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Local runners impress as Newbury Athletic Club host prestigious BBO Championship





Newbury Athletic Club hosted the prestigious Berks, Bucks & Oxon Championship – an event which dates all the way back to 1911 – at Newbury Showground last Sunday, with the club’s athletes celebrating an impressive haul of medals.

Jess Franklin led the Newbury challenge in the day’s first race, battling it out at the front as she finished third overall and ranked as second veteran.

Laura Buchanan maintained her excellent recent form, finishing seventh, and together with Franklin and Rachel Allen secured Newbury AC a team silver medal.

Jess Franklin on her way to picking up two individual and two team medals. Picture by Chris Culley
Jess Franklin on her way to picking up two individual and two team medals. Picture by Chris Culley

Franklin, Allen and Mireille Cook went one better to win the veterans team gold medal, while Sophie Bhatt, who crossed the line in 14th, picked up a bronze medal as the third fastest under-20 athlete.

There was a particularly strong field in the men’s race, with Abingdon AC’s GB triathlete Jack Shayler opening up a gap on the last lap to win the individual gold and help his team to defend their title.

Newbury’s Cameron Craik narrowly missed out on a medal following a thrilling battle, finishing fourth, while Matt Green came home an impressive eighth.

Craik and Green combined with Bradley Thomas (14th), Bernie Gerrard (19th), Mike Wheeler (20th) and Ben Bliss (22nd) to bring home an extremely creditable team bronze medal.

Gerrard and Wheeler were joined by Mike Robbins to win the veteran team gold medal, pipping Reading AC by a single point.

Meanwhile, Josh Glendenning (4th), Charlie Adams (5th), Matt Carter (6th), Jack Collings (7th) and Isaac Mitcham (10th) managed a superb team triumph in the under-17 men’s race.

Matt Carter, Charlie Adams and Jacob Glendenning win the Desborough Challenge Cup
Matt Carter, Charlie Adams and Jacob Glendenning win the Desborough Challenge Cup

The under-17 women almost matched the men as Isabel Moore, who ran superbly to finish fourth, Katya Burgess (6th) and Georgia Knight (11th) secured silver, just behind Bracknell AC.

Josh Norton continued his fine form with a third placed finish. Picture by Chris Culley
Josh Norton continued his fine form with a third placed finish. Picture by Chris Culley

Josh Norton once again starred in the under-15 boys race, finishing third, while there were also some stellar runs from Rupert Knight (7th) and Jude Bennet (11th) in the under-13 boys race and Lily-Mae Gerrard in the under-15 girls race.



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