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Morpeth to lead the way again
THE NORTH-EAST'S top senior men's club team, Morpeth Harriers, are again expected to lead the way at the National Six Stage Road Relay Championships at Sutton Coldfield today.
The Northumbrians have been the region's top performers in the prestigious event, which attracts the cream of UK road runners, over the past nine years but during that time have only once managed to battle their way into the medals, finishing runners-up in 2005 when their Great Britain international Ian Hudspith - now a 43-year-old veteran - lifted them from fourth to second on the anchor leg.
Since then Morpeth have finished in the top ten only three times and last year were 16th, four places ahead of the second North-East team, Gateshead.
Hudspith, who tops the current UK veterans' 10K rankings, has become a stalwart of the Morpeth team, having helped win the bronze medals at the North of England Six Stage Championships at Blackpool last month.
Durham City are expected to be the leading North-East team in the women's four-stage championships, having finished fifth at Stanley Park where Great Britain international and North-East cross country champion Rosie Smith ran the second fastest leg.
n Jarrow and Hebburn's Brendan McMillan won the Derwentside AC Hellhole multi-terrain 10K in a time of 36 mins, beating North Shields Polytechnic veteran Ian Twaddle by 53 seconds. Blackhill Bounders veteran Sarah Lister won the women's race in 42 mins 23 secs.
n Saltwell Harriers have decided not to include any young athletes races alongside their ever-popular 10K road race on Saturday, December 21, because of last year's disappointing entry numbers.