Double delight

PUBLISHED: 10:46 26 January 2006 | UPDATED: 20:19 03 May 2010

KATHERINE Deal completed an impressive double when she took first place in the Hertfordshire Schools Year Nine Cross Country on Saturday. After eclipsing the competition at Verulamium Park a week earlier, to become county champion, Katherine, aged 14, pro

KATHERINE Deal completed an impressive double when she took first place in the Hertfordshire Schools Year Nine Cross Country on Saturday. After eclipsing the competition at Verulamium Park a week earlier, to become county champion, Katherine, aged 14, produced another convincing display to claim the schools title. She won by such a margin that she also defeated the winner of the intermediate race. Both the schools event and the county championship were hosted at Verulamium Park but the courses were different. Katherine, from St Albans, enjoyed the challenge and was happy with her form. She said: "I think the races went really well. The first one was much tougher as it was very muddy. I find I am more suited to hills and I prefer the courses not to be too flat. I actually found the second course a lot easier." The Beaumont School pupil will hope to continue her tremendous form when she heads to the South of England Championships at Exmouth on Saturday. Katherine will be up against athletes from an older age group and she is remaining focussed on her own performance. She said: "I want to do well in the Southerns but there are a lot of very good people. I hope to run a fast time and that I am not too far away from the leaders." Katherine who is partially sighted, ran at Verulamium Park with club mate Victoria Webster as a guide. Katherine is thankful for her assistance. She said: "She has been a really a big help to me. I talk to her about lots of things and she is really nice and also she is a really good runner." Katherine is devoted to her training and has targeted a good performance in the English Schools Championship later this winter. She said: "I would like to be maybe top 10 in the English Schools because that is my year and the year below. At the moment I am doing three sessions per week, including a hill session and a track session. I love it." Lucy Yates, who is recovering her fitness after a spell on the sidelines, finished in fourth place in her race at the Schools event on Saturday. l Victoria Webster, from St Albans, has been called up by Great Britain for the Under 23's international Cross Country on February 4 in Germany. She will also be running at Exmouth on Saturday.

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