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Macklin simply too fast

A determined Michael Macklin leads Anthony Rowe-Penny. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

Michael Macklin took fastest time honours when the ACM Masterton Harriers held the first race in their 2017 cross country series at Taratahi’s Mangarata farm at Caves road, Whangaehu.

As usual the first race of the series was a grading event, aimed at establishing the grades for the remaining races, and the mass start (except for the midget grade) meant there was some congestion on the early part of the course.

The course provided a mix of uneven ground with some tough climbs and easier lime trails with a new feature being the additional steep hill loop which replaced the usual flat section at the start and finish.

This new loop was an exceptionally tough climb followed by a tricky descent.

The overall course was 2km in length with adults required to do three laps (6km), walkers and juniors (under-16) two laps, intermediates (under-13) one lap and the midget grade (under-10) 1km around the early part of the course.

Of the 69 starters, 66 completed the course as three athletes suffered ankle injuries on the rougher terrain.

None of these problems had any effect on Macklin though as he sped over the 6kms in 29mins 55secs.

Anthony Rowe-Penny was second fastest in 33mins 16secs, followed by Dominic Green (33mins 43secs) and Corey Miller (33mins 49secs).

The best of the walkers was Michael Rowe-Penny who completed the 4kms in 31mins 46secs, well ahead of Tim Bird (36mins 51secs) and Brian Sanders (37mins 28secs).

The fastest junior was Jack Britland in 24mins 11secs with Jordan Robinson second in 24mins 28secs and MacKenzie Murray third in 29mins 15secs.

The intermediate event saw Bailey Robinson record the quickest time of 14mins 35secs for the 2kms, followed by Jacquelyn Murray (14mins 46secs) and Brooke Miller (15mins 23secs).

In the midget grade, the Gawith brothers Sam and William had a close battle, Sam clocking 7mins 15secs for the 1km and William 7mins 57secs.

The next race in the series will be at Elmley farm, Taueru on Sunday, April 23 with the walkers and midget grade heading off at 9.45am.

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