Katir and Irene Sánchez-Escribano lead Spain in the European cross country

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Katir and Irene Sánchez-Escribano lead Spain in the European cross country

Mohamed Katir, 5000m European runner-up and 1500m world bronze in the open air, and Irene Sánchez Escribano, two-time national cross-country champion, lead the Spanish team made up of forty athletes that will compete in the next European Cross Country Championship in Turin (Italy) on December 11.

Forty athletes (20 women and 20 men) have been shortlisted after meeting the criteria established by the coach José Peiró and the sports management of the Royal Spanish Athletics Federation. Six athletes per gender will compete in three categories (absolute, sub23 and sub20), while four athletes (two per gender) will be part of the mixed relay.

International medalists and Spanish champions lead the Spanish team, among them the runner-up in Europe in the 5000 and world bronze in the 1500 Mohamed Katir. The Spanish record holder of 1500, 3000 and 5000 is looking to shine in the cross country and after achieving a fantastic sixth place in Itálica he will face the slopes of the tough La Mandria Park circuit.

He will be accompanied in Turin by the first three Spanish classifieds in the last European cross, key in the achievement of team silver. Nassim Hassaous finished seventh in Fingal-Dublin, closely followed by two-time Spanish cross-country champion Carlos Mayo (11th) and Abdessamad Oukhelfen (12th).

The team is completed by two athletes who have competed at a good level in this cross season as Roberto Alaiz, who returns to a European cross-country seven years later, and Sergio Paniagua, second in Alcobendas.

In women, three absolute Spanish champions are part of the team, including the two-time national cross-country champion Irene Sánchez-Escribano in what will be her third European Championship. She is accompanied by the team Carolina Robles, current Spanish champion of 3000 meters obstacles (distance in which she played the Olympic final in Tokyo), and Marta Garcia, the current ‘queen’ of the Spanish 5000, who ran the mixed relay in Fingal-Dublin 2021.

Also on the list is the Spanish woman who has shone the most in the current edition of the World Athletics Cross Country Tour, the Asturian Isabel Barreiro, who will debut in the absolute category in Turin after winning the Cross of Zornotza (Amorebieta).

One of the great surprises of the course also debuts with Spain, the Catalan Naima Ait Alibou, that after finishing sixth in Soria gave the bell in Atapuerca, finishing ninth and earning the ticket for the European Championship as the first Spanish.

The team is completed by the European 1500 indoor finalist Águeda Marquésalso Ibero-American distance runner-up.

The mixed relay is led by a triple European bronze medalist Jesús Gómez (twice 1500 m indoor and once mixed relay), along with Olympic and world 800 finalist Adrian Benboth first and second in the selective test held in Itálica.

Solange Pereira brings the experience gained from her eight national road mile titles and another newcomer like Rosalía Tárraga completes the team, who won in Santiponce with a hasty sprint.

Peiró: “The teams that we take to the European Championship are to not give up anything”

Jose Peiro, Spanish athletics coach, declared that lThe teams with which they will compete in the European Cross Country Championship in Turin (December 11) have the necessary level “so as not to give up anything and fight to be on top in all the tests”.

“We aspire to achieve the maximum number of medals both individually and as teams. We believe within the area of ​​high performance and the sports management of the federation that the teams are to not give up anything and fight to be on top in all categories”, said Peiró, at a press conference.

“In addition, in the absolute category, up to three athletes who manage to get into the top eight and who would have a direct pre-selection place for the World Cup in Australiasomething to take into account ”, he stressed.

Complete list of shortlisted

– Absolute feminine: Naima Ait Alibou, Isabel Barreiro, Marta García, Águeda Marqués, Carolina Robles and Irene Sánchez-Escribano.

– Absolute masculine: Roberto Alaiz, Nassim Hassaous, Mohamed Katir, Carlos Mayo, Abdessamad Oukhelfen and Sergio Paniagua.

– Mixed relay: Adrián Ben, Jesús Gómez, Solange Pereira and Rosalía Tárraga.

– Under-23 female: Alicia Berzosa, María González, Carmen Riaño, Laura Rodríguez, Andrea Romero and Ángela Viciosa.

– Under-23 male: Miguel Baidal, Adrià Ceballos, Aarón las Heras, Àdam Maijó, Miguel Ángel Martínez Chazarra, Pol Oriach.

– Women’s U20: Antía Castro, Inés Docampo, María Forero, Iraia Mendia, Marta Serrano and María Viciosa.

– Sub20 male: David Cantero, Eric Loré, Jaime Migallon, Mario Monreal, Ronaldo Olivo and Aleix Vives.

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