Poppy Craig-McFeely impresses at BUCS Cross Championships

Herne Hill Harriers athletes were in action at the British Universities and Colleges Sports (BUCS) Cross Country Championships on Saturday 3rd February.

The women’s A race saw three excellent performances, led by Poppy Craig-McFeely in 28th place.

In her first 8km race to date, she battled to her final position, which proved to be crucial for her Cambridge University team as she closed in for their scorers to earn bronze medals, just one point better than fourth placed Leeds University on their home course.

Grace Leyland finished 39th for St George’s University. It is a measure of both her progress and her ambition that she was less than satisfied with her race, despite running well.

Liv Stillman has had a long road back to racing at this level following health issues in recent years. Achieving selection for the Cardiff University A team and coming 63rd and second among the team counters would have seemed a tall order at the start of this season.

In the shorter B races, Tom O’Mahoney (St George’s) was 87th in the men’s 8km, while in the women’s 6km Lily Newton (Bath) was 71st, running with only one shoe for most of the race. Only just behind was Kaitlin Hewitt (UCL) in 72nd.

They were followed by Hebe Hunter (Birmingham) 115th and Phoebe Bowen (Exeter) 160th, the next highest placed from the club among 553 finishers in the women’s B race.

Morgan Roberts ran a breakthrough PB of 30:59 at the Chichester 10km around the Goodwood Motor Circuit on Sunday morning to place a superb fifth. John Franklin clocked 32:49 to finish 40th in a high quality field.

Geoff Jerwood