THE region's distance runners enjoyed one of their biggest ever medal hauls on Saturday at the East District Cross Country Championships.

Over 1000 athletes from up and down the east coast converged on Cupar for the annual races.

And it proved to be a day to remember for the Moorfoot Under 17 Boys who claimed gold.

Selkirk's John McLean picked up a bronze for finishing third overall behind Livingston's Jake Thomas. But more importantly, he led team-mates Jacob Adkin and Jack Stanners to the top of the podium ahead of Pitreavie and Edinburgh AC.

Adkin finished strongly for fourth in the 30-strong field with Stanners just a few metres further back in fifth.

McLean's coach Stephen Nisbet told us: \"We knew if the three boys ran to form they could win the title and they did just that. I'm delighted for the three of them.\"

Rowan Marr from Gala Harriers finished well to cross the line in eighth.

Lucas Cheskin from Moorfoot was 24th and Gala's Broc Drury 27th in the same race.

It was also a golden day for Innerleithen's Stevie Cairns. The policeman from Northern Ireland claimed the Masters title by finishing 21st overall in the seniors race, which was won by Murray Strain.

Fergus Johnston from Gala Harriers finished a further two minutes behind in 39th. Other Harriers inside the top 100 were Mark Bryson in 84th and Colin McCall a further three places behind.

Peebles mum-of-three Susan Ridley also won gold in the senior ladies team event.

The 45-year-old finished 17th overall in the race to help her Edinburgh AC team to the top of the podium.

There were good runs from all three of the Gala Harriers in the senior women's race with Fiona Dalgleish finishing 29th, Rachel Fagan in 34th and Jennifer Forbes crossing the line in 38th.

Scout Adkin from Peebles claimed an individual bronze in the women's Under 20 race. The 19-year-old student finished just 14 seconds behind winner Rachael Dunn of Edinburgh AC.

Adkin's coach Gregor Nicholson said: \"That was an extremely encouraging run from Scout and she is now showing she has the flat speed to compete with the best around.\"

Hawick's Louise Mercer won individual bronze in the Under 17s race behind Central Kathryn Gillespie. Mercer's run also helped her Gala Harriers team to silver with Kerry Sandilands crossing the line in ninth and Karen Maxwell claiming 17th.

Moorfoot athlete Sophie Collins finished seventh in the same race.

Selkirk's Zaynah Aziz just missed out on individual gold in the Under 13s race - finishing a couple of seconds behind winner Lauren Dickson of Lasswade.

But the 12-year-old also helped her Moorfoots team to second as well, with Fiona Grant finishing ninth and Mairi Wallace taking 12th.

Gala Harrier duo Susannah Godfrey-Faussett and Linda McCandlish finished in 24th and 25th, respectively.

There was also a silver lining for the improving Nathan Cox in the Under 15s race. The 14-year-old ran on strongly to chase home Ben Greenwood from Perth.

Cox also led his Gala Harriers team to runners-up spot with Thomas Otton charging home to take 11th and Gavin Bryson crossing the line a few seconds later in 12th.

Kobe Stevens from Peebles finished eighth, while Jason McIntosh from Kelso was 19th, Joseph Agnew from Gala took 34th and David Collins of Peebles was 35th.

Although there were no medal winners from the Borders in the Under 13 Boys, Andrew Hogg from Gala Harriers did well to finish in seventh.

Fellow Harriers Jamie Logan claimed 16th and Faisal Khursheed was 34th. Euan Hood from the Moorfoots club was 15th.

In the Girls Under 15 race Niamh Shaw was 17th for the Moorfoots and Katie Browne of Gala Harriers was 28th.