NortH Herts Road Runners pipped reigning Three Counties Cross-Country League champions Wootton RR by just three points to win the second fixture at Shuttleworth near Biggleswade on Sunday. A new course in the winter calendar saw the Squirrels finish secon

NortH Herts Road Runners pipped reigning Three Counties Cross-Country League champions Wootton RR by just three points to win the second fixture at Shuttleworth near Biggleswade on Sunday.

A new course in the winter calendar saw the Squirrels finish second in both the men's and women's categories but an overall better aggregate score resulted in the Letchworth-based club emerging as the winners.

Neil Miller (winner), Nick Beresford (seventh), Steve McKeown (12th), Pete Northover (17th), Pete Sibbett (18th), Gary Cook (19th) and Pete Kelland (22nd) were the scorers for the men's team.

Astrid McKeown (runner-up), Paula Adams (fifth) and Jane Chappell (10th) got the points for the ladies.

All the scorers were well supported by another 43 club members who ran well to swing the result in favour of the club.

The next fixture is being hosted by North Herts Road Runners on December 17.

Stevenage and North Herts AC put out its largest number of runners at a cross-country league meeting for many years.

A total of 41 travelled to the Chiltern League Division Two event at Stockwood Park, Luton, on Saturday.

The middle distance runners were joined by sprinters and jumpers competing as part of their strength training programme for next summer.

Although a bright sunny day, there was a strong wind which tested all the runners on the stretches where it blew straight at them.

Two of the club's teams proved to be the best in their age group on the day.

The under-20/under-17 women's team is always successful in this league, helped greatly by Sara Bailey coming home from university to lead the team.

Bailey won, Jo Mansell was the runner-up, with Lauren Cunningham (eighth), Francesca Witney (ninth), Jasmine Forde (10th), Tilly Scheuber (11th) and Bunmi Awokoya (15th) making up the rest of the team.

The under-13 girls' team improved from third place in the first match to win here; led home by Hannah Dewhurst in third place.

She was closely followed by Sarah Pike (eighth) and Alex Gates (ninth), with Temi Fajobi (17th), Charlotte Baird (19th), Kathryn Sweetlove (21st), and new members Lori Collins (22nd) and Nicola Yates (23rd) completing the club's entries.

Three teams were second in their age groups.

They were the under-17 men - Callum McKechnie (sixth), Aaron Reynolds (seventh), Josh Moss (eighth), Louis Naylor (12th) and Sean Pollen (13th).

The under-15 boys - Lewis Keeble (sixth), Greg Evans (ninth), Warren Herridge (11th), Luke Lansley (12th), Glenn Turner (13th), David Pickett (15th) and Nick Stoppard (22nd).

And the under-13 boys - Matthew Leach (third), Paul Spicer (fourth), Danny Buckley (sixth), Tom Sheren (10th), Peter De'Ath (12th) and Tom Kinsella (14th).

The under-15 girls' team were fifth with Amy Pring (11th), Louise O'Connell (17th), Julia White (22nd) and Ashley Clarke (25th).

In the senior, veterans and under-20 men's race, Marcus McKechnie showed a welcome return to form after injury and illness to come third.

Dan Poulton followed him home in eighth, Adam Searle was 10th and Sam Poulton 18th.

Marcus, Dan and Sam were first, second and third of the under-20s in the event. The team were sixth.

The Fairlands Valley Spartans member Roger Biggs completed a marathon in his 42nd different state in his quest to become the first Briton to run a marathon in all 50 states.

The inaugural Outer Banks Marathon was a point-to-point course along or near the Atlantic coast in North Carolina. While generally good running weather, runners had to endure a tropical storm and all got rather wet. Roger finished in 3-38:19.

Three Spartans took in the sights and scenery of the Sharpenhoe Clappers and surrounding countryside.

Starting and finishing at Barton, Sharon Crowley and Paul Holgate completed the Steppingley off-road marathon in 5-30:44, while Dave Carter finished in 6-33:05.

The recent Stevenage Half Marathon was the biggest participation sports event in the town this year. It has now been run on 20 consecutive years and the 2006 race raised thousands of pounds for local charities.

Spartans did even better than they first thought.

Their women's team of Chris King, Amanda Brook and Tracy Pez won gold in the Hertfordshire open team championship, and also claimed the overall women's team prize in the race and were second in the South of England Championship.

The B team of Anna Bourne, Vicky McCarthy and Sara O'Callaghan won bronze in the county championships.

Chris King also led the Spartans' women to gold in the county team championship for veterans. The other members of this team were Sara O'Callaghan and Alison Suckling.

The Spartan men won gold in the county team championship for veteran men. All finished in less than 90 minutes. The y were Andrew Garrett (1-25:42), Graham Blackburn (1-26:17), Jim Brown (1-27:10) and Michael Green (1-28:16).

Brown was the gold medallist in the 'supervet' (50 plus) category.

Six Spartans enjoyed the Kasterlee Marathon in Belgium at the weekend. This was a lovely trail marathon.

Hindered only by the rain and mud, Mike Newbitt finished in 3-33, Carol Paul 4-16, Dave Paul 4-44, Michaela Norton-Lay and Mark Sanders 4-47. Kevin Lawlor did the half-marathon in 2-02.

P Clifton schoolboy Ryan Parker, who runs for Bedford and County AC, was a clear winner at the second of the Chiltern League meetings held in Luton on Saturday.

Ryan finished the 6000m course in 18:53, 28 seconds ahead of second placed runner Dan Clorley.