Natasha all set for title

HOSTS Stowmarket Striders enjoyed a one-two in the ladies' race at the fifth Fenn Wright Suffolk Winter League meeting, staged over two laps of Haughley Park.

HOSTS Stowmarket Striders enjoyed a one-two in the ladies' race at the fifth Fenn Wright Suffolk Winter League meeting, staged over two laps of Haughley Park.

Tamara Jordan crowned her first appearance in the league this season with a comfortable victory in 37mins 07secs. Jordan was 31st overall in the race. Natasha Belsom was second to virtually guarantee that she will win the individual title this year.

Both Stowmarket ladies were more than three minutes clear of the rest of the field.

The veteran duo of Sandra Bower (Thetford) and Lynn Emmett (Bungay Black Dog) were third and fourth, followed by leading Ipswich Harrier Alice Simpson in fifth spot.


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Maureen McCarthy posted her best result in the league with an excellent sixth position, in the colours of Saint Edmund Pacers, finishing one second ahead of Flying Shufflers' Penny Rooney, following a sprint for the line.

The consistent David Miller recorded his first league win of the season in the men's race. The Woodbridge Shuffler is already assured of winning the overall senior title.

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Miller was 41 seconds ahead of runner-up Elliott Palmer from Ipswich Harriers. Once again, the Ipswich club packed well with their seven scorers all finishing in the top 30.

Waveney Valley AC's Richard Moore took third spot, and there was a good run from Steve Robinson, who led home the Pacers in fourth place.

Robinson had finished second in an East Anglian Cross Country League meeting at Caldecott Hall, Great Yarmouth, just four days earlier.

The Pacers won the team section on the day, finishing 14 points ahead of Ipswich Harriers with the composite Newmarket and Sudbury team in third.

However, the Harriers are on course to retain their title with just one race remaining, at Nowton Park (Bury St Edmunds) on Sunday, February 3.

They are 276 points clear of Stowmarket Striders, who look to have wrapped up second position following another strong showing on home turf.

Roger Aldis was their first runner home in sixth spot. The Striders are 169 points clear of the third-placed Pacers.

More than 230 runners completed the testing two-lap course, which was sticky underfoot with a few short but steep climbs to conquer.

Sam Cheverton, of Waveney Valley AC, won the supporting junior race.

Under-17 athlete Cheverton led home a field of 68 runners in 11mins 58secs. Stowmarket Striders' Asa Burnett was second overall and the leading under-15 competitor, while Diss AC's Cameron McKie was the first under-13 finisher in fifth overall. Megan Burt wrapped up a Waveney Valley AC double by winning the girls' race.

There was also an outstanding run from Elin Grose, of Saint Edmund Pacers, who was second girl and first in the youngest under-13 age group. Lucy Tyler, of Thetford and Brandon, topped the over-15 section.

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