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Gateshead UK Challenge

- 11th Nov 2008
Steve finished 4th behind under-23 European 5,000 metre champion Andy Vernon

Steve finished 4th behind European under-23 5,000 metre champion Andy Vernon

Stockport Harriers’ cross country international Steve Vernon faced the toughest test of his cross country campaign in Gateshead on Saturday at the McCains UK Cross Challenge race series.

Steve battled with Netherlands cross champion Michel Butter and Kenyan athlete Jean Nadyasing and under-23 European five thousand metre champion Andy Vernon of Aldershot around the hilly riverside bowl behind the famous Gateshead athletics stadium to eventualy finish fourth place.

He held off last year’s UK cross champion Frank Tickner of Wells City in the fight for the line but was pleased with the performance going into the UK trial race at Liverpool in a fortnight’s time.

He will hope to claim a place in the Great Britain team at the European Cross Country Championships in Brussels on December 14th.

Steve said the course in Brussels is notoriously muddy which suits the Brits and we should go there thinking we can medal.

Good news for Jess Coulson she will also be back in action for the Harriers at the trial in her first race for over 10 months.

Jess who has been out with an injury competes in the under-20 women’s race.

Jess finished 14th at the European 2006 cross country championships as an under-17.