VALE Royal Athletics Club narrowly missed out on titles in two age-group categories during the Northern Cross Country Relays Championships.

They also added a bronze medal to two silver ones on a successful afternoon in challenging conditions at Graves Park in Sheffield.

“It was another good day for us,” said coach Andy Carter afterwards

“There was at least one Vale Royal team competing in every race, and we came away with six top 10 finishes.”

An in-form under 17s girls’ combination, consisting of Emily Lowery along with twins Lucy and Holly Smith, finished as runners-up to a familiar foe in the shape of Liverpool Harriers.

All three of their splits were among the eight fastest in their age-group with the latter, on the anchor leg, completing the circuit in a time of 8.16.

Vale Royal’s under 13s girls’ trio of Grace Roberts, Alice Gale and Holly Weedall were beaten for the first time this season by impressive rivals from Hallamshire Harriers.

Holly, a student at Weaverham High School, ran the fastest leg in the field while Hartford Church of England High School pupil Grace was third on the overall time-sheet.

Alex Doyle, Sam Evans and Ben Lee took third place in the under 17s boys’ race behind champions Middlesbrough and Lincoln Wellington.

“Alex and Lee were slowed by an injury which makes their performance even more impressive,” added Carter.

Both were among the 10 quickest runners in their class.

Vale Royal’s leading under 15s teams, in both the boys and girls’ categories, were ninth.

Sam Stephens, Will Ashfield and Ed Pettitt were on duty for the former while Faye Conboy, Beth Latham and Francesca Harris raced in the club’s distinctive blue and gold for the latter.

Harris reached the finish in 8.12 – the seventh best split in her race.

Vale Royal fielded four teams in the senior men’s race, and a quartet of Cameron Weaver, Ryan Moore, Stuart Doyle and Matthew Sheen ranked a creditable 10th.

Oliver Williams, Arun Dight, Josh Betteley and Mike Harrington finished inside the top 30 too.

The leading ladies’ team, made up of Kate Moulds, Carolyn Dooley and Helen Smith, classified 27th.

It was a noteworthy day too for husband and wife duo Lee and Hollie Carrington, who made their relay debut for the club in the senior races.


Northern Cross Country Relays Championships

Saturday, October 21

Graves Park, Sheffield

Senior men: 10. Vale Royal AC A (Cameron Weaver, Ryan Moore, Stuart Doyle, Matthew Sheen) 44.53; 29. Vale Royal AC B (Oliver Williams, Arun Dight, Josh Betteley, Mike Harrington) 48.44; 50. Vale Royal AC C (Gareth Williams, Lee Carrington, Richard Murray, Brian Dooley) 53.52; 58. Vale Royal AC D (Chris Weedall, Gary Weedall, Mark Pilliner, Richard Pettitt) 58.36.

Senior women: 27. Vale Royal AC A (Kate Moulds, Carolyn Dooley, Helen Smith) 43.18; 34. Vale Royal AC B (Clara Pettitt, Emma-Louise Pyatt, Lucy Knight) 44.59; 48. Vale Royal AC C (Hollie Carrington, Sarah Gibbs, Liz Gale) 50.07.

Under 17s boys: 3. Vale Royal AC A (Alex Doyle, Sam Evans, Ben Lee) 22.34; 19. Vale Royal AC B (Will McKay, Aaron Doyle, Sam Washington) 25.34.

Under 17s girls: 2. Vale Royal AC A (Emily Lowery, Lucy Smith, Holly Smith) 25.19; 15. Vale Royal AC B (Alicia Kenwright, Cerys Pilliner, Isabelle Davies) 30.56.

Under 15s boys: 9. Vale Royal AC (Sam Stephens, Will Ashfield, Ed Pettitt) 22.59.

Under 15s girls: 9. Vale Royal AC A (Faye Conboy, Beth Latham, Francesca Harris) 26.16.

Under 13s boys: 11. Vale Royal AC (Patrick Griffith, Dylan Carney, Harry Godwin) 18.46.

Under 13s girls: 2. Vale Royal AC A (Grace Roberts, Alice Gale, Holly Weedall) 18.26; 27. Vale Royal AC B (Thea Smith, Emma Holmes, Tarlia Higginbotham) 21.00; 42. Vale Royal AC C (Molly Roberts, Tilly Gibbs, Isabelle Maundrill) 24.08.

Under 11s boys: 29. Vale Royal AC A (Henry Copelin, Elliot Cole, Tom Taylor) 19.55; 31. Vale Royal AC B (Edward Smith, James Fifield, Alfie Murray) 20.24.

Under 11s girls: 17. Vale Royal AC A (Erin Carney, Chloe Hibbert-Green, Lana Booth) 19.57; 22. Vale Royal AC B (Isabelle Prior, Ruby Carrington, Freya Grace) 22.09.