O’Donoghue ended 2017 on a high with a superb victory in the Tri-Counties Cross Country Championships at Bath University (pictured left) which was a significant breakthrough for the 26-year-old nurse.
But this weekend’s regional event represents another big step up and with a strong entry, led by Wiltshire’s reigning champion Ruth Barnes and clubmate Eleanor Davies, O’Donoghue knows this will be her toughest race to do date.
“It is going to be a really competitive race as there are going to be some really good girls there,” said O’Donoghue.
“It would be nice to finish in the top ten but really I am just going there to enjoy it and have as much fun as possible.”
Other local runners to look out for include in-form Westbury Harrier Hannah Hobbs in the under 20 women’ race and sister Ellie in the under 17s.
The Hobbs sisters are in god form this winter
Reigning men’s champion Owain Jones heads the Avon squad with Weston AC’s Chris McMillan and Dan Jones of Team Bath also running.
South West Inter-Counties Cross Country Championships, Aldon Hill, Yeovil (BA22 9TA) Timetable – 11.30: Under 11 Boys 1580m (Not Championship Race); 11.30: Under 11 Girls 1580m (Not Championship Race); 12.00: Senior Men 8.5k (Including Under 20 Men and Masters – M40, M50, M60); 12.45: Under 13 Girls 3.1k; 13.00: Under 13 Boys 3.1k: 13.15: Under 15 Girls 3.6k; 13.35: Under 15 Boys 4k; 13.35: Under 17 Women 4k; 13.55: Under 17 Men 5.2k; 14.15: Senior Women 5.2k (Including Under 20 Women and Masters – W35, W45, W55).
Avon squad (AVR=Avon Valley Runners; B&W=Bristol & West AC; Cl=Clevedon AC; NS=North Somersset AC; TB=Team Bath AC; W=Weston AC; WH=Westbury Harrier
Senior men: Luke Murray (Cl), Ken Ham, Mike Mewse & Scott Campbell (all WH), Guy Woods (SWVets), Jonathan Goodland, Maciej Bialognski, Andy Salmon, Harry Allen, Daniel Titheradge, Owain Jones & Tom Dobra (all B&W), William Smith (SRC), Chris McMillan (W), Dan Jones (TB).
U20 men: Joe Connors (WH), Ben Whitaker (WH).
U17 men: Aidan Noble (WH), Max Davis (AVR), Sean Barry (TB), Callum Smith (NS), William Cheek (NS), Kes Pitchers (NS), Luca Murray (NS).
U15 boys: Justin Davies (TB), Johan Hobbs (WH), Fred Hawker (B&W), Ollie Lock (NS), James Harrod (WH), Rufus Thomas (B&W), Tom Connors, Ben Hamblin (NS).
U13 boys: Louis Brunsdon (NS), Will Connors, Freddie Billing (AVR), Charles Broadhurst (NS).
Senior women: Niccola Oldroyd, Imogen Peck, Lisa Newing, Natalie Grifffiths, Imogen Peck, Fiona Marks, Catie O’Donoghue, Julia Belyavin, Rosey Mushens, Lucy Bird (all B&W), Rebecca Pierce (TB), Kelly Dicks (GWR), Katie Hughes, Tamsin Chick (both WH).
U20 women: Hannah Hobbs (WH), Rosie Allen (WH), Alys Withers (NS).
U17 women: Ellie Hobbs (WH).
U15 girls: Connie Clementine (NS), Sophie Moore (AVR), Alice Bridger-Morales (B&W), Enya Maylor (TB), Rosie Hamilton-James (WH), Emily Whitaker (WH), Ella Treby (TB), Dalis Jones (WH).
U13 girls: Poppy Adams (NS), Daisy Manners-Lolley (NS), Simone Manners-Lolley (NS), Clementine Houden (B&W), Katie Whitaker (WH), Molly Thomas (B&W), Blythe Jones (NS), Grace Metcalfe (NS).