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by Geoff Hewitson The second NEMAA Track & Field League meeting of the 2024 season took place last Monday evening, once more in near perfect weather conditions. The men's team had a reasonable turnout of 9 competitors, including a NEMAA debut for Mark Standbridge and a welcome return to competition for Danny Oakley. A combination of unavailabilities and missing the entry deadline meant that the ladies only had 4 competitors. On a positive note, however, it was good to have Sharon B competing again, and the ladies still had a team (minimum 3 competitors required) so were able to score points in the league. The men’s team accumulated a very health 120 points on the night (an improvement on the 92 we scored at the previous meeting), an average of 13.3 points each. We remain in 4th place in the current league standings, but despite their big turnout we still managed to outscore Jarrow and Hebburn. Team Grand Prix for Men: Top points scorers for the men’s team were Joe Hall (18), Geoff H (17), Ken C (15) and Peter Coser (15). Remember, the maximum is 18 points if you are lucky enough to finish first in your age category in all 3 events. Remarkably, Joe

by Brad Wight This was our fourth visit to the NYMAC Relays and our third consecutive victory in the Mixed category. Anthony Sayers made his Crook relay debut in fine form, blitzing round the one mile course in 5:01. He handed the baton to Kate Storey who ran the seventh fastest female leg of the day in 5:38 then Alex Mitton delivered with a 5:03 leg. Sam Etherington brought the team home with a 5:05 mile to finish 70 seconds ahead of the runners up Richmond and Zetland Harriers. Great stuff, £60 prize money has been sent over the club account for you to share! The Men's Veteran category works on a combined age of the team rather than individual ages. The total must add up to 200 or more. With Peter Clough approaching V60 status this meant we could sneak a young’un in to the team. Cloughy, Al Hart, Peter Coser and the ‘youth’ Chris Henderson, put in a great performance to finish 3rd overall, only five seconds behind Leeds City AC but a full minute behind the winners from Richmond and Zetland Harriers. We had four other teams competing (full Crook results below) and I was personally very proud to see

by Danny Oakley 17 Crook runners lined up on the start line of the Blaydon race last night, myself somewhat apprehensive knowing this was about to be the longest I’d ran since October due to an ongoing niggly injury in my foot. We had relatively good conditions, despite a pretty heavy shower before the race started. The route has changed quite a bit in the past few years with the organisers putting it down to “logistical issues”, and therefore this year’s iteration was to be 5.9 miles. Relatively flat so I’d been told, with a couple of cheeky hills. Away we went after a rendition of the Blaydon races, down past Sandhill and the Copthorne onto the road by the Tyne. Busy but manageable with the road being wide enough. Then came the long steady climb up to Scotswood road. A nice long open road which was mainly flat or downhill. The water station was chaotic to say the least, being provided with what could only be described as plastic pint glasses full of water, impossible to drink from whilst running. Over the Derwenthaugh Bridge, with a short run towards the Metro Centre and then a hairpin onto the Blaydon road. Nearly there now,

by Clare and Harry Rose Harry and I signed up for the Manchester Half Marathon way back in January when he needed a focus. To say training was hit and miss was an understatement, with me being admitted to hospital and Harry not really having any idea how to train for 13.1 miles. Then, Kate beat him at Middridge and welcome competitive Harry. Race day was perfect conditions; we were up, prepared and ready. Harry set off first with a 20 minute head start on my wave. My husband said his head was up, he was focused on the 1 hour 30 pacer and whoosh - he was off. Being an out and back course, I had worked out that if I timed my run right, I would see Harry twice. I was right - I saw him at his 6 mile and my 3 mile. He was full of smiles and an awful lot of energy. My run continued with surprising ease. We ran past both the Etihad and Old Trafford, other notable landmarks and then came the home stretch. I had hoped to have spotted Harry at my 9 mile point with him at about 12.5 but he was nowhere to be seen. I must