ATHLETICS: Jones leads the way for Rugby & Northampton in Stoke
Dominic Jones led home Rugby & Northampton AC in Division One of the Birmingham Cross Country League, finishing a superb 11th place at Park Hall Country Park in Stoke.
Jones, 24, who won the East Midlands Grand Prix Series during the summer, achieved his highest ever placing when completing the 10k Staffordshire course in 35 minutes and 17 seconds.
Making his debut in the league was junior Haydn Arnall, who became the 60th R&N athlete to make the top 100, finishing 72nd with a time of 39:01, followed by Richard Latimer with a personal best 97th spot in 40:22.
John Gercs was the first M40 veteran home for the club (109th – 40:53), 15 seconds further back was Adnan Haq in 120th, while Jonathan Taylor completed the scoring six (156th – 43:13).
In this second race of the series, R&N duplicated their 15th place from race one, but unfortunately dropped to 16th overall and will need to be at their very best in the final two races to have a chance of avoiding relegation.
The B team placed 13th on the day with Nigel Roberts crossing the line 175th in 44:25. He was followed by fellow veterans Paul Furness (181st – 44:48), Max Chippington (191st – 45:16) and Vince Carroll (193rd – 45:22).
Junior Adam Bebbington recorded 47:05 to finish 216th, and veteran Adrian White closed out in 238th with 49:47. Adrian Reast completed the 13-man squad (251st – 52:14).
The R&N Ladies were also in action, competing at Stratford in the second race of the Midland Womens Cross Country League Division 1.
Three of the scorers from Round One were unable to make the team this time around, leaving the remaining runners facing a tough task. However, they still performed admirably at the event in Warwickshire.
With both divisions running as a combined race, Bethan Goddard was the first club athlete home in 76th place with 31:11. She was joined in the top 100 by veteran Zoe Shepherd, who covered the 6k route in 32:23 for 97th spot.
Junior Kirsty Goddard claimed 108th position in 32:43, and completing the senior team was veteran Alison Cobb in 34:11, who finished 130th, placing the squad 15th overall.
Joining Shepherd and Cobb in the veteran team was Angela Copson BEM (133rd – 34:27), who clinched 10th spot.
Five other athletes also turned out for R&N, which included the veteran trio of Helen Jones (135th – 34:31), Minerva Chesser (159th – 36:25) and Efthymia Katsogianni (175th – 38:19). Rounding off the team were Tilly Lea (183rd – 39:25) and Krasirmira Raykova (188th – 40:12).