THREE West Cheshire AC distance runners have prize-winning performances in their sights.

Alec Beaney, Louis Humphreys and Alan Littler are all poised to secure awards after the penultimate round of the Manchester Area Cross Country League series.

Beaney finished third in the under 20 age group at Stockport’s Woodbank Park in the latest round of the series, clocking 36 minutes 42 seconds for 38th position overall in the men’s race.

He is currently first overall in the U20 age group standings ahead of the final round scheduled to be held at Wythenshawe Park in Manchester on Saturday, February 7.

Humphreys was fourth in the U20 race at Stockport with a time of 37:59, and 57th overall in the men’s race, and he is now second overall after four rounds.

Littler completed the West Cheshire U20 contingent at Stockport, finishing ninth and 160th overall in a time of 46:02.

The trio have earned West Cheshire a team score in three of the four rounds to date and are lining up top spot in the team event at Wythenshawe.

They were joined in the men’s race at Stockport by Russell Kirk, who was 72nd in 38:48, and Steve Russell-Ingram, who clocked 52:26 for 189th position.

Eleanor Robinson finished 42nd in the ladies race and 25th veteran lady in 30:20 at Stockport, ahead of Lisa Davies who was 64th overall and 39th in the veteran race with 32:19.

Alex Kirk completed the U13 boys race in 14:18 for 18th position, and Michael Ellis grabbed 21st spot in 14:29.

Dave Alexander was West Cheshire’s first finisher at the fourth round of the Borders Road Running League series held at Caernarfon.

He completed the 10km course hosted by Eryri Harriers in 34 minutes 50 seconds to secure ninth position, behind eventual winner Stephen Mitchell (Helsby) in 32:30 seconds.

Dave Tiernan completed the route in 37:37 for 32nd place, ahead of West Cheshire colleagues Gary Withers (54th in 39:17), Chris Rhodes (80th in 41:18), Paul Price (84th in 41:32), Richard Batterham (116th in 43:24), Dave Hough (140th in 45:19), Brian Hastings (144th in 45:48), Brian Beattie (153rd in 48:33), and Charles Thackray (173rd in 54:20).

Fixtures this weekend include the Cheshire County AA Cross Country Championships at Knights Grange Sports Complex, Winsford, on Saturday (11.30am start), and the England Athletics U20 and Senior Indoor Combined Events Championships at Sheffield on Saturday and Sunday.

Chris Bennion was just pipped to the post by Mike Burns in Ellesmere Port Running Club’s four-mile Christmas Handicap.

Bennion got away before Burns under the handicapping system and led the entire race until the very end.

Winner Burns finished in 34 minutes 35 seconds and Bennion in 34:39.

Jason Bennett, the last runner sent off, reeled in the front two early on but spent his energy by mile two and had to settle for third (34:53).

Fourth was Dave Nalder (35:06) followed by Matt Whitfield (35:13), Alison McDonald (35.14), Alison Hughes (35:24), Jon Cole (36:22) and Brian Griffiths (36:44).

In race four of the Borders League at Eryri in Caernarfon, EPRC fielded a full team despite injury and illness restricting the number of available runners.

The 10km race saw Ian Cooper finish first for EPRC, coming 23rd overall in 37 minutes dead.

Paul Robertson was next home in 59th, running 39:20 and Nicky Bird was third over the line in 71st (40:39).

Chasing them were Dave Nalder (72nd, 40:40), Paul Ashley (88th, 41:21), John Cole (92nd, 41:38), Chris Marshall (117th, 42:57) Matthew Whitfield (125th, 43:20) Brian Griffiths (138th, 43:52) John Jennings (175th, 46:53), Danny Legg (179th, 47:18) and Alison Hughes (188th, 49:01).

Anyone wishing to join EPRC, whether beginner or competent runner, can attend training at Whitby Sports and Social Club on Tuesdays and Fridays at 6.45pm to begin running at 7pm. All abilities are welcome.