Making the running!

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GIFFNOCK NORTH AAC’s distance squad shot to glory at Battery Park, Gourock, in the National Junior Road Race Championships last Sunday.

In perfect, cool conditions the southside youngsters dished up no less than three individual champions, two title-winning teams, two silver medal winning squads and a further bronze team gong for good measure.

First up were the Under 13 girls and Heather Barnes stormed to victory over 2.5k in eight minutes 40 seconds, four ticks ahead of Inverclyde’s Nuala McCheyne, to lead team-mates Annabel Ballantyne and Kate Richardson to the national crown.

With a typically brave front-run effort, Hamish Armitt added the Scottish road title to his recent cross country gold, and with able backing from Jack Bell and Ethan Carolan claimed team silver behind Kilbarchan.

Under 15 flyer Erin Wallace delivered individual gold number three, patiently waiting for most of her 4.2k race behind rivals from Edinburgh and Pitreavie before pouncing with 400 metres to go. Nikki Miller and Danielle Kelly completed a fine title-winning performance.

Silver team medals went to Under 17 Girls Sarah Eunson, Holly Still and Rebecca Metcalfe over 4.9k; bronze was won by Under 15 Boys Michael Lowrie, Andrew Love and Harry Nimmo; Under 17s Oliver Watson-Sweeney, Kalil Shahid and Keir Carolan fought out a hard-earned fifth against Scotland’s strongest road teams.

Top six in the U15 and U17 categories are usually offered places in the Scottish squad for the London Mini Marathon next month and it is hoped that Wallace, Miller, Eunson and Still will be there.

Notably, near neighbours Giffnock North and Kilbarchan Harriers have won ten of the twelve junior team golds available at the 2015 National Cross Country and Road Race Champs.