ATHLETES from the South Lakes have excelled on the international stage at the inaugural European Off-Road Running Championships in Spain.

The competition was hosted in La Palma between July 1 and July 3, and was the first time that the mountain running and trail races will take place at the same event.

The team came away with 11 medals from the event, with two gold, three silver and six bronze medals to finish fourth on the medal table overall.

The GB and NI team got off to a great start in the first race of the day, with the Under-20 men finishing in bronze medal position in the team standings.

Germany and Spain took gold and silver respectively, but Charlie Allmond of Ambleside finished 13th and Ben O'Dowd of Eden Runners came 15th to secure a podium spot for the team.

The Senior Women Team scooped a gold medal in the Uphill event - Scout Adkin, from the Ambleside club, was the first of the team to finish as she was fourth overall, just 22 seconds off the podium positions on her senior debut for the British team.

Post-race, she said: "It was an amazing race to be part of. 

"A bitter-sweet feeling at the moment, having been in medal position nearly all the way but a great experience and being back on a GB team, especially after so many years of injury, illness, and disappointment. 

"It was so good to be part of an amazing gold medal-winning team."

Chris Richards of Helm Hill finished a strong 17th as the Senior Men Uphill team came fourth overall.

On the second day, Sharon Taylor of Helm Hill earned a top ten finish in a time of 4 hours, 41 minutes, and 26 seconds in the women's Trail race. 

The Westmorland Gazette: The women's trail race teamThe women's trail race team

It was a position she held from the 20km mark and contributed to the team’s overall bronze medal placing.

After a fourth-place finish in the uphill-only race on Friday, Scout Adkin returned on the final day to scoop bronze in the challenging up and down mountain course, battling to a time of one hour, 19 minutes, and 35 seconds.

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In the up and down team event, the team achieved another bronze, Hannah Russell of Helm Hill contributing with an 18th-placed finish.

To finish off the spectacle, the senior men's up and down team finished fifth overall, with Chris Richards of Helm Hill achieving seventh place - the top British finisher.