Pakuranga Athletics Club runners Imogen Barlow and Ben Oxford have won national titles at the 2021 Athletics New Zealand Cross-country Championships.
Run in very cold conditions at the Chisholm Links in Dunedin, Barlow claimed the under-14 3km girls title with a time of 11m 31s while Oxford took out the under-14 3km boys race in 10m 52s.
The NZ Cross Country champs is a pinnacle event on the NZ Athletics running calendar and held every year in different locations.
Pakuranga Athletics Club Junior Cross Country chairperson Rodney Oxford said the 2021 Dunedin event comprised a very challenging 3km course and in sometimes very testing conditions.
“The U14 race luckily was run in the sunshine however the horizontal hail in the afternoon created freezing conditions for the U16 races,” he said.
“Ben Oxford and Imogen Barlow performed superbly in the U14 event. Both these athletes overcame strong fields and led from start to finish. A great double for Pakuranga Athletics Club.
It’s a great testament that hard work and doing the mahi pays off as both these upcoming athletes are well known in the club for many hours of weekly training and dedication to their sport. Watch out for these names as there is more success for these two to come in the future.”
Another Pakuranga junior athletes to place was Christian De Vaal who finished second in the junior men’s U18 race.