Buxton juniors impress at ESAA National Cross County Championships

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This weekend saw the English Schools Athletics Association National Cross Country Championship - the most eagerly anticipated event of the winter for young athletes.

Organised entirely by volunteer teachers, the ESAA bring together the best athletes in each of the 46 Counties in England to compete for the honour of being the best in the Country.

Just to qualify to represent their county in this National competition is an outstanding achievement and with extreme weather conditions the course was a tough, chilly, mudfest that some runner struggled to complete. All the Buxton runners gave 100 per cent and have done their counties, schools and club proud.

Running for Staffordshire in the Junior girls race was Buxton’s Lucy Bednall. She ran a great race to finish 211th out of 342 runners.

In the Junior boys race Will Longden had an outstanding run to come in 82nd overall running for Derbyshire, and Harry Bond, qualified to represent Staffordshire came in 340th.

In the Intermediate girls Ellie Wilson, running for Derbyshire had a finished comfortably in 239th out of 339.

The Buxton AC duo of Sam Soles and Ed Diamond both represented Derbyshire in the Intermediate boys finishing 220th and 314th out of 339 athletes.

Chapel School teacher and Buxton AC team manager Daniel Latham, who supported the juniors at the event said: “Tough conditions and competition makes our junior’s efforts all the more impressive. Well done all.”

Closer to home Buxton’s junior parkrunners took on the beast from the east with fantastic results.

At Bakewell Parkrun Buxton due of Louis White and Matthew Rolfe both ran personal bests, with Louis coming 17th overall and first in his age category of 11-14 years.

Matthew came 51st overall and third in his category of U10. Amy Whelan took on the super tough Lyme Park parkrun and achieved an impressive 19th overall, first junior girl 11-14 yrs and fourth female overall.

Photo: Buxton AC’s Will Longden, Sam Soles and Ed Diamond representing Derbyshire