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21 February 2013
Derbyshire has been chosen to play host to this major annual event for 2013, with six age group races set to take place over various distances over the challenging course at Catton Park on Saturday, March 16.
Among the competitors will be a number of Derbyshire athletes who qualified to compete in the national championships after securing top spots at the Derbyshire Schools’ Cross Country Championships earlier this month.
This includes Hugo Milner, from Derby, who took first place in the Junior Boys event at the Derbyshire championships. He will be hoping for another top ten finish at the national championships after taking ninth place last year, a year young.
Also competing for Derbyshire will be Alec Stackhouse, from South Derbyshire, who took fourth place in the Junior Boys event at the Derbyshire championships earlier this month, Niamh Emerson from Amber Valley who took second place in the Junior Girls event, and Emma Erskine from Derbyshire Dales who took first place in the Senior Girls event.
The English Schools Athletics Association National Cross Country Championships is being organised by the Derbyshire Schools’ Sports Association (DSSA) Athletics Section, together with the English Schools' Athletic Association, with around 200 volunteers expected to be involved in the running of the day.
Liz Milne, Chair of DSSA Athletics, said: “We are very proud that Derbyshire has been chosen to host this prestigious event, and look forward to welcoming teams from across the country for a fantastic day of competition.
“The course at Catton Park will be a good test for the athletes and is very spectator friendly, with most of the course visible from the start and finish areas, so we also look forward to welcoming a good number of spectators to the event which I’m sure will make for a great atmosphere on the day.”
Ken Bray, Secretary of the English Schools' Athletic Association, said: “I’m delighted that this year’s English Schools Athletics Association National Cross Country Championships will be held in Derbyshire.
“We have been working with volunteers from DSSA Athletics for several months and it is clear to see that there is a huge passion for sport in the county. Plans are in place for what I am sure will be another great event which young people from across the country will be proud to take part in.”
Race distances will range from 3,400m for the Junior Girls race, to 6,480m for the Senior Boys race. There will also be events for Junior Boys, Inter Girls, Inter Boys and Senior Girls.
Pictured above, front from left, is athletes Alec Stackhouse, Hugo Milner, Emma Erskine and Niamh Emerson. Back from left is Cllr John Lemmon, Chairman of Housing and Community Services, South Derbyshire District Council; Ken Bray, Secretary of the English Schools’ Athletic Association; Lisa Palmer, DSSA Athletics Vice Chair and Derbyshire Team Manager; Stuart Batchelor, Head of Community and Planning, South Derbyshire District Council; Barry Parker, DSSA Committee Member; Lynne Pope, DSSA Athletics Secretary.
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