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Twell among territorials aiming World Cross

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25 January 2008



Several of the athletes who helped Norwich Union Great Britain and Northern Ireland to their record medals haul at last month’s European Cross Country Championships will be in action for their clubs tomorrow at the traditional territorial cross country championships. Among them…


Double European Junior Cross Country Champion Stephanie Twell (Aldershot, Farnham and District AC) races at the South of England AA Championships at Parliament Hill Fields, London, a fortnight after her stunning run into fourth place at the BUPA Great Edinburgh International.


Her club mate Andy Vernon, who won the individual bronze medal while helping the Norwich Union Great Britain and Northern Ireland Men to the Under 23 Team title in Toro, is looking forward to his first tilt at the Senior Men’s title, currently held by Phil Wicks (Belgrave Harriers), who was in last year’s Worlds team in Kenya.


Billy Farquharson (Notts AC), who has been battling knee problems since the Euro Cross in Toro, is determined to defend his Midlands title at Royal Leamington Spa, explaining: “I’m a bit rusty – the knees are about 90% fit – but I need to get back into racing if I’m going to get to the Worlds.”


Junior Emily Pidgeon (Gloucester AC) is in the Senior Women’s race as part of her campaign to reach the World Cross Country Championships in Holyrood Park, Edinburgh, on 30 March.


Another of the Toro team, Hatti Dean (Hallamshire Harriers Sheffield) is the reigning Senior Women’s Champion as the Northern Championships return for the first time in a decade to Roundhay Park, Leeds – a venue that has been renovated but is still as rugged a test as ever. It’s a fitting reminder to the starters of all ages that there’s no easy route to cross country success!


The Midlands meeting begins at 11.30am at Newbold Comyn, Royal Leamington Spa. For details, go to http://www.midlandathletics.org.uk/mcaa_012.htm


The Northern Championships also start at 11.30am. Find all the details at http://www.northernathletics.org.uk/Pages/Event.aspx?id=160&EventID=34


The South of England AA Championships start at 11am. The SEAA website is down at the moment but the timetable is available at http://www.ehac.co.uk/fixtures.php?event=771