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Stratford juniors make their mark in latest round of West Midlands Young Athletes Cross-Country League

A DOMINANT display from Alex Adams saw him storm to victory in the U17 men’s race at Warley Woods in the third round of the West Midlands Young Athletes Cross-Country League.

Stratford’s endurance runners were out in force for the fixture and in an impressive showing, Adams won his race by a comfortable 56 seconds. Milo Cullimore (24th, 19:21), Jaicob Ford (27th, 19:37) and Henry Wheeler (28th, 19:39) rounded out the team who consolidated fifth place in the standings.

The U17 ladies get their race under way. (61280749)
The U17 ladies get their race under way. (61280749)

The U17 women started the day with Maisie-Joy Spriggs (9th, 18:30) finishing inside the top ten, followed by Abbi Cooper (14th,19:06) with her highest placing of the season. Next to cross the line were Tilly Campbell (37th, 24:33) and Abigail Skinner (39th, 25:38). Niamh Hillard was forced to pull-up due to illness. At the midway point, the team lies in third place.

Next up were the U11 boys and in a fine display Toby Ledgard (28th, 7:55) finished inside the top 30 for the first time this season. Close behind were Eli Ford (33rd, 8:04) and debutant Tom Yates (37th, 8:07). Toby Wilkinson (89th, 9:37) and Tyler Li (93rd, 9:52) completed the team who climbed up to ninth spot.

It was then the turn of the U11 girls. Amelie Marshall (25th) pipped Maggie Silvers (27th) to the line, with both recording time of 8:29.

They were followed by Jasmine Mothershaw (32nd, 8:35), Ruby Whyman Bean (108th, 11:08) and Layla Sparrow (109th, 11:30). The Stratford U11 girls are currently in seventh position.

First home for Stratford in the U15 boys’ race was Will Mayes (10th, 12:23), followed closely by brothers Sam (13th, 12:28) and Zak Lambert (14th, 12:29).

Tom Fisher was next (18th, 12:49) followed by James Day (22nd, 13:03), Charlie Clayton (38th, 13:57), James Mayes (33rd, 13:45) and Luca De Freitas Pires (38th, 13:57). It was then the turn of Josh Harrison (41st, 14:03) and Seb Hillard (58th, 15:02) to cross the line.

Rounding off the U15s was Ewan Sparrow who finished in a season’s best 68th in 17:54. The squad maintained second place in the league.

Stratford's U15 boys' squad. (61280743)
Stratford's U15 boys' squad. (61280743)

In the U13 girls’ race, Marijke Tear-Verweij yet again showed her running prowess as she finished fourth to remain joint-second in the league. She was followed by Lois Ford (12th, 11:54), Portia Nabney (24th, 12:30), Ava Sheppard (32nd, 12:34), Amelia Peeke (36th, 13:02), Rachel Sparrow (57th, 14:07) and Georgia Sharpe (73rd, 14:53). Currently, the U13 girls lie in overall third position.

Then it was the turn of Stratford’s all-conquering U13 boys’ team and there were four black and gold vests in the top five.

Arthur Williamson (2nd, 10:13) led the way and he was followed by Aran Cooper (3rd, 10:18), Will Hovell (4th,10:22) and Joel Ledgard (5th, 10:28).

Kipp Stevens (17th, 11:14), Sam Plumb (18th, 11:16), Arthur Mansbridge (29th, 11:48) and Toby Spriggs (74th, 14:23) completed the team who stretched their lead after taking overall first for the third straight match.

The U15 girls finished the day’s racing on a team high. First home for Stratford was Annie Silvers (18th, 14:53) and she was followed by Martha Peters (26th,15:25), Bo Algate (31st,16:05), Tessa Parkin (44th, 16:51), Harriet Black (49th,17:27), Hannah Wilkinson (52nd, 17:37), Charlotte Skinner (57th, 18:23) and Brooke Rossney (18:52). The U15 girls maintained fifth place in the league.

Overall, Stratford are third in the league out of 21 clubs. The next fixture is at Nuneaton’s Pingles Stadium on 15th January.

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