CRAVEN had another excellent day at the First round of the English Schools’ Cross-Country Cup, held at Giggleswick.

These races are team based and it is the team that progresses to the next round if they finish in the topthree3 schools for each race. Craven had the individual winner in all four of the races as Ermysted’s George Marsh, South Craven’s Izzy Patefield, Giggleswick’s Jack Sanderson and Skipton Girls’ Izzy Wright all showed their competitors a clean pair of heels.

Ermysted’s won both boys team events, whilst South Craven won the Intermediate Girls age group.

Giggleswick once more proved a testing course as each race involved undulating pastureland with several sharp climbs. Ermysted’s Juniors (Year 7/8) were victors in the first boys’ race as George Marsh led their challenge. Marsh led from gun to tape for an impressive individual victory.

He was backed up in tremendous style by the other members of his team as Will Oakden and Will Pease had their own battle for the other podium places. They went round in tandom with Oakden just pipping Pease in the run in to the line. They needed a 4th scorer for the team competition and they had two Y7s battling for top ten places, with Seth Box finishing 8th and Harry Roberts 10th. The team total of just 14 points for the finishing positions of the first 4 home was extraordinarily low and bodes well for their future success in the competition, potentially even challenging on the national stage, which this year will be at Leeds Grammar School in December. South Craven School’s Junior boys team qualified in third place with Charlie Albone 6th and Jacob O’sullivan 7th leading their challenge.

The Junior Girls race was won by South Craven’s Izzy Patefield just ahead of school-mate Holly Fitch who was runner-up. Unfortunately they will not get to run at Middlesbrough as the team were 5th overall. Skipton Girls did qualify as Rosie Earl 7th, Rita Box 8th, Macy Plunkett 11th and Emily Lloyd 15th gave them second team. Giggleswick have also qualified in third with Lucy Cowan 6th, Camilla Hart 9th, Lydia Benson 10th and Lilly Bowness 20th as their scorers.

Jack Sanderson from Giggleswick, led the way in the Intermediate Boys race, but unfortunately his team only finished fifth so that ends Jack’s participation in this year’s event. Ermysted’s again won the boys team event as they had the next 2 runners home as Ewen Wilkinson 2nd and Tom Hooper 3rd took the other medal positions. Their team was completed by Daniel Ridehalgh 9th and Lucas Smith 13th, having his best run of the year and beating Rowan Box 17th to be their final scorer. Their total of 27 points was first of the 5 schools and meant qualification. South Craven had two runners in the top ten as Zac Jardine was 4th and Otis Brooks 10th but their team just missed out on qualification.

The Intermediate Girls had Skipton Girls’ Izzy Wright leading the way and her team qualified as runner-up team as Emily Anderson 8th, Lilly Nixon 11th and Anna Petrucci 12th were all well placed. They were pipped for the team award by South Craven who had individual runner-up Layla Kirkley with Rebecca Pierce 4th, Alice O’Sullivan 6th and Betsy Willis 13th completing their team.

This year for only the second time their is also have a senior age group. Because there were not enough teams to justify a separate race for the seniors, they ran with the inters. This meant a good workout for the Ermysted’s team as Lachlan Wills and Sam Bentham had to run hard to keep in touch with the Inter’s winner Sanderson and the rest of the team ran well to be well to the front of the Inters field. Again the team looks competitive and will hopefully put in a strong challenge in the

NE of England round at Stewart Park, Middlesbrough on Saturday November 12.