Aykley Heads was kind to us with blue skies and reasonably solid ground under foot. First up was the U11 Boys race and I’ll hand-over straight away to Henry Pickett to take you through the events from a first-hand perspective:
Race Report for Aykley Heads Cross Country U11 Boys by Henry Pickett
Before we set off we needed to get ready, I wore my Tyne Bridge running top and my Tyne Bridge vest, I packed my jumper and trousers for afterwards. Dad made a packed lunch for after, it was Quorn ham (I’m a pescatarian), mayonnaise and tomato. With it I had crisps. I nearly forgot my race number, oops!
Then we got in the car, I was very bored but before I knew it we were there. We set up our tent with the help of a friendly man as we didn’t know where our group was but then I was called to go and start the race (I was nervous) . They used a gun to start the race!
Everyone went off too quickly, the parents probably thought that we were going to have no energy left. The ground was hard so it ended up not being slippy. There were quite a lot of steep bits, it was hard but the even harder bit was the downhill because I thought that I might have gone out of control – I didn’t want to slip and get hurt. There was one bit where it went up and was slanted!
I started sprinting after I heard people from Tyne Bridge cheering me on and I overtook someone. After the race we went back to our tent and decided to go and watch my mum and see how well other people did. Then we got back to our tent and took the things out and went home.
THANK YOU FOR READING – Henry Pickett
Henry came 50th in a time of 6:22. He was quickly followed by his fellow TBH competitor Laurence Hattaway in 57th in a time of 7 minutes dead. Next up was the U11 girls race and Laura Whitman put in a strong run to finish 47th in a time of 7:08. This was an improvement of two places over the approximately 0.9 mile course compared to her result at Gosforth.
Next up was the U17 men. The new sequence has speeded up the schedule and makes for much better spectating with something always happening on the course. Jake Dorman had a very competitive run coming 22nd from the fast pack in a race time of 19:59 over the two medium laps.
In the U13 boy’s race, we had a great team performance from Zak Kettle in 28th place with a time of 14:08 from fast pack, Jake Moir 42nd in a time of 16:24 and David Carr in 47th place in a time of 14:54 from the fast pack. It was great to see the U13 boys close a team again – can any other ages groups manage that at the next fixture?
(Thanks to Graeme Carr for photos of the U13 boy’s race: top left, Zak and David charging off the start; top right David putting in a strong finish; bottom left Jake climbing the final gruelling hill; bottom middle, David leading some of his fellow competitors on solid leafy ground; bottom right, Zak looking strong at the top of the final climb.)
Lastly the U13 girls which is run, like the boys, over 1 full loop (approximately 2.1 miles). Anna Dorman had a great run coming 25th in a time of 15:25 from fast pack. Amber Maynard demonstrated some fantastic Tyne Bridge spirit having had a foot niggle that has stopped her training this week. She soldiered to 51st place in a time of 18:24.
Next up for the North East Harrier League is the Sherman Cup at Temple Park on Saturday 5th Jan 2019. A great opportunity to burn off some of the Christmas chocolate and hopefully see some more complete teams.