Spen begin West Yorkshire Cross Country League with trip to Thornes Park

Spen AC's Joe Sager ahead in the early stages of the West Yorkshire Cross Country League race at Thornes Park.
Spen AC's Joe Sager ahead in the early stages of the West Yorkshire Cross Country League race at Thornes Park.

Spenborough Athletics Club made a good start to the cross country season on a sunny autumn day at Thornes Park, Wakefield, last Sunday.

Both the men’s and women’s teams placed eighth at the first West Yorkshire Cross Country League races, which saw almost 700 runners competing in the 10 race programme.

The Spen women were led home by Jenni Muston, who placed 12th, followed by Natasha Greere (56th), Claire Berry (60th), Emma McGuire (68th) and Joanne Burden (75th).

The race was won by international middle distance runner Charlene Thomas, from Wakefield, while former Spen junior Jennifer Walsh made her first appearance for the Harriers this year, after several prolonged spells of injury, and she made a successful comeback to finish second as Harriers had the first four runner home.

In the senior men’s race, Spen’s Joe Sager placed a fine eighth place ahead of team mates Tom Dart (32nd), Paul Davis (37th), Edward Revell (63rd), Richard Hirst (83rd) and Ian Wilson (84th).

Former Northern Cross Country Champion Daniel Garbutt, from Skyrac, won the race.

In the younger age groups, Mia Butler placed 40th in the Under-15 Girls race, Harry Brackenridge was 25th in the Under-15 Boys and Jack Barraclough 51st in the Under-13 Boys.

The highest placed Spenborough runner was Matthew Dalton, who finished third in the Under-11 Boys race, leading the team to eighth place overall, while in the Under-11 Girls event Molly Firth placed seventh, leading the team to a seventh place finish overall.