KATIE Brough’s form this winter has been rewarded with a call-up to the British team for next month’s SPAR European Cross Country Championships in Belgrade.

Fourth senior woman to finish Saturday’s trial race in Liverpool, she will become the latest distance runner from Vale Royal Athletics Club to gain international honours.

The 31-year-old only switched to the Knights Grange-based club earlier this year to work with endurance coach Andy Carter.

She is part of a 36-strong Great Britain and Northern Ireland squad named on Tuesday.

Gemma Steel – a standout winner during Saturday’s trial race at Sefton Park – leads the senior women’s challenge alongside Julia Bleasdale, who finished eighth in both the 5,000m and 10,000m at the Olympic Games in London.

Former world junior 1,500m champion, Steph Twell, is included too.

Britain topped the Euro Cross medals table for the fifth successive year last time out in Budapest, winning twice as many gongs as closest rivals Russia.

Neil Black, British Athletics Performance Director, is looking for a repeat this time around.

He said: “We have a great record at these championships in recent years and I’m confident that the athletes selected will continue that in Belgrade.”

Stevie Stockton, then 20, returned home from Dublin with a team gold medal from the under 23s women’s category four years ago.

Another Vale Royal member, Charlotte Roach, did the same in the under 20s category in Spain in 2007.

This year’s race is scheduled for Sunday week, December 8.

SPAR European Cross Country Championships
Great Britain and Northern Ireland team
Senior women:
Julia Bleasdale (Hillingdon); Katie Brough (Vale Royal); Lauren Deadman  (Havering Mayesbrook); Lauren Howarth (Leigh Harriers); Gemma Steel (Charnwood); Stephanie Twell (Aldershot, Farnham & District)