Mud, glorious mud!
Pontefract race course was the venue for the Northern Cross Country Championships. After a considerable amount of rain the going was soft to very soft in places more suitable to rally cross than cross country running! The first Harrier across the course was Issie Starkey who finished in 53rd place in the U17 womens race. Next was the U13 girls with Eliza Withers completing the course in 187th place. The U17 boys were represented by Luke Hack (84th), Aaron Auton (107th) who is starting to show some form and had a very encouraging run, James Greer (108th) and Ryan Canizo (120th) who got swallowed up by the mud but still finished the race much to his credit! George Veitch and Lewis Moore performed extremely well in a very competitive U13 mens race with George in 87th and Lewis in 170th. A hotly fought U15 girls ended with less than 2 minutes separating the top 50, with Laura Kirkham in 45th and Vanessa Roper in 131st. In the U15 boys Harry Robson had a storming run in 41st place and only 30 seconds outside the top 10. Fergus Roberts on his return to club colours this season had a great run to place just outside the top ten in 11th place in the Junior mens race. By this stage the course was fit for pigs rather than athletes but Jo Adams found the conditions to her liking with a pleasing run in 27th, the ever smiling Jackie Keavney in 95th, the ever improving Pauline Whittaker in 235th, Fiona Wilson in 286th and Michelle Sprent in 307th. The men were the last to cross the start line but the course was more akin to bog snorkelling or the Somme by this stage. Rob Scott mastered the conditions to come home in 148th, Ken Harker had a good run in 211th, Mark Flannery in 296th, Carl Jones in 308th, Mark Crawford (345th), Simon Withers and Andy Everard in 557th and 572nd, respectively.
On Saturdays parkrun at Darlington, Michelle Nolan was 4th overall and 1st lady in 18:20 and Ronnie Corbett acting as a pace maker was 34th. Shona Fletcher ran at a very slippy Albert Park parkrun and was the 1st lady and 10th overall in a new pb of 18:04.