Tyne Bridge too strong for Sunderland Harriers in title defence on Newcastle Town Moor

Ian Ritchie led Sunderland Harriers home at Heaton
Ian Ritchie led Sunderland Harriers home at Heaton
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Sunderland Harriers, the defending Heaton Harriers Memorial 10k team champions, had to settle for second place after a powerful team performance by Tyne Bridge Harriers at Newcastle’s Town Moor yesterday.

The Wearsiders were no match for the superior packing of the Newcastle club, who had their four counters inside the first five finishers.

While Sunderland had to wait until 21st position before their final scorer finished in a field of 700, the Newcastle club were celebrating a resounding success.

Tyne Bridge Harrier Mark Fenwick took the race comfortably in 31min 30sec and he was followed by James Dunce in second (31.54). Finn Brodie was third (32.01), Birtley’s Adrian Bailes finished fourth (32,05) and Tyne Bridges’ final scorer was Tom Charlton in fifth (32.54).

Sunderland were led home by Ian Ritchie in 10th (33.43) in a personal best by 35 seconds, and he was followed by Nathan Reed, back from injury, in 12th (33.48).

Jason Waite showed he is making steady progress after a long lay-off to finish 18th (34.47), while Jake Jansen was the team’s final runner home in 21st (35.01), just ahead of Houghton Harrier Lee Dover who was 22nd in 35.12. Rory Graham was 45th (36.29).

Sunderland’s Tony Thompson was second over-60 to finish in 40.34. Alan Hodgson was 52nd (37.01).

The first Sunderland Stroller was Michael Henderson in 68th (38.18) and Ed Sweeney ended 86th (38.54).

The women’s race was won by Tyne Triathlon’s Helen Waugh in 37.16 from Birtley’s Chloe Price (37.20).

Sunderland Harriers’ improving Colleen Compson was third over-40 in a personal best of 42.29. Rachael Moore clocked 43.33 and Vicki Cotton 44.47.

Houghton Harrier Gillian Tomlinson recorded 45.11 for fourth over-45. Hasina Khanom was the first Sunderland Stroller home in 45.51.

In the younger age group races, Jess Fox won the junior under-20s women’s 5k in 18.58 and Eve Quinn was third (19.27). Clubmate Jack Tallentire was fifth man (16.28). Connor Price was third under-13.

Houghton Harriers had Lydia James and Eva Hardie second and third respectively in the under-15 3k.

Two Sunderland Harriers and one Sunderland Stroller won team medals in the British and Irish International Cross Country at Glasgow on Saturday.

They were all representing England at Tollcross Park. Paul Merrison won a team gold for the over-55 event.

Kevin Jeffress won team silver in the over-35s, while Lynne Valentine gained silver in the over-60s. Harrier Michael Thompson finished 10th in the reserves’ race.