Juniors Say Hello To The New XC Season

As we battle against saying our last goodbyes to the summer, there comes a point when you’ve just got to admit that the new season is upon us. For some that means the start of indoor athletics; for others it’s time to hang up the spikes for a while and get out the football boots instead; but for others it’s the start of a whole new season….running for club and County, school or maybe even Country, as we welcome in one of the busiest times of the year and the new cross country season.

The NYSD Cross Country Relays at Thirsk traditionally mark the start of the new season, followed by 6 more fixtures of straight races around the region, then culminating in a Road Relay at Darlington’s South Park. Points are awarded for the top 10 finishers; 10 points for 1st place down to 1 point for 10th place. Then after all the events are complete, the points are totted up to find the overall winners for the season. As always our juniors are as keen as mustard and had been looking forward to getting the first event underway.

Under 11 Girls There’s no relay for the Under 11’s, just an individual race. There were four of our youngsters taking part and the first of those to cross the line was Zara Jones in 3rd place, finishing in an excellent time of 6:39. After finishing in 2nd place overall at the end of last season, that’s a fantastic start to this year’s campaign. Keep up the good work, Zara, and well done! Next up for DHAC in 10th and 11th places were Savannah Tarn and Sophie Bannister. Savannah was a regular at the NYSD XC events last year and managed to finish 7th overall, so she’s made another impressive start to the season this year, today crossing the line in 7:25. Well done Savannah!

It was great to see Sophie Banister back again; last year she managed two top ten finishes, and although just outside the points today, she crossed the line in an excellent time of 7:33. Great stuff, Sophie, well done! Not far behind, making her NYSD XC debut was Lottie Graves. It was an impressive first outing for Lottie finishing in 13th place out of the 28 starters, in a time of 7:36. A fantastic effort, Lottie, great to have you on board! There were no Under 11 boys out today so it’s straight on to the relays…..

Under 13 Girls It’s fantastic to see such talented young athletes coming through the junior ranks of DHAC, and these next three certainly fall into that category; put your hands together for Libby Hammond, Fern Shelton and Tori Buckley. All three were regulars at last year’s NYSD XC, Libby and Tori as Under 11’s, and Fern as Under 13, so on paper, a very strong team. Libby started proceedings and ran a fantastic first leg in a time of 6:53 leaving the girls in 2nd place, with Scarborough AC hot on their tails as she passed the baton over to Fern. Fern pushed hard and managed to extend their lead over Scarborough to 15 seconds, after running an excellent leg in 7:15. This put the girls in a comfortable 2nd place as Fern handed over to Tori. After yesterday’s pentathlon you’d think Tori would be resting today. But no, she ran a cracking final leg in 7:26 and extended their lead over Scarborough AC and crossed the line in an impressive 2nd place behind a strong R&Z team who were eventual winners. Well done to all three girls, a tremendous performance!

Under 15 Girls There were no Under 15 Boys today, but a pretty impressive trio stepped forward for the girls team. Mia Wetherill and Emily Vest, both well established XC runners stepping up to their first season at Under 15, and Jess Hall who put in some impressive runs last year finishing 6th overall in the NYSD XC. Sounds like a recipe for success! Mia started the girls off and ran a very strong first leg in 6:48 leaving our young DHAC team in 2nd place as Mia Handed over to Emily. Emily impressed everyone with what was the fastest of all the second leg runners with a time of 7:04, overtaking R&Z, and putting our girls into the lead! Jess Hell continued in that vein with the fastest anchor leg of the day, 6:34, and extended the lead to 35 seconds as she crossed the line in a fantastic 1st place! Well done girls, a trulyimpressive start to your cross country season; long may it continue!

Senior Women As there was no Under 17 age category here today, three of our juniors put together a formidable team to go up against the seniors; Ellie Phillips (4th overall last year), Emma Hart (clear winner of last year’s Under 15’s) and Megan Noble (another of our most well established young athletes still Under 15 last season.) There was a big field of 20 teams, but Ellie got the girls off to an excellent start with a first leg of 13:17, leaving them in 4th place as she handed over to Megan. Megan worked hard as always, and she managed to overtake one of the R&Z teams, finishing her second leg in a time of 14:17 as she passed the baton to Emma in 3rd place. As you’d expect, it was a tremendous final leg from Emma who managed to maintain 3rd place as she crossed the line in 14:01, and a cumulative time of 41:35. Well done to all three girls; a fantastic effort and a force to be reckoned with against the seniors! ☺

What a start to the new cross country season – with a 1st place, a 2nd place and two 3rd places for our junior teams. With results like that we can all look forward to an exciting season ahead. Well done to all! The next NYSD meeting (not relays this time) will take place at the Acorn Centre, Acklam on 14th October. Why not come along and be part of the DHAC team? #UTH!

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