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Posted on: 17/02/2019

Jessica wins Greater Manchester intermediate cross-country championships

Runner 02 19 1Brilliant Sale Harrier prospect Jessica Spilsbury ran away from the field to win the Greater Manchester intermediate cross-country championships at Heaton Park.

The 15-year-old Loreto Grammar School GCSE pupil from Timperley maintained a 50-metre lead over a strong field to win by eight seconds over a tough 4Km course and qualify for the national finals.

Jessica has been running since the age of just five–years-old, initially trained by her father and qualified coach Bob Spilsbury at Sale but now under Richard Goddard at their Wythenshawe Park facility.

She completes five sessions every week normally of around two-and-a-half hours each and say she loves every second.

“I love the sense of fulfilment and freedom. There’s nothing better than after a hard day’s work at school than to go out training.”

As an up and coming middle distance star much of her work is focuses on 1K repetitions as well as gym work and sprint and endurance training.

Jessica also captains the Loreto Athletics and Cross-Country side teams and says she is proud to be at school which has such a wonderful on the national stage

“Loreto has regularly qualified for the National Schools’ Cross-country finals and I feel there are a number of like minded girls who run and work together as a team.’

Jessica is hoping to study Psychology at university and is aiming to get an athletics scholarship so she can take her sporting life as far as possible.

She said: “Running definitely requires a lot of mental skills: focus, determination and tactical skill. Above all you have to keep going, but you’ve also got to concentrate and just keep looking around you to see what the opposition is doing.”

Her favourite runner is Laura Muir and she said of the British champion: “I love the way she rose steadily through the ranks. She’s a good example.”

Head of Physical Education at the top Altrincham based Catholic school, Catherine Ball, said: “Jessica works quietly and calmly but with great passion and is a top class young runner and leader. She is a joy to work with and a credit to her family, club and school.’ 

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