Junior Intercounties Devon team success

Report from David Lewis who supported our Devon juniors at Shropshire and did a fine job as Team Manager . All photos with permission.

Devon team in Shropshire

On Saturday 24th June a pioneering group of Devon and Cornwall juniors ran at the Inter-Counties Fell Running Championships in the picturesque Shropshire Hills at Church Stretton. With the team set up thanks to Hayley Ratcliff and Richard Best, it was great to see our young runners putting themselves up against some of the strongest fell runners in the country. With sixteen counties/regions represented and fell running clubs such as Ambleside and Rosendale, there was a real cultural mix of the fell running community present.

Early impact in first races

First off for Devon was Carys Woodhead in the U13 event. In her Bideford AAC light blue vest, she was the fifth girl to finish (15:51) having held second place for much of the 3km race, only overtaken on the final descents. There is a real skill to running down steep hills fast and staying upright!

In the U15 race, Erme Valley Harriers Luke Hayes came a tremendous 4th place in the boys (22:07), with Aiden Spinney of Okehampton AC finishing 32nd (26:58). In the girls event, which ran simultaneously, Elsie Goodspeed from the City of Plymouth AC came 10th (26:20) and Keira Spinney finished 37th (34:53).  All had good runs over the steep and undulating 5km course.

U17 Team Placing

The U17 race, over a tough 6.8km distance, saw Okehampton’s  Luke Stannus of Exeter Harriers finish in 7th place (33:05) looking really at home amongst experienced competition. Torbay’s duo of Harry Kendall and Gwilym Lewis, came 19th (38:58) and 25th (44:21) respectively, giving the U17 boys team a creditable fourth place amongst the counties. In the girls event, over the same distance, Chloe Clarke  from Cornwall AC came 6th (40:29) and Sophie Gilvear came 21st (49:38). Conditions were very hot by this point and with the demanding terrain, four of the starting runners did not finish indicating the degree of challenge for all involved.

Hot hot hot for U19’s

The final race of the day was the U19 over a gruelling 10km distance. Matthew Gilvear of Erme Valley Harriers really showcased Devon talent with an amazing 2nd place (43:14), whilst Tavistock AC’s Charlotte Walker finished in a strong 6th place (55:36) in the Ladies Race.  

Teamwork and experience

Everyone enjoyed the experience, which felt really friendly and supportive in a stunning part of the country.  All runners left Church Stretton keen to have more experiences like this, representing  their county with flying colours, and loving the stunning countryside that they ran through on the day.

The Devon team were placed as follows.

U15F       8th                U15M           7th

U17F       7th                U17M           4th

U19F       7th                U19M           6th 

Sw Fellrunners says

A superb result from all the runners and supporters , a huge journey but am sure ambition has been fuelled and another reminder that Fell running, is alive and well in the SW. Travel support is essential if you want to compete ‘up North’ but hopefully for the families involved a worthwhile trip. Thanks again to Hayley, David and all the parents.

Just a reminder ,that of course, the Dartmoor fell series provides regular junior races through to end of September. We may even be organising some ‘downhill running sesions!

See you on the hills


1 thought on “Junior Intercounties Devon team success

  1. Toby Kendall

    Well done to all who ran and a special thank you to David for marshalling the juniors and the great report

Comments are closed.