National Cross Country at Taupo bring medals for Wellington athletes
On Day 1, Saturday in the individual Championship races, Wellington athletes claimed nine medals, with successes led by Masters athletes on the testing but form Spa Thermal Park course.
Winning titles were Masters athletes Mel Aitken [Scottish] in the 45-49 Women, Heather Walker [Scottish] in 50-54 division, and Brian Garmonsway [Trentham United] claiming the 40-44 Men’s grade and John Skinnon 75-79 Men’s grade gold. Silver medals were achieved by Masters grade Vicky Humphries [WHAC] in the 55-59 division and clubmate Paul Hewitson in Men’s 55-59 , while bronze medals went to the well performed Hannah Miller [Scottish] running a brave race behind Lisa Cross [AKL] the 2018 Champion and last years titleholder Kerry White [WBP]. Stephen Day [Scottish] in 45-49 division and Peter Stevens [Scottish] of the 55-59 grade to bronze.
Tim Robertson [Hutt Valley Harriers] was an unexpected by many bronze medallist in the Senior Mens 10km one place ahead of Toby Gaulter [Olympic] a promising junior athlete of the past now an international Orienteering star, who this year has improved his 1500m, 3000m and 5000m track best times in Europe before claiming his biggest title yet with victory in the World Games Orienteering sprint title as part of the major festival in Birmingham, Alabama in mid July.
On day 2 , the inaugural Mixed Cross Country Relays major title was claimed by the Wellington Harrier Athletic Club [WHAC] with an excellent team performance finished off with Wellington Cross Country Champions Sarah Drought and Nathan Tse . They combined with leg 1 and 2 runner Callum Stewart and Esther George to post a comfortable win to claim the fist edition of the event. Scottish Masters won the Masters 35+ division.