National Cross Country success

Calder Valley Fell Runners – 28 March 2022

A golden double for Clara

Calder Valley juniors had three runners that made it through three rounds of qualifications –  schools, district and county – to represent Team West Yorkshire at the 2022 English National Schools Cross Country Championships. The event was held at the Market Harborough show ground in Leicestershire on a surprisingly warm Saturday afternoon. The course was flat and dry and made for a very fast and competitive race against some of the best runners in the country and with a very strong line up in each race.

Clara, Harry and Joseph. Team medal winners

First to run (2.7km) was Year 6 Boy, Harry Cliff, who ran faster than at his local park run and averaged 6 minute miles, representing Riverside School and team West Yorkshire. He finished a strong 65th out of 138 with an excellent time of 10min 5secs. As the 8th placed ‘counter’, Harry helped West Yorkshire pick up the boys’ team gold.

Clara just checking that’s she’s well in the lead

Second to run (3km) was Clara McKee, Year 7 Girl representing Calder High School and Team West Yorkshire. Clara finished very comfortably in first place to win gold with an amazing time of 10min 40sec. She also added to her individual gold medal by picking up girls’ team gold for West Yorkshire. Earlier in the week it was doubtful that Clara would be running at all as a sore knee nearly kept her out of the competition.

Last but not least to run (3km) was Joseph Stone, Year 7 Boy representing Ryburn Valley High School and Team West Yorkshire, finishing a strong 28th out of 115 with an excellent time of 10mins 49secs. Joseph was 3rd counter in his race for the West Yorkshire Team who later, after some confusion with the results, had secured Team Silver.

It was a privilege and an emotional time for all the parents watching their children run so well for their county. They are still on a high by all accounts and one of the parents said it was one of the best days racing they’d watched.

Euan and Thomas enjoying the experience

The weekend before had been the turn of the secondary schools with two of CVFR juniors representing West Yorkshire. It was a lovely sunny day with not a cloud in the sky nor a hill in sight. The race was held way down south in Kent on a very flat fast course. Euan Logue, Year 10/11, ran well representing Todmorden High School. He covered the 5.75km in a time of 23mins 29secs. Thomas McKee, representing Calder High in year 8/9, showed amazing determination as he unfortunately had the back of his fell shoe clipped by spikes at the start and had to run with his shoe half off for the whole race which resulted in them falling off twice. Despite the challenge it was a great experience, with Thomas finishing midfield covering the 4.34km in 15mins 16secs. Both lads really enjoyed representing their county.

– CALDER VALLEY NEWS REPORTER: MARC COLLETT