Tees Valley Cross Country Championships

The secondary schools were not the only cross country runners in action this week. Having already qualified from the previous round, hundreds of primary school athletes descended upon Stewart Park today for the Tees Valley finals. Like their older counterparts, these junior runners had to contend with muddy, wet conditions; in fact, one part of the route was spanned by a giant puddle which just couldn’t be avoided! This was going to be wet!

For some it was their first time running at this County level equivalent, and the nerves were apparent. Others had been in this position before and were a little more relaxed about the proposition that lay ahead of them. There were, of course, some of our own juniors who’d made it through to represent Darlington and this was an excellent opportunity to see some of the new talent we have coming through the ranks at DHAC!

DHAC Future: James (top) Rowan and Matthew (bottom left/right)

Year 3/4 Boys
Running in this category was one of our youngest athletes, James I’Anson, who made his club debut recently at the Acklam NYSD. From Hurworth School, he put in a fantastic effort to finish in 16th place. An excellent result, James, well done!

Year 5 Boys
We had two of our DHAC Juniors representing Darlington schools in this category; Rowan Steel (High Coniscliffe) and Matthew Foster (Mowden). Having won the Year 5 race at Darlington, Rowan was a strong contender for this one, and he didn’t disappoint, finishing in a fantastic 4th place. We’ve seen some tremendous performances from Matthew recently including NYSD and Junior Parkrun amongst others, and he produced another great run today finishing in 21st place. Top running boys, well done to both!

Year 6 Girls
We now consider Lottie Graves (St. Bedes) to be one of our regular athletes here at DHAC. She’s a talented young lady who has the makings of a great athlete and it was no surprise to see she had qualified for these finals. She showed her strength once again and crossed the line to finish in 5th place today. Well done Lottie, another superb performance!

Year 6 Boys
We had two more of our young talents running in this age group; Hugo Douglas-Reeves (Abbey) and Daniel I’Anson (Hurworth). Hugo was another winner from the first round at Darlington, and has won the Tees Valley finals for the last two years, so he was up for the triple today. Hugo and his rival, Charlie from Mandale AC, were out front from the off. Hugo tucked in behind him all the way but just didn’t have the legs on the final sprint. He was just behind Charlie going into the funnel, a valiant effort to take 2nd place. That’s still an amazing result! Congratulations Hugo, hope you weren’t too disappointed.

A lesson for us all: Remember, having some decent competition to run against is a good thing – it drives us on to even greater things! We saw Daniel (with Hugo) doing very well at the Blyth Sportshall Series last year, so it was great to see him representing the town at cross country as well. It was another great effort today, finishing in 22nd place. Well done Daniel, keep up the good work!

A polite reminder….. If you know of any Junior Harrier who has competed for the club or their school recently, please let us know. Results from the school events, in particular, are not always published, so without your help, there’s a chance that someone will get missed. So please drop us a line at dgbell2000@yahoo.co.uk and if you have any photos we can use, even better. Thank you for your continued support.

Once again, a fantastic effort from our juniors, they have done themselves, their school, the town and DHAC proud! It’s re-assuring to see the next phase of talent coming through at DHAC. The futures bright…..the future’s blue and white! #UTH

More junior talent: Lottie (top) Hugo and Daniel (bottom left & right)

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