RUNNING: THE race is on to bring competitive cross-country running to Crewe for the first time in 20 years.
The South Cheshire Harriers are behind a plan to bring league racing for seniors back to the area after an absence of around two decades.
A trial run at the Joey The Swan fields, off Crewe Road, Wistaston, organised by the Harriers, was a success on Saturday. It brought praise from officials of the North Staffordshire Cross Country League, who are known to be looking for a venue in the area.
Harriers spokesman Mike Cutler is hopeful.
He said: 'I won't pretend not to be a little disappointed at the turnout on Saturday, but the quality of the racing was absolutely excellent.
'We hope it can become a Cheshire League or North Staffs League fixture next year. People were impressed with the course, which was a mixture of fields and woodland.
'We last had competitive senior racing here in the mid-80s. It would automatically bring more competitors next year and it would be good for sport in the Crewe area.'
The women's open race, sponsored by Milcon Construction, was won by Congleton Harrier Amanda Bell in 34:05. Shelagh Swinnerton (6th) was the first Harrier home in 38:25. Frances Mudway of West Cheshire AC (4th) won the women's veteran prize in 36:01.
Former junior champion and Macclesfield AC runner Damian Nicholls, who competed unattached, won the men's event in 32:31, coming out on top in a frantic battle for the line with Dave Mansbridge of Telford AC.
Harrier Pete Mallison finished third in 34:26, and the men's veteran prize was won by Harrier Mike Hatton (6th) in 36:05.
Other Harriers were John Swinnerton (43:38) and Martin Stirna (47:53). nEight Harriers turned out in freezing conditions for the Village Bakery Half Marathon at Wrexham on Sunday.
Steve Dawson (86th) was first over the line in 1:28:23, while Rebecca Barlow (1:49:13) arrived home in 9th in the ladies U35 age group.
Other club results included: Paul Brownbill (1:33:55); Dave McGrath (1:34:11); Mike Cutler (1:35:50); Martin Stirna (1:49:13); Shelagh Swinnerton (2:01:00); and Joy Cartlidge (2:15:24).