Scoring error robs Mansfield Harriers of league title

Mansfield Harriers' successful U11 girls' trio, from left, Isabel Westwood, Freya Longmead and Amelia Arbon.
Mansfield Harriers' successful U11 girls' trio, from left, Isabel Westwood, Freya Longmead and Amelia Arbon.

Unlucky Mansfield Harriers were robbed of the Nottinghamshire Mini Cross-Country League title by a scoring error, only discovered long after the races had finished.

Harriers’ talented, young squad performed magnificently in the final fixture of the league at Rushcliffe Country Park, and were even named the winners and presented with the trophy.

But the blunder was unearthed later in the day, meaning that they had actually been pipped to overall first place by a powerful Notts AC team.

Although disappointed, Harriers could look back on an amazing campaign, underlining the massive imnprovement they have made since three years ago when, at the same fixture, they took only four athletes and finished last by a very long way.

The highlight of the series for them was the performance of the U11 girls, particularly the outstanding Isabel Westwood, who won all five races to lead the team to a clear overall victory.

She won the race at Rushcliffe by seven seconds, with teammate Amelia Arbon enjoying her best run to date, placing fifth, and Freya Longmead just behind in sixth after a fall in the mud. Longmead’s consistency throughout the season earned her second spot overall behind Westwood.

Harriers’ U11 boys finished a terrific second on the day and fourth overall. The improving Eddie Holden was an imnpresive fourth, while Isaac Hibbert was ninth, Adam Hursthouse 13th, Daniel Adams 17th and Joel Brereton 30th.

The final round of the Booths Decorators Cross-Country League also took place last week, with Dylan George confirming the phenomenal progress he has made to storm round the muddy 5.1-mile course at Chesterfield and place third. Phil Shaw was 24th, Craig Linacre 88th and Graeme Baguley 128th.