Sunderland youngster in great form

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SUNDERLAND Harriers youngster Jessica Fox ran the race of her life to take second place in the women’s event in the Kielder 10k on Saturday.

The 16-year-old Bede College student clocked a personal best of 43.22 over the challenging Kielder course.

She said: “It was not until 2k that the winner passed me, when I was in third place. But I managed to pass the other girl as the race progressed. I’m really happy to have got a PB over such a tough course. This is easily my best ever performance.’’

The East Herrington athlete finished 43rd overall in a field of 640 and the winner, Fiona Blackett, was 18th (40.44). Third place was taken by Catherine Maclaine in 51st (44.08).

Clubmate Michael Barker finished a creditable fourth at his third attempt to compete in the race. On the previous occasions he failed to make the start after going down with injury. His time of 35.29 would have won him the race in leaner competitive years, but this time the course record was broken and the second runner home equalled it.

Tyne Bridge Harriers dominated with Marc Fenwick’s winning time of 33.37 shattering the previous two-year-old best of 34.24. Shaun Brown was second (34.24) and David Beech was third (35.29) to complete a clean sweep by the Newcastle club.

Sunderland Harriers also had 16-year-old Alex Mitchell in 32nd (42.35), Dean Phillips 36th (42.54) and David Savage 65th (45.09).

In yesterday’s marathon, Ceri Rees, made the long journey from the South West worthwhile to complete his hat trick of victories. He finished just four seconds outside his two-year-old record, recording 2.39.40. Sunderland Stroller Aidan Crowe was 44th (3.27.59). Valley Strider Myra Jones finished 25th overall to win the women’s race (3.17.58).

H In the Great Cumbria Run half marathon, Sunderland Harrier Craig Isherwood finished sixth (1.15.11) in the race won by Border Harrier Julian Hatcher (1.11.22).

H Former Sunderland Harrier Kevin Calvert (18.50) helped Morpeth Harriers finish 12th in the National Six Stage Road Relay Championships at Sutton Coldfield on Saturday. The rest of the club times were Andy Wiles (17.46), Karl Taylor (18.58), Ian Hudspith (17.49), Lewis Timmins (18.07) and Nathan Shrubb (18.49). Aldershot won both the men’s and women’s relays.

Sunderland’s Sophie Burnett (14.05) was in the Birtley team that finished fifth in the under-17 women’s relay yesterday at Sutton Coldfield. Amber Leigh (14.14) and Kate Waugh (13.57) completed the three stage team.