Times trio are top of their class

PUBLISHED: 14:24 13 February 2008 | UPDATED: 22:20 26 October 2009

THREE Times Territory athletes won county titles at the 2008 Herts Schools Cross-Country Championships in St Albans. Oaklands College student Ronnie Sparke claimed the senior boys race, while Herts Phoenix runner Edward Shepherd was first home in the ju

THREE Times Territory athletes won county titles at the 2008 Herts Schools' Cross-Country Championships in St Albans.

Oaklands College student Ronnie Sparke claimed the senior boys' race, while Herts Phoenix runner

Edward Shepherd was first home in the junior boys' age group.

Dame Alice Owen's School pupil Sophie Conner was also victorious in her intermediate girls' event.

All three are now in pole position to be picked for the Herts team that will travel to the English Schools' National Cross-Country Championships in Liverpool next month.

The senior boys' championship went right to the wire. Sparke finished the Verulamium Park course in St Albans first in a time of 24 minutes 08 seconds.

Just two seconds behind him was 2007 race winner Dominic Easter, of St Albans Boys' School.

Other athletes from Times Territory to complete the challenging route included fifth-placed Ben Nagy, of Dame Alice Owen's in Potters Bar, in 25 mins 10 secs.

Three further Oaklands College students were in the top 17 finishers. Rhys Glastonbury came seventh in 26 mins 13 secs with Josh Moss two places behind him in ninth place with 26 mins 55 secs.

Callum McKechnie was 17th in a time of 29 mins 22 secs. Herts Phoenix athlete Peter Townsend, a pupil at Richard Hale in Hertford, grabbed 11th spot in 28 mins 06 secs.

The sole Times Territory athlete to take part in the senior girls' event was Laura Whitehead.

The Herts Phoenix girl was fifth with a time of 15 mins 08 secs.

In the inter boys' race, Herts Phoenix runner Tom Gough finished in the bronze medal position in 20 mins 56 secs.

Stanborough School's Joe Gaynor came home in 15th spot, almost two minutes behind Gough after clocking 22 mins 55 secs.

Potters Bar schoolgirl Sophie Conner was the clear winner of the intermediate race.

She finished in 13 mins 20 secs, which was nearly a minute ahead of Abigail MacKinnon-Austin.

Herts Phoenix U15 long distance specialists Edward Shepherd and Vasudev Zaver came first and second respectively in the junior boys' category.

Shepherd took the glory in 15 mins 25 secs with club-mate Zaver eight seconds behind him.

Fellow Herts Phoenix runner Alex Cloona finished in seventh place in 16 mins 18 secs.

Reece Ballett, from Dame Alice

Owen's, was 18th in 17 mins 23 secs and Stanborough pupil Kobayne Wilson came home in 35th place in 18 mins 18 secs.

Bishops Hatfield Girl's School pupil Ella Lloyd came 11th in the junior championships after finishing a second over 13 minutes.

The Dame Alice Owen's duo of Charlotte Michael and Jessica Prior were behind her in 22nd and 34th place respectively in times of 13 mins 33 secs and 14 mins 18 secs.

Other finishers included Stanborough's Holly Trim in 15 mins 05 secs and Danielle West three seconds later.

Dame Alice Owen's schoolgirls Bethany Fenner and Rebecca Simpson came home in the same time of 15 mins 28 secs.

Claire Goldfinch was just behind them in 15 mins 34 secs, while Laura Bird finished in a time of 17 mins 33 secs.

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