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Running Club junior gets taste of inter-county even

Haverhill Running Club junior Ben Phillips had his first taste of representing his county, finishing in 193rd position in the under-13 race at the Loughborough Inter Counties Cross Country event.

The event – which was split into U13, U15, U17, U20 and Senior categories for both men and women – on Saturday, March 9 had more than 1,000 entrants from across the nation and was the biggest race Phillips had yet competed in.

He did well to finish in a time of 14 minutes and 23 seconds.

Ben Phillips, running for Suffolk U13s at 2019 Cau Inter Counties (7879868)
Ben Phillips, running for Suffolk U13s at 2019 Cau Inter Counties (7879868)

* Haverhill are also preparing to host the final race in the Suffolk Winter League series on Sunday at Castle Manor Academy.

It is a six cross-country race event held by six local running clubs across the winter months, with medals for individuals – split into age categories – and overall team performances.

Sirkka Love currently leads the female 60+ category with two first places and three second places from her five runs. Sue Turley, meanwhile, lies in third position in the female 55+ category after taking part in three events.

Bryan Rootes could also improve on his seventh place in the male 50+ category if he competes at the weekend.

Sunday’s event for seniors will be held over five miles, across a two-lap course from 11am.

Juniors will race over half the distance, completing one lap of the course, and will set-off at 10.40am.

It will be the first time the event will be held at Castle Manor, with previous incarnations at Samuel Ward Academy, but race organiser Hayley Wilson said the land on which the previous event was held had been sold.

* Andrew Bell returned from the Stafford Half Marathon on Sunday with more than bragging points as he came 25th overall, out of 2,828 entrants in a time of 1:19:56.

It was shy of his best-ever time but was still a top time and result for the club member.

There were also four Haverhill runners at the Hampton Court Palace Half Marathon.

Sally Johnston and Louise Harris completed their first-ever half marathon while Luke Withers and Bryn Stuppell both claimed new personal best times.

Finally in the Oundle 20, Ross Arnold also recorded his best-ever run over 20 miles with 2:57:36 while Char Green did well as she ran the distance for the first time.

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