Top club turnout at English National XC Relays


The English National Cross Country Relays returned to Berry Hill, Mansfield last weekend and saw six teams represent the yellow and blue across four age category races.

Among the crème de la crème of the country’s talent, Heanor RC had three senior men’s quartets, two senior ladies teams plus one junior male and an U13 girls trio making their first appearance at the high-quality competition.

The individual stand-out performance of the day for HRC undoubtedly came from Lily Winfield, who finished an incredible third on the opening leg in the U13G race.


Lily’s time of 7:22 over the firm 2k course finished the day as the third-fastest of all competitors and should really make the rest of her age category sit up and take notice this winter.

Great efforts by relay debutantes Ellie Turner (9:41) and Harriet Bull (9:28) ensured the team finished 70th overall out of 94 complete teams.

Running Lily close for best individual performance of the day was Lisa Palmer. Fastest-leg at the British Masters Relays the week before prepared Lisa well as she brought the senior women’s “A” team back 13th on the opening leg.

Lisa clocked 10:14 over the 3k course – a time that was just 15 seconds outside the top-10 fastest times of the day.

Promotion up to the “A” team brought the best out of Wendy Roethenbaugh and Lizzie Poole and the pair performed well to run 12:14 and 13:21 respectively to see the team home 50th overall.

Rose Leivers (13:24), Rita Fisher (14:20) and Jo Potter (14:24), fresh from her half marathon PB-performance the weekend before, combined to cross the line in 83rd (and 21st “B” team) out of 98 complete teams.

James O’Mara was the club’s sole representative in the U20M race, clocking 9:48 over the 3k course to finish 49th on the opening leg.

The final event of the day saw twelve Heanor RC runners in action for the senior men’s event. Stuart King, Steve Ashmore and Carl Hughes got the three HRC teams underway on the first of four 5k legs.

On a competitive opening leg, Stuart ran almost thirty seconds faster than last year to clock 16:05 and cross the line 35th. Handing over to Joe Rainsford (16:26), the twenty-one year old continued the momentum to bring the team up into the top-30.

Matt Bickerstaff took over on leg three and gained another position on his way to running a time of 16:50 before James Mee (16:57) anchored the quartet home to a 24th-place finish.

Steve Ashmore (18:19) got the “B” team ball rolling with a 109th-place finish on leg one. Danny Heathcote (18:35), Rob Page (19:39) and Tony Weatherson (19:54) completed the team’s efforts as they finished just inside the top-100 in 96th.

Only sixteen positions further back, the “C” team, comprising Carl Hughes (20:17), Andy Parkin (19:55), Paul Mercer (20:11) and Gary Mellors (19:49), all ran within half-a-minute of each other on their way to finishing 7th “C” team of thirteen overall.

Full results HERE

Photos: Facebook

Next up for Heanor RC is another North Midlands Cross Country League and BDL double-header next weekend.

Saturday sees a return to Kettering for the second North Mids fixture of the season, with both the senior men’s and women’s teams looking to build on their fine top-3 finishes in the first fixture at Markeaton Park last month. The following day, the yellow and blue will be taking to the line for the second BDL race of the winter at Chaddesden Park.