Joe strikes gold at season opener

Hastings Athletic Club's senior men's team at Goodwood. Picture courtesy Terry Skelton

Hastings Athletic Club's senior men's team at Goodwood. Picture courtesy Terry Skelton

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Hastings Athletic Club performed well at the first event of the Sussex Cross-Country League season.

The Ark William Parker Academy-based club achieved high finishes in various events at a windswept Goodwood on Saturday, including a victory.

That win came in the under-17 boys’ event where Joe Body outsprinted the runner-up over the final 200m and just held on to cross the line first.

Shannon Hopkins-Parry ran really well to come second in the under-13 girls’ race, overhauling third-placed clubmate Erica Body over the closing 400m. Jonas Judah was the pick of the under-13 boys in sixth place.

Hastings AC duo Harmony Cooper and Maya Ramnarine featured in a fantastic four-way battle for victory in the under-15 girls’ event. Cooper opened up a bit of a gap on the final lap, but was caught and then outsprinted by winner Olivia Whiteman (Chichester) and had to settle for second, with Ramnarine third.

George Pool, who had been suffering with a sickness bug, led for about half-a-lap in the under-15 boys’ race before dropping back to finish sixth.

Ellen Crombie finished second in the under-17 girls’ standings, despite suffering from a cold all week, while Riz Maslen ran very well in the senior ladies’ event.

Hastings AC fielded its biggest turnout of senior men for a long time and Gary Foster finished 14th after losing several places as a result of tripping on the firm ground while heading downhill and falling head first into the bushes.

Stuart Piper made the top 20, the talented Kieran Brooker was in the top 25 and Blake Mitchell the top 35.

* HASTINGS Athletic Club talent James Mountford knocked a minute off his personal best at the Amsterdam Marathon, crossing the line in 2:33.47.

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