Defeat for Woodford Athletic Club sees drop to second (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Woodford Athletic Club finish second to Highgate, dropping a place to second in the league standings
In the second Active Training World London Metropolitan Cross Country league, Woodford Athletic Club’s men finished second to Highgate, dropping a place to second in the league standings.
Woodford’s women finished third and as a result drop to third place in their league.
In the men’s race Herts Phoenix’s Neilson Hall led the whole way, winning by 26 seconds. Woodford’s Gunby fought hard to finish fifth – a finish he was reasonably satisfied with, but will be hoping to improve on at the European trials in Liverpool this week.
Martyn Cryer had endured a tough fortnight in the run up to the race and his attendance had been in doubt. Cryer did compete however, posting a strong 18th-place finish.
Bertie Powell, starting his 45th Met League race, put months of injury trouble and a loss of confidence behind him to finish 23rd – his 45th consecutive scoring 12 finish.
Recovering from a marathon in October, Tom Beedell came in in 34th but will be looking to maintain upward progress going forward.
In the individual competition, which sees the top seven men across the season earn prize money, Woodford’s highest-placed male runners are Matt Gunby in third, Martyn Cyer in eighth, Kevin Murphy in 17th, Bertie Powell in 18th, James Stockings in 22nd and Darren Southcott in 23rd.
For the women’s A Team, two full teams of 12 turned out for the second time this season and the girls got off to a strong start with Georgie Sales, Lauren Stewart, Sara Bird and Kat Gundersen leading the action.
Sales led the girls home with tenth-placed finish, followed in by Stewart in 11th who was mere three seconds off the top ten. Crossing the line in third was Bird, making her return to cross country.
The girls ended the day in third, with Serpentine remaining top and Shaftesbury holding onto second spot.
Elsewhere there were strong showings from the younger runners with Isabella Hoy and Jessica Burgess winning their respective races in the girl’s Under-13’s and women’s Under-17’s categories.
Perry Rowan, Canaan Soloman and George Hoy came third, fifth and 17th respectively to put the men’s Under-17’s in third place.