MAKING a rare excursion onto the country Eleanor Davis showed excellent form to finish 13th in the senior women’s race at the Inter Counties Cross Country Championships in Loughborough.
The Bristol & West AC runner (pictured left) is feeling her way back into form after injury and after a couple of encouraging road races – winning the Chester 10k (34:52) the other week following third place in the Alsager 5 (27:39) – she tackled her biggest race since coming 56th in the British Cross Challenge event in Liverpool last November.
Next local runner home was clubmate Natalie Griffiths in 62nd (pictured right in the black Avon & Somerset vest) while newcomers Elaina Gard and Catie O’Donoghue finished 87th and 108th respectively.
“To be honest the course and conditions didn’t really suit our ladies as they enjoy a firmer surface,” said B&W team manager and coach Keith Brackstone.
Elsewhere from across the West Country Cornwall AC’s Grace Brock, who is coached by regional BMC organiser John Knowles, claimed a magnificent victory finishing 20 seconds clear of the field in the under 20 women’s race.
She was the second Cornish champion of the day after Maisy Luke won the under 13 girls’ race.
Top west runner in the senior men’s race was North Devon AC’s Phil Norman in 11th (pictured right) with Bristol & West’s Will Christofi 21st.
In the under 15 girls’ race Westbury Harriers’ Rosie Hamilton-James finished a creditable 30th with clubmate Dalis Jones in 60th.
Inter Counties Cross Country Championships incorporating the British Cross Challenge, Loughborough – senior women: 13 Eleanor Davis (B&W) 34:39; 62 Natalie Griffiths (B&W) 37:20; 87 Elaina Gard (A&S) 38:19; 108 Catie O’Donoghue (A&W) 38:59.
U17 women: 1 Grace Brock (CAC) 21:58; 58 Elise Thorner (A&S) 25:06.
U15 girls: 30 Rosie Hamilton-James (WH) 20:25; 60 Dalis Jones (WH) 20:55.
U13 girls: 1 Maisy Luke (CAC) 14:15; 29 Taya Dee (HRC) 15:14; 35 Hannah Blundy (A&S) 15:19.
Senior men: 11 Phil Norman (NDAC) 44:43; 15 Ben Cole (Swin) 44:53; 21 Will Christofi (B&W) 45:23; 46 Luke Prior (A&S) 46:48; 66 Harry Allen (B&W) 47:29.
U20 men: 1 Tom Mortimer (Stroud) 29:49; 2 Nathan Dunn (Preston) 30:10; 3 Jake Heyward (Cardiff) 30:18.
U17 men: 59 Max Davis (AVR) 22:54; 82 Otto Copping (TB) 23:21; 107 James Wright (Chipp) 23:41.
U15 boys: 44 Alex Parsons (TB) 19:20.