Louth Athletics Club juniors battle storm at Northern Cross Country Relays

The Louth under 15 squads, from left, left to right, Taran Dhami, Caleb Stephenson, Lloyd Buck, Hannah Reid, Issy Dhami, Charlotte Merry EMN-171023-163754002
The Louth under 15 squads, from left, left to right, Taran Dhami, Caleb Stephenson, Lloyd Buck, Hannah Reid, Issy Dhami, Charlotte Merry EMN-171023-163754002

Louth Athletics Club entered under 15s teams for the prestigious Northern Cross Country Relays for the first time in many years on Saturday.

All six runners performed very well over a very demanding hilly 2,000m course at Graves Park, in Sheffield, in near galeforce weather conditions, with all of the times affected.

The girls’ race was first off with Issy Dhami on the lead leg for Louth in her first competition at such a high level.

Despite her lack of experience, she finished very strongly in a tight bunch of eight runners, separated by only five seconds, her time given as 8min 55secs and placed 23rd from 40 starters.

Next off was Charlotte Merry, another novice at this level, who battled well through the conditions and clocked 10.02 in another tightly packed group.

On the final leg, Hannah Reid left the starting gate in 27th position and ran very strongly through the worsening conditions to finish in 9.04 and bring the team home in a very respectable 18th place.

She passed nine runners on the course; more than any other athlete on the third leg.

The boys’ race had Lloyd Buck out on the first leg, and with only limited experience at this level, he lost out a little on the start.

But quickly into his impressive running stride, Lloyd carved his way through the field to bring the team home in a fantastic 17th place from 47 starters in a very fast 7min 40secs.

Taran Dhami, a first year under 15 and another first-timer at this level, slipped a few places to older and more experienced athletes.

But he produced a good solid performance to clock 8.51, four seconds faster than his older sister.

Out on the last leg was the most experienced member of the squads, Caleb Stephenson who used his speed and strength well in the galeforce conditions to make up four places and bring the team home in 26th overall with an individual time of 8.10.

Another great team effort, and all eyes are now turned to the English Relay Championships at Mansfield next month.