BY TOM POLLAK
Ellen Weir battled through hurricane force winds in Liverpool on Saturday to make Britain’s team for the European Cross Country Championships in Dublin next month.
The 18-year-old Wimbledon High School pupil, represented Britain in last summer’s European Junior 5000m championship in Tallinn, Estonia, last summer, ran a well-judged race to gain her second international vest.
A downhill start with a 40 miles-per-hour tailwind encouraged some runners to make very fast starts for which they suffered later. Weir wisely held back and moved steadily through the field from about 20th position to finish fifth.
“I’m thrilled to have made the Dublin team and am very excited about it”, she said. The European Championships are being held on Sunday, December 12.
Hercules Wimbledon’s cross country runners will be in action in the second of this season’s Downs Young Athletes Cross Country League matches on Epsom Downs on Sunday morning.
The first race for U11 boys and girls over 2.2km starts at 10.45am followed by the U13’s 3.2km race (11.05am) and the joint U15 and U17 race (11.30am).
Hercules’ girls U11 and U13 teams did particularly well in winning their contests in last month’s opening match of the season. Isabella Harrison led the U13 team to victory in taking the individual honours in 12:43 seconds. She triumphed in a tight finish beating her closest rival by just one second.
With Mae Losson fourth in 13:11, Josie Hughes seventh in 13:21 and Iona Alexander 10th in 13:33, The club took the team honours with 22 point as they beat Herne Hill (28) and Kingston and Polytechnic (62). Isabelle Sparkes, a fourth Hercules runners, was 19th in 14:45.
Poppy Guest led Hercules Wimbledon to team success in the U11 girls 2.2km race, finishing fourth in 9:18. With Enoki Calvert-Ansari fifth in 9:32, Tilly Chrome 10th in 9:58 and Freia Harper-Tee 11th in 10:03, Hercules Wimbledon were again the top team.
Other club finishers were Blanka Domsodi (13th in 10:05); Ariane Freemantle (24th in 11:03) and Alex Aumuller (31st in 11:28).
Max Harrison, who finished third of the 45 runners in the 2.2km boys U11 race in 8:57 led Hercules to third team place. Cyrus Sheikh (seventh in 9:07), Thomas Hennigan (ninth in 9:16) and Jasper Grima (37th in 10:55) completed the team.
Harry Allen was the club’s top finisher in the boys U13 3.2km race, taking sixth place in 12:13. Oliver Mealor (13th in 12:43), William Moret (18th in 13:16) and Thomas Wharton (35th in 15:16) completed the team, which came fifth.
Matt Sharp was the top veteran over-40 finisher in the Sri Chinmoy 10km road race in Battersea Park in 32:30. He finished sixth of 137 runners. Tom Cheetham was top over-55 veteran in 41:21 in 66th place with over-40 veteran Jim Carrington 75th in 41:56.
Main Pic: Hercules Wimbledon’s Ellen Weir (651) and Herne Hill’s Phoebe Anderson (563) who both qualified for the European championships
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