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Stratford AC's Alex Adams wins 23rd straight West Midland Young Athletes' Cross-Country League race win

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ALEX Adams stormed to his 23rd consecutive West Midland Young Athletes’ Cross-Country League race victory to help Stratford AC secured an overall fourth-placed finish.

Alex Adams.
Alex Adams.

Having already clinched his fifth title with a round to spare, Adams rounded off another fine league season at the Pingles Stadium in Nuneaton with success in the three-lap U17m race in 17:12. The Chipping Campden student led from the start and went on to finish 35 seconds ahead of the second-placed runner from Birchfield Harriers. He is now all set to perform on the national stage in the final few representative races of the season.

Also competing in the U17m race were Theo Skirvin (25th, 19:43) and Caleb Spriggs (34th, 20:33), who both ran strong races to give the team fourth place overall across the season, only missing third place and a medal by a handful of points.

In the U17W, Charly Marshall (2nd, 15:54) saved her best performance of the year for the final race. Ellie Deaner (31st, 19:43) and Abigail Skinner (34th, 20:23) competed well, giving another solid team performance overall.

Toby Spriggs (37th, 08:39) ran his usual exuberant race to finish first for Stratford in the U11B in what was a very consistent first season. Toby Wilkinson (62nd, 09:12), Callum Linforth (76th, 09:41) and Henry Thomas (88th, 10:21) completed the team, which finished in eighth place overall.

Stella Sant (20th, 08:36) had another excellent race in the U11G, once again leading the team home. Amelia Marshall (35th, 09:02), Rachel Sparrow (46th, 09:20), Jasmine Mothershaw (51st, 09:29) and Georgia Sharpe (53rd, 09:31) worked hard together in a blur of yellow and black in the middle of the pack.

The U15B have become one of Stratford’s strongest teams of the season and Milo Cullimore (17th, 12:56), Henry Wheeler (21st, 13:10), Will Mayes (24th, 13:16), James Day (27th, 13:26) and Gabriel Gaiser (33rd, 13:35) were well bunched for the five scoring positions. Hugh Markham (39th, 13:55), Seb Hillard (47th, 14:23), Alex Macmillan (60th, 15:24) and Joe Lewis (64th, 16:10) also finished as the team won a very well-deserved second place overall.

Due to illness and injury, the U13G had a depleted team, but Lois Ford (16th, 11:07) had a great outing, holding her place throughout the race. Ava Sheppard (40th, 11:58) and Tessa Parkin (43rd, 12:02) ran together for much of the race, with the former just managing an extra effort at the finish to gain a few places. The team finished in seventh place overall in the league.

Joel Ledgard (18th, 10:13) shot off round the inside of the first bend to get himself well up into the leading pack in the U13B race, and then managed to hold his position in a well-fought contest. Alfie Musk (39th, 11:23), Arthur Mansbridge (50th, 12:13) and Ewan Sparrow (59th, 13:22) all worked well.

In the U15G race, all eyes were on Maisie-Joy Spriggs (2nd, 13:29). Having already secured second place in the league with a race to spare, Spriggs was aiming for her first league win. A group of three broke off the front of the race on the first lap, and, by the second lap, it was down to two. In the end Spriggs didn’t quite have enough left in the tank for the win but she should be delighted with her best ever season.

Maisie-Joy Spriggs.
Maisie-Joy Spriggs.

Niamh Hillard (8th, 14:19) and Maddie Linfoot (12th, 14:47) both had excellent races to finish consistent seasons. Lucy Thomas (27th, 15:53), Martha Peters (37th, 16:07), Abbi Cooper (41st, 16:18), Alice Cottam (43rd, 16:20), Emily Cottam (49th, 16:46), Hannah Wilkinson (54th, 17:05), Charlotte Skinner (56th, 17:07) and Tilly Campbell (60th, 17:42) made up the rest of the Stratford team which finished in a deserved third place.

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