Nowra Athletics members pick up medals at cross-country titles

The third annual joint Waratah Series Short Course and Little Athletics NSW Cross-Country Championships were held last Sunday at Dapto over the purpose-built Kembla Joggers cross-country course.

Gold medal: Nowra's Cristine Suffolk (centre) won the women’s 45-49 years 7500m race.

Gold medal: Nowra's Cristine Suffolk (centre) won the women’s 45-49 years 7500m race.

The joint venture, between Athletics NSW and Little Athletics NSW, conducted events from under 7s to 75+ years. The event also incorporated the 104th NSW short course cross-country, first held in 1906.

Nowra brought home two gold medals on the day. Cristine Suffolk was the victor in the women’s 45-49 years 7500m race, finishing in 33min4sec in front of Sally Hannah from Athletics East and Joanne Crawford from Kembla Joggers.

Troy Whittington also claimed gold in the men’s U20 5000m in 15.46. Troy ran in just in front of James Seal from Kembla Joggers who clocked 15.56 whilst third was William Kerr from Randwick Botany Harriers in 16.00.

Annette Sampson snatched a silver medal in the women’s 55-59 years 5000m in 22.55 behind Robyn Basman from Illawong Revesby Workers (21.26) and well ahead of third place getter Desie Joannides from Bankstown (28.42).

For the Dyball family athleticism clearly ‘runs’ in the family with five members of the family competing in the event. Toby Dyball was 8th in the U11 2000m clocking 7.44. Will Dyball finished 10th in the U14 3000m in 11.10 and Ella Dyball was 18th in the U15 4000m in 16.56. Meanwhile in the fun runs Noah Dyball ran in 12th in the 2km event and Gavin Dyball was 14th in the 4km fun run.

As expected the Men’s Open 7500m race was hotly contested. Jordan Gusman from Bankstown claimed his third consecutive win in as many weeks, following on from his Waratah Series Cross-Country win in Nowra and a win at the 10km road race on the Gold Coast last weekend. Jordan finished the course in 22.31. Second was Rorey Hunter (22.38), also from Bankstown and third was Ben St Lawrence (22.41) from Run Crew. Nowra’s Arron Spiessberger-Parker ran well to place 11th in this highly competitive race; crossing in the exact same time as Joe Burgess from Sydney University. Arron clocked 24.07.

The Cox family demonstrated their commitment to running with three representatives on the course. At the helm of the family, Milton Cox showed them how it’s done, finishing 6th in the Men’s 65-69 years 5000m in 25.18. Son Owen Cox, having recently made his return to running, finished 4th in the 4km Fun Run in 15.58 and young Dylan Cox ran well to finish 26th in the U9 1500m in 8.03 minutes.

Alexis Charalambous competed in the U15 4000m, finishing 12th in 15.59 and Jade Mustapic placed a commendable 5th in the U18 event in 16.45. Gilligan Vaughan finished 21st in the U13 3000m in 13.05.

Well done to everyone who competed.

Silver lining: Annette Sampson (left) finished second in the women’s 55-59 years 5000m.

Silver lining: Annette Sampson (left) finished second in the women’s 55-59 years 5000m.

Top of the podium: Nowra Athletics' Troy Whittington (centre) claimed gold in the men’s U20 5000m.

Top of the podium: Nowra Athletics' Troy Whittington (centre) claimed gold in the men’s U20 5000m.

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