Josh Lay of Rugby & Northampton AC continued his successful cross country season when he finished in a superb second place in the U20 Mens race at the 2020 English National Cross Country Championships. The event was held at Nottingham’s Wollaton Park and Lay was competing in his final cross country race as a Junior man over a 10k course, which saw the Midland Champion secure a magnificent silver medal in a time of 36:42. Southampton’s Zakariya Mahamed won gold in 36:27, but the 19 year old R&N athlete was well clear of bronze medallist Samuel Moakes of Sutton in Ashfield Harriers & AC ( 36:56 ). Adrian Kaczmarek ( 145th in 45:14 ) and Joe Musgrove ( 174th in 48:43 ) also represented the club.
In the U17 Mens race over 6k Fergus Scott produced a brilliant run to clinch 8th place in a time of 23:32 with his R&N clubmate Finbar Myers recording 28:21 for 215th spot. Arthur Tilt crossed the line in 18th position in the U13 Boys event over 3k with 15:19 and this helped the R&N squad to finish 25th in the team race. He had back up from William Gower ( 210th in 17:27 ), Isaac Hutchins-Morant ( 218th in 17:34 ) and Noah Unwin ( 301st in 18:50 ).
The U15 Girls team finished in 27th place and were led home in the 4k race by Madeleine Jacks in 116th spot with 22:06. Also competing were Elspeth Unitt ( 193rd in 23:13), Grace Darcy ( 235th in 24:00 ), Hannah Tilt ( 276th in 24:54 ) and Jemima Lambert ( 331st in 26:13 ).
The Senior Men had to cover a distance of 12k and making his debut in the National was Duncan Birtwistle who led home the club in an excellent 144th position recording exactly 49 minutes. Following him home was Seb Palmer ( 453rd in 54:08 ) and completing the scoring six, which finished 59th in the team competition were Nick Gower making his debut in 713th on 58:07, Jon Taylor ( 822nd in 59:49 ), Vince Carroll ( 996th in 62:29 ) and Nigel Roberts ( 1148th in 65:05 ) with John Saw as back up ( 1197th in 65:57 ).
Freya Vincent led home the R&N Senior ladies when she covered the 8k course in 49:18 ( 521st ). She was supported by veterans Helen Jones ( 577th in 50:45 ), Angela Copson ( 625th in 51:52 ), Minnie Chesser ( 654th in 53:17 ) and Kate Williams ( 782nd in 57:39 ). The squad finished 74th. The only athlete competing in the U20 Womens 6k event was Olivia Sheehan in 125th on 38:16, but in doing so she clinched the R&N Junior Womens club Championship.
Sophia Hill was timed at 26:26 over 5k in the U17 Womens race to finish 144th with Megan Stenhouse in 232nd on 30:25. The U15 Boys saw Henry Woodward lead home the club with 19:52 over 4k for 181st position and his team mates Jenson Buttrick ( 283rd ) and Ned Gilford ( 300th ) recorded 21:24 and 21:47 respectively. Amelie Budd Beynon ( 228th in 19:17 ) and Georgia Gercs ( 290th in 20:15 ) competed in the U13 Girls race over 3k.