Portsmouth athlete Teuten shines bright for England in Spain

Alex Teuten in action in Spain
Alex Teuten in action in Spain
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Picture: Shaun Roster Photography

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Alex Teuten is targeting more international recognition after starring for England in the top-class Cross de Atapuerca event held in northern Spain.

The City of Portsmouth athlete was the second scorer for his country in the senior race.

It’s a massive honour to wear the England vest

Alex Teuten

He crossed the line 38th out of 164 finishers with a time 27min 19sec for the 9k course in Burgos.

The high-quality line-up included many of the top African talents.

Ethiopia’s Imane Merga won the race for a third consecutive year as he finished in 25.02.

England’s first finisher was Adam Hickey, of Southend AC, who came home 24th in 26.48.

Teuten followed, ahead of Liverpool’s Daniel Cliffe, who was 43rd in 27.30.

The fourth England team member, Alex Tovey, of Windsor, Slough Eton & Hounslow, did not finish.

Teuten was happy with his display among so many top talents in what proved to be almost like a track race with hard ground and warm weather.

‘It was an amazing experience,’ said Teuten.

‘I was very, very pleased with my run.

‘The England team was strong. Our first runner Adam Hickey is a class act and the other guys have excellent times on the track and in cross country.

‘Because of the heat the course was very dry. The ground was very hard and it made it a bit of a track-oriented race. It was a brutal burn-up.

‘I am more of a cross country specialist so it suits me if the course is muddy and difficult.

‘It was good to be running against some superb athletes who were phenomenally quick.

‘The Spanish club runners are professionals – they are all sponsored.

‘So I was pleased with my finishing position.’

Teuten revealed his pride at his England call-up.

He was delighted to be given the opportunity by team manager Eamonn Martin, a former British record holder for 10k and London Marathon winner in 1993.

Teuten said: ‘It’s a massive honour to wear the England vest.

‘Eamonn is an inspiration. He’s very successful and really nice to talk to. He wants to see us to progress.’

Conditions will be different when Teuten heads to Liverpool tomorrow for the European Cross Country Trials.

Great Britain spots for the Europeans, to be held in France, will go to the top six runners in the trials at Sefton Park.

The next four across the line will secure England vests for international duty later this winter.

It will be another good quality race and Teuten believes his international experience will propel him forward.

He added: ‘Having competed in the international, it should be a good stepping stone for me ahead of the European trials.

‘You get quality athletes like Andy Vernon, Jonny Hay and Steve Vernon there, so competition will be fierce.

‘They have had a lot of rain in Liverpool, so that will be much more up my street.

‘I will go there and run my own race.

‘It would be nice to make one of the teams.’