Reh chases golden hat-trick in Hyères

Reh chases golden hat-trick in Hyères
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Germany's Alina Reh will try to add another medal in the junior race in Hyères after the two golds she claimed at the European Athletics Junior Championships last summer.

Alina Reh had quite a summer with double gold at the European Athletics Junior Championships – and she has the chance to finish 2015 in style.

Reh, 18, will be among the 21 German runners at next weekend’s SPAR European Cross Country Championships in Hyères, 12 months on from finishing fourth in the junior event but still making the podium as her team won bronze.

Now she is back in that junior race after showing what a star she is by winning the 3000m (9:12.29) and 5000m (16:02.01) in less than 24 hours in Eskilstuna last summer.

She will be joined by fellow junior Konstanze Klosterhafen in a squad where Germany will also have teams in the men’s under-23 and men's junior races.

There will be only two German men in the senior race but they could contend for medals. Richard Ringer is a world 5000m finallist and 3000m winner at the European Athletics Team Championships while Florian Orth finished tenth in the 1500m final at the European Athletics Championships in Zurich.

Ringer has been in great form having triumphed at the Warandeloop in Tilburg on 22 November, a European Athletics Cross Country Permit Meeting.

This was one of his biggest cross country wins defeating Dutchman Khalid Choukoud and Belgium’s Isaac Kimeli by 17 seconds.

The British team is as strong as ever, with 36 runners filling all six spots in all six races.

They are led by Gemma Steel and Kate Avery, the respective gold and silver medallists from Samokov last December, while their junior women’s team will also be defending their title.

Laura Muir has had a fine 2015 and will hope to end it with a medal in the under-23 race after missing out at both major events. She was fourth in the 3000m at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Prague in March and then fifth in the 1500m at the IAAF World Championships in Beijing in August.

Poland are sending a squad of 14 to Hyères, with Tomasz Grycko and Matylda Kowal in the senior races and a full men’s under-23 team of Szymon Kulka, Patryk Pawlowski, Andrzej Rogiewicz, Pawel Szostak and Mateusz Wyszomirski.

Among the Czech Republic’s squad will be one senior man in Petr Vitner and three senior women – Eva Krchova, Monika Preibischova and Lucie Sekanova.