Birmingham XC League, 1/12/12

Dave Roper overcame illness to claim a top ten finish as he led the Cheltenham Harriers team home at the Birmingham Cross Country League Division One fixture at Cofton Park. Having set a 10k road personal best at Leeds two weeks ago Roper had been looking forward to the fixture on the course at which he claimed fifth place last year. After being unable to train properly during the week, the 27 year old was expecting to struggle but told team manager Andy Prophett he would still turn out in order to help the team. Starting relatively cautiously Roper moved into the top ten by the end of the first of three laps before going on to exceed his pre-race expectations and finish in ninth place. Marc Fallows enjoyed the challenging course to produce another good performance in 54th place whilst Roger Mullins showed improved form to finish 69th. James Bingham and Darren Jordan had a ding-dong battle over the last lap before Bingham took six seconds out of the veteran in the final stages as the pair finished 78th and 83rd respectively. Having his best race for several months Elliot Prince completed the scoring team in 96th place whilst Will New in 111th and Russell Forsbrook in 117th provided vital backup. With a team score of 389 the Harriers placed tenth of the sixteen teams on the day as they moved up to ninth in the league table. Full Results Photos