East Midlands Cross Country League Race 5

Well who would have thought it? With the mildest winter for a long while, elevated tempretures and a hose pipe ban probably looming, it was typical that the last East Midlands Cross Country League at Darley Park was a wet and muddy one, with rain falling for the previous 12 hours and continuing throughout the morning on this very grassy, rolling hilly course.

With LERC sending a detachment of athletes to Abu Dhabi to compete in various triathlons and many club members training for summer road marathons, it was pherhaps a surprise that 14 Men and 1 lady turned out for this race.

Andy Peat was first home in 5th place, possibly feeling very lonely amongst the green vests of the Nottingham University teams. Paul Lewis was 11th, giving a strong performance in only his second race of this season, while the ever present Rob Fox was 21st, closely chased by Ian Chant (23rd). The next 3 runners have a had a season long battle and kept it going till the end. Well done to Pete Webb (29th in 38m 57s), Dave Boot (30th in 39m 36s) and Mark Lay (33rd 39m 36s). Closing in on that trio was Rich Howe in 35th (40m 17s), and other runners to make up the LERC men's team were Paul Burchall (54th), Martin Matthews (56th), Dave Clough (59th), Club Captain Shaun Burton (66th) and Mr Pheidippides himself Damian Cowlishaw (71st). Bringing home the club flag was Pete Sturgess in 76th.

The sole lady to turn out was Cheryl Brown (26th), who 24 hours earlier completed a 21 mile fell recce run of the 4 inns challenge route.

So, with the final race completed, the final standings saw the LERC men's A team finish in 2nd, the B team 3rd and the C team also 3rd in their category. The vets teams also performed well, with the A team placing 3rd, the B team 1st and the C team 1st in their respective categories. Not surprisingly, the Nottingham University took 1st place in all of the A,B,C,D and E competitions.

Report provided by Damian Cowlishaw.

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