The 18th Welsh Inter-Regional Cross Country Championships will take place at a new venue in Brecon on Saturday 10th December.
Athletes will compete for their regions, with team honours and individual titles at stake. The winning region overall will also be recognised.
Four athletes return to defend their titles from last year with a further seven of last year’s champions competing in a different age group this time.
The Championship programme begins with races for U13’s with the West defending the title in the girl’s race and the South defending the boys title. Daisy Thompson (West) will be hard to stop following her recent fourth place finish in the British Athletics Liverpool Cross Challenge.
The U15 Girls race will feature two of last year’s winners with Nia Clatworthy stepping up from the U13 age group and Mia Roberts who will defend her title. Roberts is also the current Welsh Cross Country Champion for the age group.
Osian Perrin is another athlete who won in Builth Wells last year but will step up to contend the U15 race. James Penrose (South) is the Welsh Champion and finished fifth amongst the best British athletes in Liverpool last month. Nathan Jones (West) was eighth in that race and will also compete in Brecon.
The U17 Women’s race will feature several of the top five placed athletes from the Welsh Championships earlier this year including; Abbie Williams (West), Megan Bowen (South) and Naomi Reed (South). The men’s equivalent age-group will host Dominic Smith (West) and Oliver Barbaresi (North), amongst others.
The U20 women’s race should see two of the UK’s top endurance runners competing, with Cari Hughes (North) and Heidi Davies (East) both entered. Hughes finished sixth in Liverpool and is the current U17 UK CAU Inter-Counties Champion. Davies was fifth at the 2015 World Mountain Running Championships.
The U20 men’s race features a current English Schools Champion, Matthew Willis (North) and experienced international Mountain Runnner, Ciaran Lewis (South).
The Senior women’s race may be wide open with Hannah Jarvis and Kathryn Martthews, both from the East, Carys Hughes, Clara Evans and Kate Roberts all from the South and Alaw Beynon Thomas (West) all running well recently.
The men’s race will see Carwyn Jones (South) and Christian Lovatt (West) start as favourites with Jon Tobin (West), Jack Gooch (South), Phil Matthews (East) and Ricky Challinor (North), the most likely to chase them.
The women’s masters race has many of the top Welsh masters athletes entered such as Katie Beecher (South) and Helen Marshall (West) in the W35 race and Tammy Lewis-Jones (North) in the W45 race.
The M35 race should be competitive with Russell Bentley (North), Chris Prior (North), James Thie (South) and Huw Evans (South) all aiming for the title.
Mike Pfeifer (East), Phil Cook (South) and Eamon Kirk (West) should have their own battle in the M45 race. Ifan Lloyd was second in the M50 race last year and will contend the M55 race this time around.