Top endurance stars flock to Liverpool for European cross country trials

Ross Millington
The best Cross Country runners in the United Kingdom will descend on Sefton Park on  Saturday, to battle for spots on the British team for next month’s European Cross Country Championships in Lisbon.


Charlotte Arter (handicap -2.0) and defending series champion Kate Avery (handicap -0.3) won the respective Cardiff and Milton Keynes legs of the Cross Challenge series and will be strong contenders to take maximum points in Liverpool.

Dani Chattenton (handicap -0.3), who leads the senior women’s standings heading in, has shown good form in the first two meets and will be in contention, along with Inter Counties champion Jennifer Nesbitt (handicap -1.4), while Emily Hosker-Thornhill (handicap -0.6) and Amy Griffiths (handicap -0.7) will be nearby.

For the Under-23s places, which will be decided within the senior races, the field will be led by Abbie Donnelly (handicap -1.0), who will hope to transition her road form onto the grass, and Bronwen Owen (handicap 0.4), who came home third in Milton Keynes behind Avery & Griffiths.

Cari Hughes (handicap 3.8) makes her return to the Cross Country scene for the first time since the U20 race at the 2018 Euro Cross in Tilburg, the Netherlands, with Amelia Quirk (handicap -0.9) expected to again showcase her pedigree on the terrain in Liverpool.

Winner of last year’s senior men’s race Ross Millington (handicap -4.0) will be back looking to defend his crown and arrives in good form having finished second at the Leeds Abbey Dash 10K, lowering his personal best by one second to 28:39.

This should be the race of the day as many uner-23s have impressed this winter and could be ahead of their senior rivals especialy if 62-minute half marathoner, Jake Smith (handicap -5.7) toes the line. The overall leader of the Cross Challenge Series, Mahamed Mahamed (handicap -5.4), will run and is likely to extend his lead in the standings. European U23 Championship 10,000m bronze medallist Emile Cairess (handicap -6.0) will also be a key contender.

27-minute 10k runner, Alex Yee (handicap -3.6) should be in the hunt, along with twin brothers Petros Petros Surafel (handicap -4.4) and Paulos Surafel (handicap -3.9) whilst Tom Mortimer (handicap -4.4) will look for a place on the team as an Under-23 having stepped up from the junior ranks.

BUCS champion, Alex Teuten (handicap -5.3) has shown consistency in the previous two meets and could be in contention along with former series champion Sam Stabler (handicap -4.3) who impressed with a second-place in Milton Keynes. 

The action commences at 11am on Saturday with the combined Under-11 race and the senior men’s race closing the programme at 2:05pm at Sefton Park, Liverpool.