Northern Cross Country Championships, Pontefract, Saturday 29th January 2022 - report by Kirsty Robinson
The conditions for the Northern Cross Country Championships at Pontefract were far from ideal - with gale force winds meaning that no club tents were allowed on the course, and even the main marquee had to be dismantled. Despite this, a contingent of athletes from Birtley AC battled the wind and did their club proud. It was also great to see quite a few Birtley spectators there to cheer the team on, especially a number of coaches who continued to give up their own time to support all of us.
Under 13 Boys
Noah Williamson finished an excellent 8th in a time of 10 mins and 51 secs. He was followed by Callum Bailey in 88th position in a time of 12 mins and 38 secs.
Under 13 Girls
Niamh Phillipson finished in 40th position in a time of 12 mins and 48 secs.
Under 15 Girls
Daisy Graham finished in 97th position in a time of 19 mins and 35 secs.
Under 17 Boys
Chris Perkins finished in a fantastic 5th in a time of 21 mins and 13 secs. He was followed by George Beevers who finished in 56th position in a time of 23 mins and 40 secs.
Under 17 Girls
Katie Francis finished in 30th position in a time of 19 mins and 48 secs.
Tess Graham had a great race to finish in 16th place in a time of 22 mins and 40 secs.
Ian Robinson had a cracking race to finish in 99th position out of over 500 men in a time of 48 mins and 34 secs. It was also good to see Jason Williamson running and finishing in 444th position in a time of 1 hour 4 mins and 8 secs.
Kirsty Robinson finished in 187th position in a time of 45 mins and 35 secs. She was followed by Kelly Bentley in 218th position in a time of 47 mins and 47 secs.
Some of our athletes in action (photos courtesy of Northern athletics)
Remember the date - Sunday 16th January 2022. The day that Birtley AC not only hosted an event but dominated it as well. Our annual Birtley AC XC Relays were once again held at our club HQ Lord Lawson of Beamish School with a healthy entry from our friends from other NE Athletics Clubs, and bolstered by a fantastic 13 Teams from our very own Birtley ranks. Myself and Kirstin had the unenviable task of picking the teams but fortunately most of the age categories sorted themselves with only a couple of adjustments needed. For once Kirstin wanted Lorna to be a couple of months older but this was solved with Kirstin and Lisa running 'down an age group'. It was especially pleasing to see lots of our newer members getting involved and wanting to take part in a club competition.
Conditions on the day were ideal for racing and the 2 lap 3K circuit proved popular with all the athletes and spectators alike. First race off was the Vet Mens Relay and our very own Andrew Beevers ran a storming first leg to come home in the lead and setting the Fastest Leg time in the process. Phil Atkinson and myself (PJB) continued the good work to finish in 5th place and more importantly second V45-54 Team. This earned us a NEMAA Silver Team Medal which was my first since joining Birtley AC and very much appreciated. Our other two V45-54 teams both ran well including David Money making his club debut and Nigel Simpson who despite recovering from Covid agreed to run 'A Team Down' to help me out.
Next up were our amazing Birtley Ladies and they certainly didn't disappoint. Katie Francis lead from gun to tape on Leg 1 setting the Fastest Time handing over to Hannah and Chloe who competed the job to comfortably win the race. Our V35-44 Trio of Lisa, Lorna and Kirstin finished a magnificent 4th which resulted in a NEMAA Silver Medal also. Stars of the show were our V55 Ladies who destroyed the opposition to win NEMAA Gold Medals - step forward Julie Turner, Stephanie Young and Maggie Pavlou. This was a fantastic performance from the ladies, and Julie also ran the Fastest Leg time too. All the ladies teams ran well and the support and camaraderie they have within the squad is clear to see and I can only see our Ladies Section going from strength to strength.
The Senior Men brought the curtain down and our A Team were unfortunate to come up against an extremely strong Morpeth Harriers on the day. Chris Perkins ran a brilliant first leg to set the second fastest time of the day. Craig Buchanan gave everything he had (post Covid too) and Adrian did all he could but Morpeth were just too good and our lads finished gallant runners up. B Team saw a welcome return to action for Ross Thraves, ably supported by Juniors George Beevers and Robbie Mumford. George in particular ran an unbelievable race to record 10.16 - ONLY 2 seconds slower than Dad Andrew.
All in all a fantastic day for our club and one which we can all feel proud of. Huge Thank You to everyone involved with the event - runners, course set up/take down, cake bakers/sellers and supporters. Our next Relay Event will be The Royal Signals Relays at Hetton Lyons Park on Saturday 19th February - let's build on our success from yesterday and have another fantastic Birtley AC Turn Out.
Race 1 Vet Men.
5 Birtley V45-54 A 34.43 Silver Medal NEMAA
Andrew Beevers 10.14 Fastest Leg
Phil Atkinson 12.20
Paul Brennan 12.09
18 Birtley V45-54 B 37.38
Paul Agnew 13.27
Graeme Swaddle 12.54
Nigel Simpson 11.17
29 Birtley V45-54 C 40.21
Ian Goulding 12.56
David Money 14.23
Jason Williamson 13.02
Race 2 Senior/Vet Ladies
1 Birtley SW A 36.08
Katie Francis 11.16 Fastest Leg
Hannah Linton 13.17
Chloe Price 11.35
4 Birtley WV35-44 A 38.42 Silver Medal NEMAA
Lisa Short 12.31
Lorna Graham 12.32
Kirstin Farquhar 13.39
14 Birtley SW B 41.21
Amy Drummond 13.30
Eve Southern 13.43
Scarlett Newby 14.08
17 Birtley SW C 42.22
Kirsty Robinson 14.46
Charlotte Coffield 15.53
Tess Graham 11.43
27 Birtley WV55 46.47 Gold Medal NEMAA
Julie Turner 13.55 Fastest Leg
Steph Young 14.51
Maggie Pavlou 18.01
32 Birtley WV45-54 A 47.31
Kay Drummond 15.08
Alyson McTeer 17.13
Zoe Towers 15.10
51 Birtley WV45-54 B 55.11
Kay Elliott 17.27
Elaine Brownless 17.02
Claire Braban 20.42
52 Birtley WV35-44 B 56.46
Leanne Adair 16.57
Natalia Jordan 19.14
Sara Francis 20.35
Race 3 Senior Men
2 Birtley A 29.31
Chris Perkins 9.10
Craig Buchanan 10.48
Adrian Bailes 9.33
7 Birtley B 34.53
Ross Thraves 12.38
George Beevers 10.16
Robbie Mumford 11.59
Happy New year, can you believe we are in to 2022!
I would just like to take this opportunity to thank you for supporting Heel & Toe over the past few years, it is greatly appreciated especially with the current pandemic we are facing, thank you very much.
The fundraising team are currently finalising events and we are excited to announce, we have some new events to try throughout 2022!!!
Although we are finalising most events, I just wanted to let you know the closing date to register your child/children interest in the mini/junior GNR is Friday 4th Feb 2022. You can register your child NOW at https://heelandtoe.org.uk/events/mini-junior-gnr-2022/, registration fee is £5 per child.
I would appreciate it if you are able to pass on this information to any child/children who attend your club.
I wish you all the best for 2022, and hopefully I will see you at a Heel & Toe event this year J
Following a lovely Christmas and New Year break, we return to our normal training routine on Tuesday 4th January, meeting as usual at Lord Lawson School. Parents, if you are coming indoors at the academy, please wear a mask if at all possible to comply with current regulations. Thank you, hope to see lots of you there!