ANOTHER week, another national title for Vale Royal Athletics Club’s all-conquering under 17s women’s relay team.

Whether on the road or cross country, it appears the trio of Hope Smith, Holly Weedall and Grace Roberts cannot be stopped.

They claimed the National Cross Country Relay Championships title on Saturday to add to the road crown they won last month.

Having also won the Northern cross country title a fortnight before the national meeting at Mansfield’s Berry Hill Park, the trio were in sparkling form once again.

Smith led the team off, completing the first of three 2.5km legs before handing over to Weedall with the team in eighth place.

She pushed on over the next leg and had stormed up to third place before handing over to fellow Sir John Deane’s College student Roberts.

Despite still being some distance down, Roberts rose to the challenge and caught the leader from Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow AC with 300 metres to go before powering up the final hill to secure victory.

Both Weedall and Roberts ran the second-fastest individual times on their respective legs.

The Vale Royal under 17s women’s “B” team of Ellie Bushill, Isobel Ashcroft and Alice Gayle also ran very well to come home in ninth position.

Overall, 40 athletes represented the club across all age groups.

Top-10 finishes were also earned by the under 15s boys’ team and the junior men’s squad.

For the younger team, Tom Corwood, Rhys Bowden and Robbie Price combined to bring the team home in sixth place, with Price running the fastest individual leg in the race.

Raif Serif, Edward Pettitt and William Ashfield linked up for the junior men to finish in eighth place.

Vale Royal’s focus now turns to the next big event of the cross country season – the British Cross Challenge at Liverpool’s Sefton Park on Saturday, November 27.