North East Goes Mad For Running!

Whatever your age, whatever your ability there was something that most people could get involved with last weekend. There was a whole series of events held throughout the North East to coincide with Sunday’s Great North Run, and of course, you just couldn’t keep some of our juniors away from the North East’s biggest sporting event. While some ran for fun and others ran for charity, most ran with that competitive edge that they’re used to, so here’sa quick round up of how the weekendwent for our young Harrier Heroes.

Under 13 Harrier, Libby Hammond was due to run the Junior Great North Run until she went back to school and was asked to compete for her school in the Great Secondary School Sprint, over a distance of 100m. So on the Friday before the main event she went off with her school to Stockton and ran in the 100m heat which she won, followed by another win in the semi final with an excellent time of 14.94s; a new PB! This meant she qualified for the A Final, taking place the following day. Unfortunately, this meant that Libby would not run in the Junior Great North Run; the race which she loves and has trained hard for. However, she didn’t want to miss the opportunity of running amongst elite athletes as part of the City Games. So on Saturday morning she headed into Stockton and was able to warm up amongst some of the countries best athletes including local athlete, Richard Kilty. She was thrilled to see the GB flag next to her own name at the starting line up, and then being listed as ‘Great Britain and NI’ when the results were shown! Libby gave it her all in the final and finished 4th out of the 4 girls and although she hates coming last, it didn’t bother her today; she was on cloud nine! Well done, Libby,what a great experience!

Staying on Teesside, Under 13 Harrier, Zara Jones put in a tremendous performance at the Junior Great Tees Run. The 4k course followed the north bank of the river from Stockton down to the Tees Barrage. Here it crossed over and returned along the river’s south side, finally crossing the Millennium Footbridge to head back to the finish line on Riverside Road. Zara showed the crowds what a talented young athlete she is as she crossed the line in 1st place, in a rather impressive time of 15:58. A fantastic effort, Zara, well done!

Moving north, Hugo Douglas-Reeves ran the Junior Great North Run in Newcastle. He ran as a Harrier but not in his club vest as he was running for charity and wore his Duchenne UK World’s Strongest Boys T-shirt with pride! He was raising funds for the “Muscles for Mitchell” Powerchair Football Fund. His classmate, Mitchell has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy which means he has weak muscles and can’t play ordinary football / sport with his friends. The run was on the same day as World Duchenne Awareness Day. Hugo is trying to help raise the £5000 needed to get his friend Mitch his own Powerchair to play football in. He aimed to run the 4K in a time of less than 18.00 minutes and smashed that in a time of 16.39 coming 10th in his age group out of 584 boys. He has already raised in excess of £400 and would love to raise more and support his friend.

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