The Third running of the Witton Park Trail relay was held Sunday 2nd Feb, 63 teams from the local area turned out to contest the short but fast mixed-terrain event; Clayton Harriers had an impressive 40 runners present in the form of 10 teams: 5 men’s, 2 ladies/mixed and 3 Junior teams.
With most of the field having carried out a recce of the course to judge how muddy it was (Very muddy!) the leg 1 runners lined up ready for the 11am start with Seniors, vets and juniors all kicking off at the same time.
Fell climbing ace Spencer Riley gave the men’s A team a healthy start gaining 3rd place off the first leg, the position was maintained for the remaining three legs with strong runs from team-mates Matt Perry, Jonny McKenna and Chris Holdsworth to take 3rd place overall.
Captain Tom Brewster also got the men’s B team off to a good start coming home in 6th off the first leg, again the position was maintained by very consistent runs by Paul Shackleton, Nick Gaskell and Dave Motley allowing the team to snatch 6th place in the final standings.
The Senior men’s C team were lead off the line by Leon Passco, he handed over to the ever reliable Richard Briscoe who’s stirling effort was followed up by strong runs from Ryan Wilkinson and Dave Bagot to achieve 13st spot.
Not to be outdone by their senior counterparts the Clayton Juniors had a fantastic run out with the boys A team claiming 15th overall, Jordan McDonald coming in a mere 5 seconds and one place behind senior man Tom Brewster on leg 1 to give his team a boost in the standings, his performance was echoed with excellent runs from George Pier, Tom Bradley and Kenan Eti.
The Clayton men’s vets’ team were next in the standings, represented by Sean Clare, John Wilcock, “Coach” John Roche and Dom Car achieving an excellent 21st place.
Not far behind the Vets came the 4th senior team, securing 23rd place and consisting of Adam Shaw, Lee Passco, Matt Law and new-boy Tim Pigott.
Clayton Junior boys “B” team were once again hot on the heels of the senior men, scoring 28th place were young guns Curtis Holt, Alexander Townrow, Tom passco and Ryan Clarke.
The Clayton mixed team were next to complete the relay, Dave Hogan, Katy Thompson, Irene Roche and Paul Wale all enjoying excellent performances to net 44th place.
Next in the standings were the Clayton all-Ladies team of Vice-captain Rebecca Rawcliffe, Jean Knightly, Tanya Ashworth and Georgina Slater, recording an impressive 56th place and finishing 4th out of 6 all-women teams.
Last but by no means least to get a mention are the Clayton Junior Girls, missing a runner on their final leg did nothing to deter Clayton’s rising stars as Eleanor Root, Beth Quinn and Alice Pier all posted times to challenge their senior peers and finish 61st overall.
A massive thanks from the team captains to all runners who represented, as a club we had a fantastic day and it was very encouraging to see so many keen runners turning out so enthusiastically to run for their club – your captains are very proud and we hope to improve on yesterdays performances in the Summer relay!