Relay squad just outside the medals
Tim AshAlthough they finished just one place outside the medals it was still a great day for the City of Norwich AC senior men's team in the Saucony Southern Counties 12 Stage Road Relay held in Milton Keynes.Tim Ash
Although they finished just one place outside the medals it was still a great day for the City of Norwich AC senior men's team in the Saucony Southern Counties 12 Stage Road Relay held in Milton Keynes.
The Open University Campus and surrounds provided a fast flat course of alternate laps of 8km and 5.5km.
Lead-off man Luke Allen displayed much improved form when recording 25min 24secs for his long-leg stint to hand over well up the field in 15th position. An impressive 17min 17secs over the first short-leg run was posted by veteran Guy Amos, who brought the team up to sixth place when handing over to fellow veteran Wayne Lincoln, who gained a further place when recording 25min 58sec over his long-leg 8km run.
Long serving club member Jonny Quint gained further ground over the next short-leg run, bringing the team into fourth place when posting a time of 18min 01sec.
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Nick Earl, carrying a niggling injury, stoically stuck to the task to record 26min 25secs for his 8km run but lost a couple of positions. Steve Cannell (18min 29secs) brought the team back up to fifth place over his short leg before handing over to Mitch Goose. Recording the third fastest long leg time of the day - 24min 08secs - Goose massively closed the gap on the leaders but still handed over to Wayne Utting in fifth position.
Utting's short-leg time of 18min 13sec retained the status quo and it was Ashley Harrell (24min 35secs) over his long-leg effort who was able to pick up a place to hand over to rookie James Jackson in fourth position. He managed a creditable 17min 53 for his short leg effort that maintained the club's high position.
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Track athlete Carl Goose displayed his new found stamina base when producing a pleasing time of 25min 13secs over the final long-leg stretch that consolidated the club's high position.
It was left to the City club's only import, Irish student Tommy Carroll, to bring the team home. His short-leg time of 16min 52sec was one of the fasted of the day and ensured that the City club completed the relay in their best ever finishing position of fourth.
It was a tremendous team effort and they can now look forward to taking their place in the National Final that will be held in April at Sutton Coldfield. The team will be hope to reproduce their best form and will be looking for a top ten finish.
Meanwhile Mitch Goose and Ashley Harrell are adding to their list of international appearances. Goose will travel out to Canada to compete for the British Universities in the World Student Cross Country Championships that take place on the April 11.
A little near to home, Harrell has been selected to compete for England's senior team in the Home International cross country fixture being staged in Berry Hill Park, Mansfield on Saturday.