Ben Price led the Cheltenham Harriers men’s team to their thirteenth consecutive league victory as they claimed a fourth consecutive Gloucestershire Cross Country League title at Plock Court in Gloucester. The first of four laps saw Price, Andrew Savery of Leamington and Harriers new signing Anthony Bailey pull clear of the chasing pack. After a lap Savery moved clear of the Harriers duo to open an unassailable lead as he went on to claim victory. Price pulled clear of Bailey towards the halfway point of the race, before going on to claim an impressive second place. Bailey saw off a late challenge from teammate Roger Mullins as the pair finished sixth and seventh respectively, whilst Jon Barnes came home tenth in his first race for three months. Russell Forsbrook and Dave Randall were locked together for three laps before Forsbrook moved clear on the final circuit to come home in twelfth place. Randall completed the victorious six man team in sixteenth place as he finished second vet 50 runner both on the day and in the final league standings. With Miguel Mundinano in 22nd, Dave Rantell in 25th and Andy Gore in 40th the Harriers veteran team took victory on the day as they moved up to second in the overall league table. Despite missing the final fixture John Parker took the individual title, with Bailey taking bronze in the 20-39 age group and Mundinano picking up the 40-44 age group silver medal.
The Harriers women ended the season as runners-up behind Stroud after finishing fourth in the final fixture. Lucy Merigold led the team home in eighth place as she claimed the league silver in the 35-39 age category. Nicola Whiteman made a welcome return to racing in 15th whilst Kerry Heath-Smith completed the scoring team in 22nd place as she finished one position ahead of Joan Shaw. Shaw made it four victories out of four in the vet 50 category to take the league title for her age group. The veteran team of Merigold, Heath-Smith and Shaw finished second on the day behind Clevedon but still took home the league title.
In the young athletes races there was a win for Bea Knight in the under 11 girl’s race as she beat individual league gold medallist Grace Pitman into second. With Jessica Burke in fourth the team took victory both on the day and in the final league standings. The under 13 boys’ team also took home the league gold medals despite finishing fourth on the day through Sam Greenleaf (6th), Jacob Miller (15th) and Jack Mundinano (22nd) Despite missing the final race Ben Roberts took the individual league title. In the under 15 boy’s race there was a Harriers one-two for Jasper Greenleaf and Ben Williams as the team topped the final league standings. The under 15 girls’ team finished the season in second place with Jessica White winning the final race and Charlotte Hayward placing third. Whilst the under 11 boys’ team of Tom French (4th), Fraser Willmore (6th) and Henry Rayner (10th) enjoyed a final fixture win they remained second in the end of season standing. The under 13 girls’ team of Agata Giles (7th), Isabel Ovens (9th) and Freya Lane (12th) finished third on the day to take the series bronze medals. Despite missing the final race of the season Rachel See finished third overall in the under 17 age group.
For further Harriers performances see the full results.