MATTHEW Hulse was running hot in the cold at the Cheshire Cross Country Championships.
The Halton & Frodsham Harrier defied the winter chill and frosty conditions to win the under 13 boys race.
It was a terrific performance and the undoubted highlight for the club at Knight’s Grange in Winsford.
Matthew led from the gun to cross in 10 minutes 21 seconds – 25 seconds clear of his nearest rival.
Of the other H&FH runners, Robbie Conduit was 35th (13:12), Charlie Fletcher 36th (13:15), Joe Woolf 40th (13:48) and David Bergstrand 42nd (14:03).
The Harriers had high hopes for Jess Wright in the U11s girls race but the potential winner was forced to withdraw due to asthma. Even so, the Harriers picked up prizes for second and fifth-placed teams in this section.
Georgia Massey, in fourth, was their first athlete home in 7:52 with Charlotte Davies (eighth) and Jenny Pyatt (11th), both timed at 8:21, the counting top three A-stringers in runners-up spot.
Other finishers were Megan McEverley (16th, 9:00), Annabel Kitchen (19th, 9:03), Emily Ross (21st, 9:06), Sally Hulse (23rd, 9:13) and Molley Stradling (28th, 10:03).
Megan, Annabel and Emily comprised the Harriers B team which took fifth.
Jess Parsons was the Harriers’ front runner in the 2,600m U13 girls event. She finished third in 11:35, taking the bronze medal for her efforts. Sophia Ellison ran home for seventh spot in 12:09 while Emma Pyatt’s ninth place (12:18) secured silver in the team standings.
Kate Merrill was 13th (12:42), Katy Morgan 15th (12:55) and Emma Scott 19th (13:42) – the trio clinching sixth place for the B team.
The U11 boys, also running 2,300m, were higher in the frame for the team awards, filling second position with Will Parsons leading them home in fifth place (7:20).
Harry Stubbs was eighth (7:33) with Tom Merrill completing the point-scoring in 19th (8:23).
Will Fletcher was 27th (8:37), Alister Grant 28th (8:38), Luke Bratt 31st (9:05) and Johnathon Jones 35th (10:14).
In the U15 boys race, Richard McGeachie was the highest placed Harrier, covering the 4,500m in 18:05 for a creditable 22nd. James Crosby (23:45) also produced a determined display for 40th. Mark Coman ran well in the 5,100m U17 men’s race, clocking 20:47 for ninth.
Next for the Harriers is the last match in the North West Sportshall League at Kingsway Leisure Centre, Widnes, this Sunday (noon start).