CRAVEN athletes Alice Jones, Sam Smith and Euan Brennan all claimed individual titles at the North Yorkshire Schools’ Cross-Country Championships.

They led a 46 strong Craven contingent who had gained selection

for the event at King James School, Knaresborough following November’s Area Championships at Ripon Grammar School.

The runners try to win titles, medals or selection for the North Yorkshire County teams.

County selection for an Inter-County match at Barnard Castle on February 3, relies on runners finishing in the first 15 (or 12 in the Y7 race).

Anyone finishing in the top six is automatically selected for the English Schools’ Championships to be held at Temple Newsam in Leeds in March with the final two places decided following the Inter-County match.

Unfortunately none of Craven’s Y7 girls qualified for the county team but Skipton Academy’s Elbhils Price, Settle’s Daisy Pilkington and South Craven’s Anna Fryers all finished in the top 20.

Ermysted’s Freddie Marsh came 11th in the Y7 boys race to make the county team, with school-mates Dougie Seggar-Staveley 14th, Aryaan Ghafoor 17th and Settle’s Jimmy Howarth in 20th just missing out.

The junior girls race (u-14s) saw Craven’s first individual champion as Skipton Girls High School’s Alice Jones retained her title.

Alice was in a tight battle but pulled away at the end for a three-second win as she avenged her defeat in the clubs' county championships at Lightwater Valley.

Her school has some real talent at this age group as four of Alice’s school-mates Lilli Carr 5th, Harisah Ghafoor 7th, Emma Peel 11th and Mia Petrucci 15th all qualified to run for North Yorkshire. Settle’s Beth Roberts 16th and South Craven’s Tui Brooks 18th and Scarlett Metcalfe 20th were well in the top half of finishers.

Sam Smith from South Craven won a competitive race in the junior boys (u-14s) age group.

There was also a strong showing from Ermysted’s runners as Alex Thompson 6th, Jath Lee 7th, Ben Rees 8th and Will Atkinson 13th all qualified for the county team.

The inter girls age group (u-16s) saw Emily Jones 4th and Ruby Firth 6th qualify for the county teams in both races as Maddie Rockcliffe-King came 20th.

Six runners from Ermysted’s qualified for the county team in the inter boys age group.

Harvey Lewis claimed a bronze medal, Seb Seggar-Staveley was 4th, Louis Hudson 6th, Joe Carnelley 12th, Arthur Peel 13th and Will Thompson 14th. South Craven’s Jack Muir just missed out in 16th.

The senior girls saw Giggleswick's Eve Hutchinson 9th and Charlotte Morris 12th both qualify for the county team with Craven College’s Vicki Merrick 10th also gaining selection.

Arguably, Craven’s best performance came in the senior (u-18s) boys’ race as there were five Craven lads in the first ten – including three of the first four home.

Euan Brennan from Giggleswick won the race with Ermysted’s Joe Hudson taking bronze.

Craven College’s Matthew Merrick was fourth while the Ermysted’s duo of Tom Barrett 9th, and Sam Jackson 10th, made the county team.

Fellow Ermysted’s athlete Sam Thom was unlucky as he just missed out on selection in 18th.

The performance of the Craven runners helped Harrogate & Craven win eight of the team awards.