Wallasey Athletic Club started the day in a strong position last Saturday in the final mob run in the Liverpool & District Cross-Country League and went on to win the event and the championship, thus enhancing their reputation as the leading cross-country club on Merseyside this year.
John Wright and Ron Barlow soon established their position at the head of the field, John Wright now fully recovered from the slight illness which impaired his running in the Waterloo Road Race - ran steadily with Barlow until the last mile, when he find deftly extended the pace and drew away from Barlow to win by 30 seconds in the excellent time of 35 mins. 25 secs.
Kevin Mather, still a little short of distance turned in on excellent performance to finish in ninth place, which establishes him as a bright prospect in local cross-country circles.
Pete White had an off day and was at one time struggling in the middle of the pack of over 120 runners, but fought to such good effect in the later stages of the race that he finished in 14th place.
For the first time Brian Chalton made the counting team, finishing in 22nd place. This was a great performance from a runner who, I feel sure, will improve considerably before the end of the sea son.
Wallasey's points total of 53, to Pembroke's 70 and Liverpool Harriers' 111, made them easy winners of the championship. To date the handicap result is not to hand, but it is probable that Wallasey also won this event.
From the results of these three league races, it is clear, that Wallasey have five runners ranking in the top dozen on Merseyside, and the possibility of having both senior and junior individual champions in the persons of John Wright and Ron Barlow respectively in local championships, as these two have obviously established themselves in the top positions.
Apologies are due to Ron Barlow for last week's report refering to him as running below form in the Waterloo Road Race, but at that time I was not aware that whilst running in the leading bunch, he had tripped and suffered a heavy fall.
The annual Wallasey Schools Cross-Country Championships are being held today from the Wallasey Athletic Club's headquarters at Leasowe Road. Teams from all the local schools have entered and keen competition for the A. G. Nicholson trophy is anticipated.
In the past years Moreton Secondary Modern School have established themselves as champions with the exception of one year when the Secondary Technical School were successful in winning, and a particularly keen race between these two teams is again to be expected.
In addition to the schoolboys' race, the open Youth Championship of Wallasey is also to be held.
These events will be started by Mr H. R. B. Wood the Director of Education, and the afternoon's sport will be concluded by the presentation of awards by the Mayor, Alderman M. E. Boggin.
Members of Wallasey Athletic Club are asked to report at club headquarters by 2:30 p.m. to act as course markers. The first race is timed to start at 3:00 p.m.
From this afternoon's races Wallasey Athletic Club hope that further talent may be unearthed to strengthen the boys' and youths' teams for the ensuing championship season. Any boy interested in joining the club should contact the hon. gen. secretary, Matt Smith, at 29 Beechwood Avenue, Wallasey, or ring Bob McCaig at New Brighton 1632.