UKA have announced the Aviva Great Britain and Northern Ireland team selected for the 37th IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Amman, Jordan on Saturday 28 March.
The World Cross assault will be spearheaded by McCain UK Cross Challenge, Inter-Counties and World trials winners Andy Vernon (Aldershot, Farnham & District) and Stephanie Twell (Aldershot, Farnham & District).
19-year-old Twell clinched her place after an impressive win at the trials in Nottingham on Saturday (7). It was the latest in a succession of cross country victories for the three times European Junior champion since her step up to the senior ranks at the turn of the year.
Also named in the senior teams are; Frank Tickner (Wells City), who finished second in the trials and 10th at the 2008 European Cross Country Championships in Brussels and 2009 Cross Country National champion and former 3k steeplechase British record holder Hatti Dean (Hallamshire Harriers).
The junior teams include trials winners Nick Goolab (Belgrave Harriers) and Lilly Partridge (Aldershot, Farnham & District). Also in the team is European junior silver medallist Charlotte Purdue (Aldershot, Farnham & District), who is one of an incredible eight athletes from the Hampshire club to be named in the GB & NI team.
Ian Stewart, National Endurance Coach, UKA said: “The World Cross Country Championships is one of the toughest tests any distance runner can possibly face. But this is not something that we should shy away from. On the contrary, it is fantastic opportunity for British athletes to compete against the very best endurance athletes in the world a highly competitive environment.
“Medals will be very hard to come by and may even be beyond our athletes at this stage of their development. But they can use these championships as a stepping stone towards being in a stronger position to challenge for podium positions at future championships on the track as well as the country.
AVIVA GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND TEAM
Keith Gerrard (Newham and Essex Beagles); Lee Merrien (Newham & Essex Beagles); Phil Nicholls (Tipton Harriers); Michael Skinner (Blackheath & Bromley Harriers AC); Frank Tickner (Wells City); Andy Vernon (Aldershot, Farnham & District)
Hatti Dean (Hallamshire Harriers); Freya Murray (Chester le Street); Jane Potter (Charnwood AC); Sarah Tunstall (Kendal AAC); Stephanie Twell (Aldershot, Farnham & District); Hannah Whitmore (Charnwood AC)
Tom Farrell (Border Harriers); Nick Goolab (Belgrave Harriers); Jonathan Hay (Aldershot, Farnham & District); Simon Horsfield (East Cheshire Harriers & Tameside AC); Ronnie Sparke (Woodford Green & Essex Ladies); James Wilkinson (Leeds City AC);
Kate Avery (Shildon Running); Lauren Howarth (Leigh Harriers); Laura Park (Ellenborough AC); Lilly Partridge (Aldershot, Farnham & District); Charlotte Purdue (Aldershot, Farnham & District); Louise Small (Aldershot, Farnham & District)