GB’s leading London 2012 Olympic Marathon runner Lee Merrien made a rare outing on his home soil to win Guernsey’s opening cross country league race but, rather surprisingly for a short cross country event on a small island, was only one of Europe’s top marathoners on show as 2006 European marathon champion Ulrike Maisch was the leading woman and her husband Richard Friedrich, a 2:19 runner and a former winner of the Munich Marathon was 5th in the men’s field.
Merrien’s gun to tape victory resulted in a new course record of 14 minutes 14 seconds for the three laps of the twisting but firm Delancey 1 mile loop.
After leading from the gun and going through the opening lap in 4:34 Merrien was clearly on for a fast time. National U17 Steeplechase champion Ed Mason was next through the lap in just below 5 minutes followed by Mike Wilesmith but Mason was soon to retire with a recurrent back injury aggravated by the hills and turns.
With Merrien disappearing into the distance Wilesmith was hunted down by Dave Emery who again underlined his liking of the turf with fast second place in 14 min 58 seconds – equalling Steve Dawes’ old course record.
With Nat Whitty, Sarah Mercier and Louise Perrio off island finishing a creditable 17th in the National Cross Country relays the womens race was wide open but the experienced Ulrike Maisch, more at home on the roads but clearly happy on Delancey’s grass, ran a well paced race to cross the line as first woman in 20th overall and a time of 17 minutes 2 seconds. Laura McCarthy was a good second on 17:29 with Nikki Neal third in 17:46.
This event often proves a good opportunity for the island’s leading junior athletes to race in a mass start field and whilst at the older end of the junior spectrum Dan Galpin (6th overall) and Katie Rowe(4th woman) were the strongest performers, the outstanding run arguably came from 15 year old national level cyclist Sam Culverwell who was a superb 10th place.
Toby Glass, a finalist at the southern U17 400m Hurdles, was first across the line in the accompanying 2 mile event but Lorcan Gallagher ran superbly to finish 2nd and finish leading U13 in 12:06. There were strong runs for leading U15 girls Eliza Mason(3rd, 12:24) and Amy Dallamore(4th, 12:26).
Full Results here:-
|Date:||October 31, 2015|
Colts Results here:-
|Date:||November 1, 2015|