By Matthew Kiernan

Croydon Harriers’ U20 men enjoyed a golden Surrey Cross-Country Championships at Lloyd Park by clinching the team title for the first time in the club’s history.

The team were led home by Peter Chambers who clinched individual bronze over the undulating 6.5km course in 26 minutes, 35 seconds.

Mark Plackett (26:43) was one place further back and Ben Savill (11th, 28:51) completed the scoring trio finishing well clear of their nearest challengers. 

With 42 Harriers in action across the 10 different age group races, there were a further four individual top 20 finishes from Croydon athletes.

Rob Spalding fought hard for a well-earned sixth position in the U15 boys' race and training compatriot Stevie Lawrence finished seventh in the U17 women’s races, with the pair both putting themselves in contention for Surrey selection in the process.

David White spearheaded the men’s challenge, crossing the line in 17th over the 12km course in 45:37. He led Croydon to ninth overall, five places higher than 12 months ago at this competition.

The 25-year-old was ably supported by Andy Simms (35th, 37:44), David Brown (77th, 52:09), Martin Rowe (116th, 55:38) and Julian Dillow (120th, 56:12) in the 173 strong-field.

Topping the other age groups for Croydon were Robbie Tambling (U13 boys, 47th), Abbie Burrett (U13 girls, 33rd) and Sophie Bates (senior women, 29th). 

Emily Howe (U15 girls) and Joshua Haasz (U17 men) both enjoyed top 20 positions with the pair both finishing 16th.

In the other team results, the U13 and U15 girls quartets were both eighth, while the U15 boys and U17 men both finished fourth.