Harriers U15 Boys to team victory, with equally excellent support coming from Adam Shewry (sixth) 11m38s, and Cameron Kirk (10th) 13m02s.

Ten minutes before the U15 Boys’ event, Will Sibson of Morpeth Harriers had masterminded his own individual victory in the U13 Boys’ event, over the same course and distance, while posting a finishing time of 11m17s, just 12 seconds ahead of his industrious clubmate Alex Cunningham, who finished second.

With Joe Dowd finishing 10th in 12m09s, Morpeth Harriers secured a handsome U13 Boys’ team victory.

Other Morpeth Harriers U13 Boys’ finishers were Mark Booth (12th) 12m17s, and Ross Charlton (13th) 12m19s.

In the combined U17/U20 Mens 5k event, Morpeth’s Sam Hancox finished third U20 in fifth place in 17m03s.

Elliot Kelly and Ryan Green were third and fourth U17 Mens finishers in 17m19s, and 17m44s respectively.

Alison Brown and Charlotte Jewell were Morpeth Harriers’ only finishers in the combined U17/U20 Womens 5k event.

Brown was second U17 behind Birtley’s Sophie Burnett, finishing in a time of 20m36s, and Jewell was third U17 Woman in 21m05s.

Ailsa Jones ran well to finish fifth in the U13 Girls 3k event in 12m21s, just fending off the close attentions of her Morpeth clubmate Kate Seymour, who finished one place adrift in 12m22s.

In the U15 Girls 3k event, Morpeth’s Lizzie Rank finished sixth in 12m15s, and Abby Sheldon finished ninth in 12m40s.

The combined U11 Boys and Girls 1k event attracted a total field of 29 finishers.

Morpeth’s Bobby Stone produced an excellent run to place third in the Boys event in 4m39s, and Dylan Gooding finished as ninth Boy in 5m08s.

In the Girls event, Morpeth’s Rhiannon Hedley was second girl home in 4m56s, and clubmate Holly Peck was third girl home in 5m02s.

The main event, the 10k for Senior and Veteran Men and Women attracted a finishing field of 539 runners.

Disappointingly Morpeth Harriers could only provide two of those finishers, and in an event where in the past they have proved to be a dominant force.

The first of those was newcomer Mark Crosby, who finished in 175th place, in a time of 43m41s, and he was 24th in the Over 45 Veteran Mens category.

Morpeth Harriers other finisher was Eric Adams, who placed 271st in a time of 47m03s.

Congratulations go to organisers at Heaton Harriers for providing the event with suitable courses, having being put under a great deal of pressure and duress in the weeks leading up to the event, due to the lack of regard and information coming from those responsible for the current development work being carried out in the areas of the Exhibition Park, Newcastle.

SISTERS Naomi and Nadine Arkle of Morpeth Harriers certainly made impressive starts to their winter indoor campaigns when they both achieved new personal bests at Jarrow’s Young Athletes meeting at Monkton Stadium last Thursday, November 7.

In the U15 Girls 60m heats, Naomi clocked an equal fastest time of 8.7s, which also was a new pb.

However, in the later run final she went better when clocking 8.6s, this only placed her second, narrowly missing out to Jarrow’s Nicola Caygill’s 8.5s.

The younger Nadine also clocked a new pb in the U13 Girls 60m heats with 9.0s, which was the fastest time, however, she just lost out by a whisker to Gateshead’s Georgia Richardson in the final, when actually clocking an identical time to her, with 9.2s.

Nadine and Naomi both train and compete under the very watchful eye of their father Michael, himself a former Morpeth Harriers sprinter.

EVERGREEN Morpeth Harriers Veteran athlete Archie Jenkins, who has only recently returned from a testing stint as one of Great Britain’s team managers at the World Masters Athletics Championships in Brazil, has won a late call up to the Scotland squad, and joins fellow Morpeth Harriers Mick Thomsen (Over 35s) and Bob Marshall (Over 65s) in his country’s line-up for the British Masters Cross Country International, which is scheduled to be held at Bute Park, Cardiff this Saturday, November 16.

It will be Archie’s 20th International call-up for his country, when he competes in the Over 60 Mens event.

Another Morpeth Harrier competing at the International is Walter Ryder, who is included in the England squad, in the Over 70’s category.

REPRESENTING Great Britain, Morpeth Harrier Richard Morrell finished 35th of 48 competitors in a highly talented Senior Mens field at the IAAC Cross Country meeting, held in Soria, Spain on Sunday.

The event was won by Uganda’s Huru Dickson in 30m07s.

Morrell clocked 33m16s, and was third Brit behind Southend’s Adam Hickey (24th) 32m23s, and Brighton’s William Gray (25th) 32m26s.

PRE race entry is now available for the annual Morpeth 11k (approx) Road Race, which is scheduled to be run at 1.00pm on Wednesday, January 1, 2014.

The event is once again sponsored by the Benfield Motor Group, and the entry fee is £5 club runners, and £7 non club runners.

All entrants must be at least 17 years on the day of race, and Veteran runners must state date of birth on their entry.

The event follows its traditional route via Mitford, Mitford Steads, and the Whalton Road.

Entries to be sent to Mr K Bray, 3, Dene View Court, Pottery Bank, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61 1SH, Tel No 01670 505953.

Cheques to be made payable to Morpeth Harriers & AC, and pre race entry will close on Monday December 16.

Late Entry on the day will be available from 11.30am at race headquarters at Morpeth Rugby Club, at rates of £8 club runners and £10 non club runners, and will still be eligible for prizes.

All numbers are to be collected on the day from race headquarters, changing available at Morpeth Harriers Clubhouse, next to Morpeth Rugby Club on Mitford Road.

In case of bad weather or late course amendments, please check Morpeth Harriers’ website on www.morpethharriers.freeservers.com

Entry Forms are now downloadable from the website, and available at various sports retailers.