National Inter-Counties Cross-Country Championships 10th March 2012 Report
Annabel Gummow took a silver medal at the National Inter Counties Championships held at Cofton Park, Birmingham on Saturday and Hobie Martin came close to a medal with a fourth place.
Both were representing Cornwall in this Annual event held on the rolling parkland close to the old Cowley motor works. Annabel had set her sights on beating Emelia Gortecka and after a start down in the twenties, she soon made her way up alonside her rival and a Scottish athlete. Mid-way through the final lap, Annabel briefly held the lead but Gorecka closed this and eventually pulled away for her sixth consecutive Championship win with Gummow a clear silver placing. April Hogg ran strongly in this age group to finish at 54th & with Charlotte Williamson at 103rd and Caitlin Mulroy 121st, the Under 20's finished 14th from 22 complete County teams.
Hobie Martin had team mate Callum Jones for company over the early laps of the Under 17 Men's race, the pair always just behind a breakaway trio. Martin looked strong as he held on to his top five placing and eventually sprinted down the home straight for a superb fourth but a recent injury took it's toll on Jones who dropped back rapidly in the final section & just made it to the line before falling to the ground for 74th. Tom Rawet was closing all the time at 81st.
The day started with the Under 20 Men's event where Dan Nash had to recover from a flight back from a university interview in Scotland, arriving at the team hotel after midnight. However this didn't seem to affect him as he got into the race shoulder to shoulder with Conor Robinson in the top twenty. These two held their placings over the first two laps with Dan gradually improving into the top fifteen and Conor slipping back with the pair finishing 23rd and 48th respectively.
Isabel Steele had moved up to the Under 17's this year but is still producing some fine results. She kept up with the top end of the race around the top twenty mark until well into the second and final lap, sprinting in a closely grouped pack down the home straight to finish 33rd.
In the Under 15 Boys race, Danny Old worked his way through the field over the second half of the race, overtaking the County's leading runner, Sam Lane De Courtin who was consistent in the top 100. Danny picked up to 52nd with Sam at 88th.
The Under 15 Girls had suffered the loss of the top two athletes through recent injuries and calling an end to their winter season but Yvonne Chart took on the challenge to produce a superb result over the two medium lap course to finish 50th with Annie Trotter at 124th and Tess Masselink 128th.
Leading the youngest Senior Women's team that team manager, Dave Varney can remember, Dani Barnes showed sparks of the old form that she had over track and cross country as an Under 20, where she won a Great Britain team Gold medal and bodes well for her summer season. In a high quality race, she looked comfortable in the top 50 over an 8Km three lap distance which she held all the way to finish 58th. Rachel Baker also looked in good form for 123rd.
With a full compliment of 40 Counties and Regional teams completing the Under 13 Girls race, they produced the best team placing of the day at 24th and the closest finish between the first two athletes. Ellie Ringwood was the fastest out of the pen at the massed start of 250 girls but the County's leading athlete, Lily England pulled back the lead with Katie Hughes and Abby Cayton-Smith close behind. Over a one lap 3km course, they were all in the top 100, Hughes closed a gap that England had built up with the pair chasing to the finish with Lily at 72nd, Katie at 75th and am improving Abby at 102nd. Yoyo Barnsley suffered with stitch but put in a brave race for the fourth scoring place at 179th.
The Under 13 Boys competed over the same distance and had another pair of top 100 finishers from Frankie Aldred who finished 68th and Sam Parham just 5 seconds behind at 66th. The team was completed by fine runs from Max Caddy at 145th and Sam Bray at 156th with over 300 completing the course.