Richardson and Holloway both medal at biggest cross country meet of the year (From Thurrock Gazette)
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Teenagers show their distance skills
12:00pm Thursday 14th March 2013 in Sport
ATHLETICS: THURROCK teenagers Tom Richardson and Gemma Holloway both came away from the biggest cross-country meeting of the year with medals.
Richardson, 18, from Stanford-le-Hope, had an inspired race in the under-20 men’s race at the UK Intercounties Cross-Country Championships to help his Essex team to a silver medal, while Holloway, 15, from Grays, also picked up a team silver medal and finished 14th in the under-17 women’s race.
The Intercounties are the biggest championships of the winter season, bringing together the best cross-country runners from across the UK, and was screened live on Sky Sports once again.
The course at Cofton Park, in Birmingham, was muddier and heavier than usual and those conditions seemed to suit Richardson who, after a controlled start, began to pick his way through the field in the under-20 men’s 8km race.
The Basildon AC athlete got himself inside the top 20 by the final kilometre and finished in 16th place.
He was the second Essex athlete to finish behind Chris Youell (10th) and together with Hoseah Gikungu (44th) and Stephen Woodford (55th) the Essex team finished as the second best team in the standings and picked up silver.
In the under-17 women’s race, William Edwards pupil Holloway and her Essex team-mates were at the forefront of the race in the early stages. Such was the Essex team’s dominance it looked almost certain they would win a medal and so it proved.
Unfortunately, Thurrock Harrier Holloway and team-mates Jess Burgess, Alice Perkins and Sophie Riches were pipped to the gold medal by Surrey by just two points. In the senior women’s race, Thurrock Harriers’ second-claim athlete Jo Wilkinson was the first Essex athlete home in 28th place.
Richardson and Holloway will both be on county duty again this weekend when they represent Essex Schools at the English Schools Championships in Derby. Also representing Essex will be Thurrock Harriers’ Jody Meredith.
For more athletics see Friday's THURROCK GAZETTE