It’s Back Again!

It’s that time of year again! The weather is rubbish; cold and wet – and there’s plenty of mud forming just waiting to be run through. Yes, the Cross Country season has begun. After what turned out to be a fabulous Track & Field season with many memorable performances, our junior section got stuck into their first cross country event last weekend at Acklam Grange School, Middlesbrough. It was the first in a series of 8 events organised by the North Yorkshire South Durham Harrier League (NYSD)

For those of you new to NYSD, points are awarded to those finishing in the top 10 of each category…..10 points for 1st place, 9 points for second etc down to 1 point for 10th place. Cumulative points are added together after each event to find the overall winners at the end of the season; obviously the more NYSD meetings you compete at the more chances you have of scoring points!

Here’s the Acklam course layout and who ran what….

Under 11’s

It was a great turn out from the younger section of our Junior Harriers, with 14 Under 11’s competing today. A few had been in this position before, but for most, this was their first experience of an NYSD Cross Country race. We had 8 in the boys race from a field of 22 athletes, and amazingly, 6 of them all scored points by finishing in the top 10! Leading our boys home was Ollie Curran in 3rd place (6:24), closely followed by Daniel Callaghan in 4th (6:29) and James I’Anson in 5th (6:29). Not far behind James was Lucas Rogers in 6th (6:44) with Rhys Price hot on his heels in 7th place (7:12). And just sneaking into the top 10 was Donovan Tarn with a time of 7:23. Two more excellent runs came from George Togher who took 17th place (8:09) closely followed by Jacob Addison in 21st place (8:28). A fantastic effort from all, well done boys!

In the girls race there were more impressive performances in an even bigger field of 38 young athletes. The first came from Sasha Patterson after a cracking run, crossing the line in exactly 7.00 to take 5th place. Next up were Eleanor Gibson in 17th place (7:35) and Charlotte Sensical, a couple of places behind in 19th (7:51). More top running came from Hettie Graves who finished 27th (8.16), Beth Johnson in 30th place (8:29) and Beth Graham just behind in 32nd place (8:31). A super effort girls, well done!

Considering, for some, this was their fist time out in the white & blue of DHAC, or their first NYSD cross country you can be nothing but impressed by theses youngsters. It can be a daunting experience, especially at that age, but they just got on with the job and should be really proud of themselves. We look forward to seeing them in action again soon!

Under 13’s

We had three U13 boys in today’s race, with 16 boys running all together. Hugo Douglas-Reeves scored an impressive 9 points by finishing in 2nd place (9:08), with former Allerton Junior, Albert Mack, running his first race for DHAC and taking 3points for 8th place (9:56). Jacob Appleyard completed the trio after a great run to finish in 13th place (10:23). In the team even that put our boys in 2nd place, just 2 points behind Hartlepool AC. Great effort lads, well done!

There were 23 athletes in the girls race and again, 3 of them were from our junior camp. All-rounder, Lottie Graves, proved she can hold her own with the cross country runners when she finished in 5th place (9:53) for a very healthy 6 points. For our other two athletes, this was their first NYSD cross country race. Year 1 U13, Chloe Graham, finished in 15th place (12:05), with Lily Bowman not far behind in 18th place (12:53). In the team event the girls finished an excellent 3rd place. Top running girls, well done!

Under 15’s

There were just the 2 from our junior section in the boys race, with both of them making their NYSD cross country debut. No points this time but excellent running from Thomas Hill who finished in 14th place (11:18), and Thomas Grayson who took 17th (11:52). Great efrfort lads, well done!

We just had 2 U15 girls competing today as well, but it was maximum oints rom Freya Talman and Sophie Bannister! Inspired running brought them home just a second apart as Freya took 1st place in 12:10, and Sophie a close 2nd in 12:11. Fantastic result girls, well done!

Under 17’s

Dylan Wilson was our only U17 in the men’s race today. Although he’s well acquainted with the NYSD, this was his first season as an Under 17. So it was great to see him getting on the score sheet with 3 points in the bag for 8th place (22:12). Nice one, Dylan!

As usual the U17 women ran alongside the U20’s, Seniors and Veterans and we had 3 from DHAC competing today. First up was Marissa Boon; it’s been a quiet year for her so far so it was great to see her back in action again here. And what an impressive return – the 1st U17 to cross the line (23:06), which was 5th place overall. Emily Vest was our next U17 to finish after an excellent run; she was the 4th U17 (26th overall) in a time of 25:55. And not far behind as the 5th U17 (38th overall) was Olivia Douglas-Reeves who completed the 5.8k circuit in 27:12. Pretty good considering there were 136 starters in this category! A fabulous effort ladies, well done!

Under 20’s

We should also mention a couple of lads we had running alongside the Seniors and Vets in the U20 category; Adam Russell and Harry Wilson. Two strong performances from these guys as usual with Adam finishing as the 3rd U20 (6th overall) in a time 36:49 and Harry following closely to finish 4th U20 (15th overall) in 38:59. Excellent results from a huge field of 153! Well done lads!

Overall a superb start to the NYSD cross country season with some excellent results and plenty of points scored. The next meeting isn’t far off – 24th October at Foxrush, Redcar so get your entries in!

Big thanks to Penny I’Anson and Sarah Graves for the use of their photos

For full results go to the NYSD home page at

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