Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Cowperthwaite the King of the Castle at Nationals; JUNIOR ATHLETICS

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Cowperthwaite the King of the Castle at Nationals; JUNIOR ATHLETICS

Article excerpt

Byline: Bill McGuirk Athletics writer bill_mcguirk@yahoo.com

MIDDLESBROUGH'S Josh Cowperthwaite and Morpeth's Scott Beattie were the region's leading young athletes at the English National Cross-Country Championships at Castle Donnington.

The Teessider finished strongly to win the under-15 contest while Morpeth's Beattie was just pushed back into second place in the under-17 event.

Cowperthwaite faced nearly 400 rivals in the 4.5k race and it was not until the final 400 metres he managed to see off the last of his challengers.

Southampton's Mahamed Zakeriya was pre-race favourite having finished runner-up in last year's championship at Parliament Hill and was crowned South of England champion at the end of January.

However, Cowperthwaite, who was ninth last year, had other ideas and tracked Zakeriya every step of the way before pouncing entering the home straight and going on to win by four seconds.

It has been a win-win campaign so far for the Martin Peevor-trained athlete which has produced gold medals in the North East Championships, North of England Championships and now the National Championships.

Meanwhile, Beattie, who is also the North East and North of England champion, had to give way to South of England champion Isaac Akers of Corby AC in his 6k contest.

The duo pulled well clear of the rest of the field but it was Akers who proved the stronger in the closing stages to go on and win by eight seconds, Beattie crossing the line in second place 14 seconds ahead of thirdplaced Ben Davies of Bedford. Cowperthwaite and Beattie were the region's only young athletes' medallists on the day - but there were a number of other fine performances.

In the under-13 boys' 3k championship, which had 420 finishers, New Marske's Archie Lowe was the region's best finishing in ninth place, three places and seven seconds ahead of Houghton's Henry Johnson. …

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