Three North East athletes in with a shout of Denmark selection

The Inter Counties Cross Country Championships at Prestwold Hall, Loughborough, on Saturday, also hosts the World Cross Country Trials.

Wednesday, 6th March 2019, 11:22 am
Houghton Harriers England 1,500m champions Henry Johnson and Will Bellamy.

They will be held at Aarhus, in Denmark, on March 30, for Senior and Under-20 athletes.

The North East squad have a possible three athletes that could make the team in Morpeth Harrier Carl Avery and his Under-20 team-mate Rory Leonard, plus Shildon’s Kate Avery.

Team Managers Stewy Bell (Blackhill Bounders) and Houghton Harrier Lynn Cooper have been forced to be make changes to their original Senior squads that were named on January 27.

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Sunderland Harrier Alice Smith and Gateshead Harrier Brighid Dennehy replace Sale’s Sonia Samuels and Wallsend’s Danielle Hodgkinson.

In the men’s team, Gateshead Harrier Conrad Franks and Tyne Bridge Harrier Finn Brodie come in for Durham City Harrier Dan Jenkin and Tyne Bridge Harrier Carl Smith.

The Senior Women’s team is: Georgia Campbell (Jarrow and Hebburn), Emma Holt (Morpeth), Danielle Smythe (Heaton), Kate Avery (Shildon), Rachel Lundgren (Hallamshire), Catriona Macdonald (Morpeth), Helen Warburton (Gosforth), Alice Smith (Sunderland) and Brighid Dennehy (Gateshead).

Senior Men: Greg Jayasuriya (Midd and Cleveland), Kieran Walker (Midd Athletics Club), Jack Willis (Midd and Cleve), Calum Johnson (Gateshead),Phil Wylie (Cheltenham), Carl Avery (Morpeth), Adrian Bailes (Birtley), Finn Brodie (Tyne Bride) and Conrad Franks (Gateshead).

The North East will also be relying on the youngsters to get involved in the medal chase.

Houghton Harriers have seven athletes selected for the younger age groups events. They are: Under-17s: Will Bellamy and Henry Johnson. Under-17 Women: Eva Hardie, Lydia James and Anna Pigford. Under-15 Girls: Amy Leonard and Under-13 Boys: Brandon Pye.

Sunderland Harriers have three athletes in the Under-20 Women’s team with Sarah Knight, Eve Quinn and Hayley Dobinson.

Houghton Harriers have pulled off a unique double with two of their athletes winning Under-17 National outdoor and indoor 1,500m titles.

Henry Johnson followed Will Bellamy in winning the Under-17 Indoor England Championship 1,500m title at Sheffield in a PB of 3.58.57.

Bellamy had won the outdoor title at Bedford in August, with 4.03.04. His PB stands at 3.56.96.

Both athletes have an impressive list of PBs over the middle distances, with Bellamy also clocking 8.47.42 for 3,000m and 1.55.99 for 800m. Johnson’s best for 800m stands at 1.55.99.

At the final North Eastern Harrier League at Alnwick on Saturday, the Sunderland Harriers Cross Country Grand Prix was finalised.

The result was: 1 Paul Redman 51 points, 2 Alice Smith 49, 3 Steve Rankin 42, 4 Darren Stoker 42, 5 Alan McManus 38. 67 athletes were involved in the competition.

Sunderland Harriers won the team race in the Dalton Park 10km multi-terrain race on Sunday.

They were headed by Aidan Crowe, who finished 11th in 36.59, and the other two runners set personal bests. They were Paul MacLachlan in 15th (37.57) and Kris Cantle 24th (39.41).

Sunderland Strollers took the women’s title with Alyson Dixon (35.41), Wendy Chapman (41.14) and Hasina Khanom (46.39).

Washington Running Club saw their women gain promotion to the Second Division in the North Eastern Harrier League and their men finished eighth in the Third Division. On Saturday, the men were led home by Paul Roddy in 34th.

Birtley Athletics Club stage their third annual Cross Country Relays at Lord Lawson School on Sunday. Postcode DH3 2LP.

Timetable: 10.15am U11 Boys/U11 Girls (3x1.25k). Athletes must be under 11 on day of race. 10.45am U13 Boys/U13 Girls (3x1.65k). 11.20am U15/U17 Boys/U15/U17 Girls (3x2.5k).