Category Archives: CrossCountry_Reports

BAC stars run for Dorset in UK Inter Counties Cross Country

Dorset Senior Women's team at UK Inter Counties XC
Harriet Slade (left) and Nikki Sandell (right) were part of the Dorset team in the Senior Women’s race at the UK Inter Counties Cross Country, along with Alex Door (920) and Sarah Swift (927)

Long stretches of thick, gloopy, shoe swallowing mud and an extraordinarily high standard of competition was the order of the day for the Team Dorset runners when they ventured up to Loughborough for the UK Inter Counties Cross Country Championships.

Several Bournemouth AC runners had been selected to represent the county in the event including Richard Brawn and Rob McTaggart for the Senior Men and Harriet Slade and Nikki Sandell for the Senior Women.

There were also some BAC juniors who had made the journey up to Leicestershire, with Oliver James and Jasper Todd going in the Under 17 Men’s race, Neve East and Martha Preece in the Under 15 Girls race, Oscar Ewen Matthews and Stanley Peters in the Under 13 Boys category and Erin Wells featuring in the Under 13 Girls race.

It was set to be an interesting afternoon for the BAC athletes, with many highs and lows to be experienced amongst them. Up against the cream of the crop from counties all over the UK, it was always going to be a true test for them going up against the very best.

The Senior and Under 20 teams were looked after by Jan Westhenry and in the build up to the event, she worked hard to find the best athletes she could who were available to make the trip.

Some of places for the Dorset squad were determined by performances in the Dorset County Championships, so she already had some names down on the list for each age group off the back of those results.

Bournemouth AC junior development coach Simon Hearn was on hand to take on the role of team manager for the juniors, so he had to find the best runners he could from each different age category who were able to make the journey.

It was a task that Simon had no hesitation in stepping up to. He manages the junior teams for BAC in both the Hampshire and Wessex League cross countries so he was the perfect man to fulfil that position for the county.

Simon is a very accomplished coach and has a great relationship with the kids he looks after at BAC. He also has a good knack of getting the best out of them, both in training and in races.

The first Bournemouth AC member to run for Dorset on the day was Erin Wells who competed in the Under 13 Girls race. After finishing 27th in the National Cross Country Championships and 9th in the South West Inter County Championships, Erin is fast becoming one of BAC’s top rising stars. This was a great opportunity for her to showcase her ability on the UK county stage.

Erin Wells in the Unsder 13 Girls race at the UK Inter Counties XC
Erin Wells was competing in the Under 13 Girls race

She certainly didn’t disappoint in the respect and crossed the line as Dorset’s highest finisher in a team of eight runners. Her time for the 3k distance of 15:40 put her in 77th position overall out of 306 runners.

Considering she was facing some of the best young girls in the UK, that was a fantastic result for Erin. She spearheaded to Dorset team to a 34th place finish out of the 40 counties who scored.

After that it was the turn of the Senior Women, who knew that for this particular event, they had to run the same distance as the Senior Men, which is rare in cross country fixtures.

That meant seven miles of one on the most brutal cross country routes out there, with some sections so muddy that wellies would have probably been a more appropriate choice of footwear.

Nikki and Harriet in Dorset Senior Women's team
The Dorset Senior Women’s team pose for a photo before the games begin

Unfortunately for the Senior Women, only four of them had turned up and six were required for a team, so they knew they wouldn’t be scoring in the team competition.

For those who were there, it was just a case of trying to do the best they could and finish as high up as they could in a fiercely competitive field that was absolutely brimming with talent.

As Dorset County Champion, Harriet Slade was first out of the traps as they lined up in single file alongside all the other counties. Behind her it was Alex Door, who was second in the County Championship and had also finished as Dorset Road Race League champion for the 2019 season.

Harriet Slade on start line for Senior Women's race
Harriet lines up on the start line alongside all the top Senior Women from each county

They were backed up by Nikki Sandell who had received a late call up to the squad and Sarah Swift who had qualified by virtue of her performance in the County Championships.

None of the Dorset ladies came out of it feeling like they’d had a great run and they all suffered a fair bit on such difficult ground. It wasn’t the kind of race many people come out of thinking “Yeah, I’ve smashed that” though. It was more one where you get your head down and grind it out as best you can.

Nikki Sandell in UK Inter Counties Cross Country
Nikki comes round the corner on her first lap
Harriet Slade in UK Inter Counties Cross Country
Harriet was going well in the early stages of the race but there was still a long way to go

For much of the initial part of the race, Alex and Harriet were quite close to each other but towards the end of the first lap Alex began to pull away.

Completing the course in a time of 55:17, Alex took the accolade of being first Dorset runner home. She came in in 190th position out of 257 which, given the high standard of competitors she was up against, was a pretty good result.

Nikki Sandell in action in UK Inter Counties Cross Country
Nikki offers up a half grin, half grimace, as she goes past
Harriet Slade in action in UK Inter Counties Cross Country
Although she was suffering, Harriet kept pushing all the way round

Crossing the line just 23 seconds after Alex, Harriet took 196th place with her time of 55:40. Even though she found it really tough out there, she’d come out of it in a creditable position considering the level of opposition.

Although she was by no means at her fittest and at her strongest following a very lengthy lay-off through injury, Nikki dug in and gave it all she’s got, finishing in 238th place with a time of 59:16.

Sarah was probably one of the few women who actually looked like she was enjoying herself out there, or almost enjoying it at least! She always seems to go round with a smile on her face, regardless of how tough the conditions are. Arriving at the finish in a time of 1:00:56, Sarah came in in 244th position.

Backs of Dorset Senior Women's team
Despite the extremity of the mud and lengthy course, the Dorset senior women did their county proud

In the Under 17 Men‘s race, Oliver James turned in a magnificent performance to get over the line in 82nd place overall in a time of 23:13 for the 6k course. He was the top Dorset team member out of the seven in the race.

Oliver James in the Uner 17 Men's race at the UK Inter Counties XC
Oliver James delivered a superb performance in the Under 17 Men’s race to take 82nd place

Jasper Todd didn’t look out of place either despite the high quality of opposition. Finishing as the sixth placed Dorset runner out of seven, Jasper registered a time of 27:16 for the 6k course. That put him in 251st place out of the 265 finishers in the category.

Jasper Todd in the Uner 17 Men's race at the UK Inter Counties XC
Jasper Todd on his way to a scoring position for the Dorset Under 17 Men

Oliver and Jasper’s contributions to the Dorset cause helped them finish in 35th place out of 39 scoring counties in the Under 17 Men’s team competition.

Next to go it was the Under 13 Boys and in that race, Bournemouth AC star Oscar Ewen Matthews was the standout performer for Dorset. He did incredibly well to finish in 42nd place, clocking a time of 14:16 for the 3k distance. And that was out of 293 of the UK’s finest at that age.

Stanley Peters ran well as well to finish as fourth scorer for Dorset, crossing the line in a time of 15:28, which put him in 196th place. The Bournemouth AC pair helped Dorset to a 29th place finish out of the 40 counties that scored.

Stanley Peters in the Under 13 Boys race at the UK Inter Counties XC
Stanley Peters featured in the Under 13 Boys race

For the Under 15 Girls, it was Neve East who stole the show from a Dorset perspective. She was a highest finisher for the county, getting over the line in a time of 18:40, which is pretty impressive for a 4k route over such tough terrain.

That put Neve in 69th position in the overall standings in a field of 295 finishers. It was a truly magnificent performance from a BAC girl who is beginning to show some great potential.

Neve East in the Under 15 Girls race at the UK Inter Counties XC
Neve East ran well to record a 69th place finish in the Under 15 Girls race

Her BAC teammate and now county compatriot as well, Martha Preece, also put in a decent display to cross the line in a time of 21:24. That put her in 252nd position overall and made her fourth scorer out of the seven Dorset runners.

In the Under 15 Girls team competition, with the help of Neve and Martha, Dorset finished 33rd out of the 40 counties that fielded a scoring team.

Martha Preece in the Under 15 Girls race at the UK Inter Counties XC
Martha Preece was fourth quickest Dorset runner in the Under 15 Girls race

Last to go, but by no means least, it was the Senior Men. After his impressive performance in the Vitality Big Half the previous weekend, Tag decided to opt out of UK Inter Counties in the end so Rich Brawn was only Bournemouth AC man in the squad.

Fortunately, the men still had six Dorset representatives so provided they all finished, they would at least get a place on the team scoreboard.

The Dorset squad was bolstered by the inclusion of Tom Austin who runs for Poole AC. Tom had finished second in the recent Hampshire League Cross Country fixture at Prospect Park and had gone on to register 18th place in the Southern Cross Country Championships at Parliament Hill. He, therefore, came with great pedigree.

Having won the County Championships, Jamie Grose, also of Poole AC, had rightfully earned his place in the line up. He was joined by Fergus Johnson who had run the Vitality Big Half in 1:14:40 the previous weekend and was looking in great form.

Just as Rich had, Graham Sherwin and Bruce Campbell, who both run for Egdon Heath Harriers, had also qualified for the team off the back of their performances in the County Championships.

Whilst he’d been cheering on the Dorset ladies in the Senior Women’s race, Rich had also spotted Sian Thomas, who runs for City of Salisbury and was representing Wiltshire. She had mentioned to him during the race that she’d had to stop as her shoe had come off.

After the race Sian came over the Dorset tent and they were chatting and having a bit of a laugh about it. Rich had no idea then what was about to befall him in his race.

Because they’d heard a lot of people had been having trouble with their shoes coming off, most the Dorset guys set about putting tape around their spikes to ensure that didn’t happen to them.

Just before they got in the traps ready to start the race, Rich noticed that the tape on one of his shoes was already coming loose. That was a bit of a worry since he hadn’t even set off yet!

As the race started, the competitors surged down the opening straight and as they got to the first corner, it was quite a sharp bend creating a bottleneck. Rich got caught up in that and had to slow right down.

By that point a large proportion of the field had already got away and that was the beginning of a sequence of disastrous occurences for Rich.

Once they got to the deep, thick mud section, Rich could feel himself sinking in with every step he took. As he tried to lift his foot out, he could feel it getting stuck into the slop.

Rich soldiers on in the UK Inter Counties Cross Country
The mud was thick and like superglue but Rich Brawn had no choice but to go straight through it

It wasn’t long before his shoe completely came off and he had to stop and try to put it back on again. It was gutting for Rich as he lost a fair bit of time trying to get the shoe back on. He was already fairly near the back of the field by that point though, such was the high standard of competitors he was up against.

He got back going again though and set about chasing Bruce who had gone past him whilst he was putting his shoe back on. He managed to get back in front of Bruce but then again, his shoe came off and he had to once again stop to put it back on.

Rich and Bruce in the UK Inter Counties XC
Rich ran with his Dorset teammate Bruce Campbell for a substantial part of the race

It was a devastating blow for Rich and he began to realise that this was probably going to continually happen throughout the race. The thought of that filled him with dread, but there was nothing else he could really do but pick himself up and go again.

Once again, he set about trying to catch Bruce and low and behold, as soon as they hit another section of the sticky mud, his shoe came loose for a third time.

He took it to the side of the course and thought about whether to try tying the laces up again but his hands were so muddy and there was so much mud on his shoe, he couldn’t really do it. He just about managed to get the shoe back on and was off on his way for a third time.

Rich and Bruce Campbell in the UK Inter Counties XC
Rich and Bruce race through the field in a bid not become the backmarkers of the race

Fortunately they were now passed the muddiest sections on the lap, but Rich was aware it was a two-lap course so he knew he’d have to face those same difficulties all over again. This time he said to himself, if it happens again, he’s just going to take the shoe off and run in his sock.

Of course, once he got round to the really muddy section, it wasn’t long before his shoe was off again. This time he did just take it off, put it on his hand and carry on running, with just one shoe on. After that it became a lot easier as he didn’t have to worry about his shoe coming off all the time and he was able to pick up the pace a bit.

For the remaining three miles of the race, Rich continued with only one shoe. He actually ran a lot better after and found it fairly smooth sailing. The only bit that contravened that was a short section  through a woodland path that had some stones and flints on the ground.

Rich Brawn heads through the mud in Senior Men's race
This iconic image of Rich ploughing through the mud with his shoe in his hand pretty much summed up his race

That bit was a tad painful with no shoe on. But he persevered and made it to the finish, even managing to claw back a few places over those last few miles.

Meanwhile, much closer to the front of the field, it was Tom Austin who proved to be the star man for Dorset. He finished in 31st place with a time of 40:37, which was a magnificent result in such a high class field. To run 7 miles that quickly on that sort of terrain was an incredibly impressive effort.

The next man in for the green army was Jamie Grose who came in in 186th place, clocking a time of 45:17. An athlete of his standard finishing so far down the field says a lot about the level of competition out there.

Weighing in with an excellent performance, Graham Sherwin was the third Dorset man home, crossing the line in 46:36 which put him in 224th place. Then it was Fergus Johnson arriving at the finish next. He took 271st place with a time of 48:40.

For Rich and Bruce, it was a very sobering experience as they found themselves near the back of the field. That was something they were not really used to.

Completing the course in a time of 49:19, Rich was languishing down in 281st place, with Bruce reaching the line shortly after to register 284th place in a time of 49:42. There were 294 men who finished the race in total.

Dorset Senior Men's team at UK Inter Counties Cross Country
Rich Brawn (right) with Fergus Johnson (left), Graham Sherwin (4141) and Bruce Campbell (4136)

Bruce didn’t let the race effect his confidence though and hammered out a huge PB of 1:17:28 the following weekend at the Bath Half Marathon. Again, the fact that a runner of his calibre could finish up where did in UK Inter Counties underlines the quality of the field.

Since all six of the Dorset representatives finished, they did feature on the team scoreboard, taking 30th place out the 31 counties who scored.

Backs of Senior Men's team at UK Inter Counties XC
It was a tough race and hadn’t gone entirely to plan but the Dorset men had given it their best shot

It was an event that certainly brought about mixed fortunes for the Dorset possie. Some will look back on it with fond memories and others will probably still be having nightmares about for years to come. But one thing they’ll all have in common is that they’ll all be able say, it was a character building experience!

Dorset Senior Women's team before UK Inter Counties XC race
There was a great team spirit and comradery around the Dorset camp and that was certainly a highlight of the weekend

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BAC trio feature in National Cross Country Champs

Erin Wells makes a splash in the National Cross Country Championships
Erin Wells was looking to make a splash as she represented Bournemouth AC at the National Cross Country Championships along with Mariah Marshall and Annette Lewis

Following all the storms that had battered the UK from pillar to post and the persistent rainfall that followed for weeks on end, when the day of the National Cross Country Championships came round it was inevitable the participants would have some testing conditions to deal with.

The venue for this year’s event was Wollaton Park in Nottingham and unsurprisingly it turned out to be one of the muddiest Nationals on record. As if that wasn’t hard enough, the high winds on the day made it even challenging for those who took part. It was certainly a stark contrast to the idyllic weather they had in Leeds last year.

Of course, being in Nottingham, it wasn’t the easiest place to get to for those living in Bournemouth so only a few Bournemouth AC members made the trip up. They were Annette Lewis, who was competing in the Senior Women‘s race and Erin Wells and Mariah Marshall who were both in action in the Under 13 Girls race.

With it being the National Cross Country Championships, as one would expect, the level of competition was extremely high and the event still remains a popular attraction for the nation’s elite cross country runners of all age groups.

That meant that the BAC representatives would surely have to be on top of the their game to avoid finding themselves battling towards the back end of the field.

Erin Wells had absolutely no intention of letting that happen though and she certainly possessed the talent to be fighting for positions much further up the standings.

It’s been a tremendous season for Erin on the cross country circuit. She finished sixth in the Under 13 Girls Individual Aggregrates in the Hampshire Cross Country League which, considering the standard of opposition, was a terrific result.

At the conclusion of the Wessex League Cross Country season Erin finished in second place in the aggregate standings for the Under 13 Girls which was again, a very impressive performance.

It’s certainly clear that she enjoys her cross country running and Erin competed in all the major events this season. She finished 30th in the Southern Championships at Parliament Hill and ninth in the South West Inter Counties in Yeovil. She also finished second in the Dorset County Schools’ Championship and sixth in the South West Schools’ Championships.

This was the Nationals though and there would be an inevitable step up in class in comparison to those other events that she’d had so much success in.

As for Mariah Marshall, she’d had a pretty good season as well on the cross country circuit. She finished in 18th place on aggregate in the Wessex League and was 71st at the South West Inter County Championships.

She also registered 40th place in the Hampshire County Championships and 72nd in the Dorset County Schools’ Championships.

Again though, competing at the Nationals would be a higher level of competition for her though so it was going to be interesting to see how she coped in that situation.

The course Erin and Mariah had to face was 3.7 kilometres in length and including some almost swamp like muddy water sections that they had to splash through, as well as plenty of extremely difficult sections of mud.

Mariah Marshall strides through the mud in the National Cross Country Championships
Mariah Marshall strides through the mud in the Under 13 Girls race
Erin Wells looking focused in the National Cross Country Championships
Erin was also in action in the Under 13 Girls race wearing her trademark pink socks
Mariah Marshall in the Under 13 Girls race
Mariah gives her all as she progresses through the 3.7km course
Erin Wells jostling for position in the Under 13 Girls race
Erin jostles for position with some top level opposition
Mariah Marshall goes through the swamp in the National Cross Country Championships
Mariah negotiates the muddy water section

As she has done throughout all her cross country races this season though, Erin ran well and put in a performance to be proud of. Completing the course in a time of 16:28, she was 27th fastest on the day, which was a fantastic result, out of 358 finishers.

Coming in in 314th place, Mariah crossed the line in a time of 20:58. That was a decent run from Mariah and considering the standard of opposition she was up against, it was a very good effort.

Erin Wells in the National Cross Country Championships
Erin remains focused and strong despite the challenging conditions
Mariah Marshall give it all she's got in the National Cross Country Championships
Mariah put in a good performance to hold her own against some of the very best
Erin Wells powers along in the National Cross Country Championships
Erin had an amazing run, finishing 27th out of 358 in the Under 13 Girls race
Mariah Marshall in action in the National Cross Country Championships
Mariah took a creditable 314th place clocking a time of 20:58

Of course, flying the flag for Bournemouth AC in the Senior Women’s race it was Annette Lewis. Annette loves her cross countries and barely misses any of the big races. She came 77th overall in the aggregate standings in the Hampshire League after completing four out of the five fixtures for the season.

She came 84th in the South West Inter Counties Championships at Yeovil and was 18th in the age category. She was also the Southern Cross Country Champs as well where she finished 650th in an extremly high standard field.

The course for the Senior Women‘s race at the Nationals was 9 kilometres long and again, Annette had to tackle the waterlogged, swampy sections as well as the deep, thick muddy stretches. There were even some huge logs from fallen trees strewn across the pathway that she had to negotiate.

Annette loves all that though. It’s all part of the fun and she never shirks a challenging course or high quality opposition. She just goes out there and gives her all.

Annette Lewis battles through the mud in the National Cross Country Championships
Annette Lewis was competing in the Senior Women’s race
Annette Lewis goes through the mire in the National Cross Country Championships
Annette splashes through the swamp like water section

Needless to say, Annette did of course manage to successfully negotiate the course, despite all the hurdles put in front of her and crossed the line in a time of 1:08:09. That put her in 880th place in the standings.

As well as the usual difficulties that all runners are faced with on tough cross country courses like this, Annette also suffers from asthma, which makes it even harder for her.

Annette Lewis jumps over a log in the National Cross Country Championships
Annette overcame all the hurdles to log a time of 1:08:09 which put her in 880th place

Whenever she finishes a race, the first thing she does is reach for her inhaler and only then does she have the chance to catch her breath again and recuperate.

For her, it is not just a race against her fellow competitors, it is also very much a personal battle against asthma, which she endeavours to win every time.

Annette Lewis after the National Cross Country Championships
The Nationals marked the end of a very enjoyable cross country season for Annette

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

County XC Champs, Inter Counties and Wessex and Hants XC League roundup

Dorset senior women's team for the South West Inter Counties
The Dorset senior women’s team line up for their race in the South West Inter Counties match at Aldon Hill, Yeovil

The Dorset County Cross Country Championships were combined with the Wessex Cross Country League fixture at Canford School on Sunday 15 December 2019, and it is pleasing to report that BAC athletes won no fewer than 4 gold medals and 3 silver medals. Many congratulations to BAC‘s Dorset County Champions Harriet Slade (Senior Women), Jasper Todd (U17 Men), Neve East (U15 Girls) and Oscar Ewen Matthews (U11 Boys). Congratulations also to BAC‘s silver medallists – Richard Brawn (Veteran Men) and Erin Wells (U13 Girls).

Harriet Slade and Holly Collier at the Wessex League XC at Canford School
Harriet Slade finished as Dorset County Champion and Holly Collier won the Wessex Cross Country League fixture at Canford School

On 5 January 2020, at Yeovil, the South West Regional Inter Counties competition took place and BAC athletes formed part of Dorset teams, one winning and earning its members a gold medal, and two finishing third and earning bronze medals. Teams consisted of 4 athletes and Dorset was competing against Avon, Cornwall, Devon, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire.

Dorset senior women's team at the South West Inter Counties
Ladies from various clubs around Dorset came together to provide a great display of unity at the South West Inter Counties Cross Country
Rich Brawn representing Dorset at the South West XC Champs
After competing in the same event last year, Rich Brawn was proud to be back in back in Dorset green
Heidi Treganza in the South West Cross Country Champs
Former Bournemouth AC member Heidi Treganza won the South West Championship for the second year running
Kirsty Drewett in the South West Cross Country Champs
Kirsty Drewett was part of the Dorset squad in the women’s race at the South West Inter Counties

In the U15 Boys race, Louie Todd was part of the winning Dorset team, whilst Erin Wells was part of the third placed U13 Girls Dorset team and Neve East and Martha Preece together formed half of the third placed U15 Girls Dorset team. Many congratulations to BAC‘s Inter Counties Dorset medallists!

Louie Todd in the South West XC Champs
Louie Todd
Erin Wells in the South West XC Champs
Erin Wells
Neve East in the South West XC Champs
Neve East
Martha Preece in the South West XC Champs
Martha Preece

As already mentioned, the fixture on 15 December 2019 was, as well as the County Championships, the third fixture of the Wessex Cross Country League. More than 30 BAC athletes (including 10 U13 Boys) competed, and there were some excellent performances. Particularly noteworthy runs came from William Launder (4th U11 Boy) Esmee Hurst Atkins, Katie Kilburn and Isabel Cherrett (1st, 2nd and 5th U11 Girls respectively) Oscar Ewen Matthews (2nd U13 Boy) Richard Brawn and Brandon Meredith (9th and 11th Senior Men respectively) Erin Wells (2nd U13 Girl) Neve East and Martha Preece (2nd and 4th U15 Girls respectively) and Jasper Todd and Oliver James (2nd and 9th U17 Men) with Tom Farwell completing the U17 Men’s BAC team not far behind Oliver.

For the second consecutive time in the Wessex League, Holly Collier won the Senior Women’s race. She hadn’t entered the County Championships though so the honor of becoming Dorset County Champion went to her BAC teammate Harriet Slade who finished 2nd in the race.

Isabel Cherrett and Esmee Hurst Atkins at the South West XC Champs
Isabel Cherrett and Esmee Hurst Atkins

At the conclusion of this fixture, the third in the Wessex Cross Country League season, BAC athletes occupied some of the top aggregate positions for the season – William Launder 3rd U11 Boy, Esmee Hurst Atkins 1st U11 Girl, Isabel Cherrett 2nd U11 Girl, Oscar Ewen Matthews 2nd U13 Boy BAC‘s U13 Boys’ team was 2nd on the day), Richard Brawn 1st Senior Man, Erin Wells 2nd U13 Girl (BAC’s U13 Girls’ team was 3rd on the day), Neve East 1st U15 Girl and Martha Preece 3rd U15 Girl.

Rich Brawn at the South West XC Champs
Rich Brawn finished as 1st Senior Male for the season in the Wessex Cross Country League

Results (BAC) Wessex Cross Country League, Canford School, 15 December 2019: U11B: 4. William Launder 5.06; U11G: 1. Esmee Hurst Atkins 5.23, 2. Katie Kilburn 5.26, 5. Isabel Cherrett; U13B: 2. Oscar Ewen Matthews 12.04, 10. Stanley Peters 12.51, 13. Archie Kilburn 13.00, 18. Daniel Couch 13.46, 21. Harry Green 14.50, 22. Ewan Brown 14.56, 23. Sam Brewer 15.02, 27. Isaac Sandell 16.30, 30. Nathan Mearns 17.30, 33. James Ross 20.25; U17W: 10. Anya Sandell 21.09, 12. Ruby Bowden 21.48, 14. Laura Reeves 22.01; S/VM: 9. Richard Brawn 30.23, 11. Brandon Meredith 30.30, 32. Simon Hearn 34.22, 43. Simon Hunt 36.42, 52. Ian Graham 41.37; U13G: 2. Erin Wells 13.24, 18. Imogen Gent 14.55, 20. Emily Coltman 14.58, 22. Mariah Marshall 15.13; U15B: 13. Massinoa Lawson 16.33, 15. Sam Farwell 17.42; U15G: 1. Neve East 16.02, 4. Martha Preece 16.41; U17M: 2. Jasper Todd 15.41, 9. Oliver James 16.45, 16. Tom Farwell 18.00; S/VW: 1. Holly Collier 20.28, 2. Harriet Slade 21.07, 8. Nikki Sandell 24.18, 15. Kirsty Drewett 26.47, 30. Jayne Wade 31.00

Nikki, Harriet and Holly at the Wessex League XC at Canford School
Nikki Sandell (left), Harriet Slade (middle) and Holly Collier (right) at the Wessex Cross Country League fixture at Canford School

The Inter-Counties fixture at Yeovil on 5 January 2020 was also the final fixture of the Wessex Cross Country League. However, as yet, no specific league results have been posted so at the moment it is difficult to determine individual and team places. However there were some excellent runs at Yeovil and it is likely that, for instance, Richard Brawn, Erin Wells, Oscar Ewen Matthews, Neve East, Martha Preece and Oliver James will feature amongst the top athletes. Jasper Todd was going well at Yeovil but unfortunately had to withdraw during the race. Jasper, one of BAC‘s most promising youngsters, went on to win his age category race at the Dorset Schools’ AA Cross Country Championships at Kings Park on Thursday 16 January, so it would appear he has made a speedy recovery!

Daniel Couch and Oscar Ewan Mathews at the South West XC Champs
Daniel Couch and Oscar Ewan Mathews
Oliver James in the South West XC Champs
Oliver James
Rich Brawn running in the South West XC Champs
Rich Brawn

As well as the high scoring BAC teams referred to above BAC‘s senior mens’ team was 2nd aggregate for the season after the 15 December 2019 fixture. However, BAC‘s top scoring man was wearing neither a club nor a county vest and may therefore not count for the team which will dramatically impact the club’s placing at Yeovil. The athlete in question also did not count as part of the Dorset team which meant the Dorset Senior Mens’ team was 5th in the Inter-Counties instead of 4th. There will be a further report, should the final detailed Wessex Cross Country League results be published.

Results (BAC) Wessex Cross Country League, Yeovil, 5 January 2020 (Positions are overall including athletes from all the competing counties): S/VM: 21. Rob McTaggart 29.18, 93. Richard Brawn 33.46, 148. Ian Graham 44.00, 151. Alan Lewis 44.45; S/VW: 71. Kirsty Drewett 29.37, 78. Jayne Wade 33.48, 84. Annette Lewis 44.45; U13G: 9. Erin Wells 13.09, 36. Emily Coltman 14.35; U13B: 15. Oscar Ewen Matthews 12.21, 49. Daniel Couch 13.39; U15G: 8. Neve East 15.12, 29. Martha Preece 16.54; U15B: Louie Todd 21.13; U17W: 36. Lauren East 22.17; U17M: 28. Oliver James 21.14 (Oliver was 1st Dorset athlete); U11G: 8. Esmee Hurst Atkins, 15. Isabel Cherrett.

Jayne Wade and Kirsty Drewett at the South West XC Champs
Jayne Wade and Kirsty Drewett
Emily Coltman in the South West XC Champs
Emily Coltman
Lauren East in the South West XC Champs
Lauren East
Annette Lewis in the South West Cross Country Champs
Annette Lewis
Jayne Wade in the South West Cross Country Champs
Jayne Wade
Kirsty Drewett climbs the hill in the South West Inter Counties Cross Country
Kirsty Drewett

The penultimate fixture of the Hampshire Cross Country League took place at Prospect Park, Reading on Saturday 11 January. There were BAC teams in the Senior and Veteran Mens’, Senior and Veteran Womens’ and U13 Boys’ races, and individual BAC athletes in the U17 Mens’, U17 Womens’ and U15 and U13 Girls’ races. The Senior Mens’ team of Jacek Cieluszecki, Rob McTaggart, Alex Goulding, Stuart Nicholas and Richard Brawn (with Steve Ross providing the vital backup should anything go wrong) were 7th team of 10 on the day, and are also 7th aggregate for the season.

A strong team performance at the final fixture at Popham on 8 February should secure BAC‘s position in Division 1. At this stage of the season Jacek is the leading Veteran Man of the league. One feature of the race at Reading was that, for the first time, Poole AC‘s Senior Mens’ team finished above BAC‘s (they were 5th) and as they lie in 8th aggregate position there is a risk that Poole AC could finish above BAC at the end of the season. Jacek and Alex were joined by Jud Kirk to form BAC‘s Veteran Mens’ team, doing well to finish 7th of 20 teams and are a highly creditable 5th aggregate for the season so far.

Nikki Sandell, Julia Austin and Kirsty Drewett made up BAC‘s Senior and Veteran Ladies’ teams, with Jayne Wade and Annette Lewis (for the Seniors) the essential reserves. As Seniors, the team was 11th of 16 teams on the day and is 10th = aggregate for the season, and, as Veterans, the team was 4th of 10 teams on the day.

Nikki Sandell in the Hants League XC at Prospect Park
Nikki Sandell
Julia Austin in the Hants League XC at Prospect Park
Julia Austin
Kirsty Drewett in the Hants League XC at Prospect Park
Kirsty Drewett

Amongst the younger age categories, there were particularly noteworthy runs from Oliver James, Oscar Ewen Matthews, Neve East and Erin Wells. Oscar, who led an U13 Boys’ team consisting of himself, Sam Brewer and Isaac Sandell, is 5th U13 Boy of the league, and his team were 7th of 9 on the day, 9th of 11 aggregate. Erin is 6th U15 Girl of the league. Lauren East and Anya Sandell made up 2/3 of an U17 Women’s team, and Martha Preece supported Neve to make up 2/3 of an U15 Girls’ team. Hopefully at the next and final fixture these two teams can be complete.

Results (BAC) Hampshire Cross Country League, Reading, 11 January 2020: S/VM: 20. Jacek Cieluszecki 34.19, 35. Rob McTaggart 35.43, 64. Alex Goulding 37.35, 80. Stuart Nicholas 38.49, 88. Richard Brawn 39.20 91. Steve Ross 39.33, 164. Jud Kirk 45.52, 197. Ian Graham 53.22; S/VW: 48. Nikki Sandell 24.43, 69. Julia Austin 25.45, 89. Kirsty Drewett 27.54, 111. Jayne Wade 31.35, 125. Annette Lewis 34.24; U17M: 8. Oliver James 18.58; U13B: 4. Oscar Ewen Matthews 11.08, 45. Sam Brewer 13.51, 52. Isaac Sandell 15.11; U17W: 17. Lauren East 18.36, 18. Anya Sandell 19.29; U15G: 6. Neve East 13.00, 20. Martha Preece 14.07; U13G: 4. Erin Wells 12.03.

Ian Graham in the Hants League XC at Prospect Park
Ian Graham
Jayne Wade in the Hants League XC at Prospect Park
Jayne Wade
Annette Lewis in the Hants League XC at Prospect Park
Annette Lewis

 

BAC team firing on all cylinders at Aldershot in Hants XC

Raluca Basarman in Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Raluca Basarman was part of a six-strong Bournemouth AC senior women’s team in the third Hampshire League Cross Country fixture of the season at Wellesley Woodlands, Aldershot

The third fixture of the 2019/20 Hampshire Cross Country League took place at Wellesley Woodlands, Aldershot, on Saturday 30th November in unusually good weather for this venue, which has in the past thrown up some treacherous conditions.

The last couple of years participant have been greeted with pouring rain and mud everywhere, so much so that everyone was soaking wet and muddy before their races had even started!

This year, thankfully, the rain held off and the surfaces were reasonably firm, so that made what is an enjoyable course anyway, all the more enjoyable. It was basically two laps, much of it through woods and there weren’t too many hills to worry about either.

Bournemouth AC were present in reasonable depth, with 28 athletes and their supporters making the journey to Aldershot. There were some very strong performances amongst them, particularly from the youngsters.

Jasper Todd and Oscar Ewen Matthews ran to their usual high standard, finishing 9th U17M and 6th U13B respectively, as did Holly Collier who was 17th SW, Neve East who was 8th U15G and Erin Wells who was 4th U13G. Having run sufficient earlier races, Jasper is now the 8th of 42 U17M aggregate for the season so far, and Oscar is the 5th of 63 U13B.

BAC‘s senior men are still holding their own in Division 1, as superb runs from Jacek Cieluszecki and Craig Palmer, with strong support from László Tóth, Stuart Nicholas and Jon Matthews meant that the senior men’s team finished the day 7th of 10 teams. That position reflected in the aggregate standings for the season so far.

Jacek Cieluszecki in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Jacek Cieluszecki
Craig Palmer in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Craig Palmer
László Tóth in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
László Tóth
Stu Nicholas in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Stu Nicholas
Jonathan Matthews in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Jon Matthews

However, maintaining Division 1 status isn’t a foregone conclusion. One of the teams in Division 2 and two of the Division 3 teams scored less points than BAC! And of course, in cross country league, the lesser the better.

BAC’s veteran men are, however, in a strong position. The team of Jacek, Jon and Simon Hearn finished 6th of 19 teams on the day and are 5th team aggregate, with Jacek at present the leading veteran man of the league.

Richard Brawn in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Richard Brawn
Simon Hearn in the in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Simon Hearn
Jud Kirk in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Jud Kirk
Alan Lewis in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Alan Lewis
Ian Graham in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Ian Graham

Oscar led the only other male BAC team at Aldershot, the other team members being Samuel Brewer and Nathan Mearns, with Isaac Sandell as back up. The team is currently 10th of 11 teams but it is very encouraging to see a Bournemouth AC team in the U13B category.

Starting line of Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
The ladies wait on the start line for the senior women’s race
Start of Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
And they’re off!

BAC‘s senior and veteran ladies’ teams are both doing well. Holly was joined by Julia Austin and Nikki Sandell to complete a senior ladies’ team which was 9th of 21 on the day and is currently 11th of 22 in the aggregate standings. Julia, Nikki and Kirsty Drewett made up the BAC‘s veteran ladies’ team and they were 7th of 14 complete teams.

Raluca Basarman in full flow at the Hampshire League Cross Country in Aldershot
Raluca Basarman
Holly Collier in action at the Hampshire League Cross Country in Aldershot
Holly Collier
Nikki Sandell in action at the Hampshire League Cross Country in Aldershot
Nikki Sandell
Julia Austin in Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Julia Austin
Kirsty Drewett in action at the Hampshire League Cross Country in Aldershot
Kirsty Drewett

Full results (BAC); SM: 32. Jacek Cieluszecki 34.37, 37. Craig Palmer 35.03, 67. László Tóth 36.33, 78. Stuart Nicholas 37.04, 98. Jon Matthews 38.05, 101. Richard Brawn 38.26, 176. Simon Hearn 42.49, 219. Jud Kirk 44.52, 243. Alan Lewis 49.01, 258. Ian Graham 52.12; U17M: 9, Jasper Todd 22.01, 17. Oliver James 22.55; U15B: 57. Louie Todd 18.53; U13B: 6. Oscar Ewen Matthews 11.20, 51. Samuel Brewer 13.46, 59. Nathan Mearns 14.12, 63. Isaac Sandell 14.31; SW: 17. Holly Collier 24.08, 74. Julia Austin 29.09, 76. Nikki Sandell 29.15, 81. Raluca Basarman 29.55, 114. Kirsty Drewett 31.55, 146. Annette Lewis 36.55; U17W: 22. Anya Sandell 20.01; U15G: 8. Neve East 17.43, 18. Martha Preece 18.23; U13G: 4. Erin Wells 12.24, 26. Imogen Gent 13.57.

Holly Collier in Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Holly Collier
Nikki Sandell in Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Nikki Sandell
Julia Austin in action in the Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Julia Austin
Raluca Basarman in action at the Hampshire League Cross Country in Aldershot
Raluca Basarman
Kirsty Drewett in Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Kirsty Drewett
Annette Howard in Hampshire League Cross Country at Aldershot
Annette Howard

Cross Country season marches on

Ladies team in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
The Bournemouth AC ladies and men’s teams were out in force in the latest Wessex and Hampshire League Cross Country fixtures

The second fixtures of both cross country leagues have now taken place with the Wessex Cross Country League one being held at Lytchett School on 3rd November and the Hampshire Cross Country League one being staged on a new course at Sparshalt College, near Winchester, on 9th November.

Most people will remember Saturday 2nd November. It was the day of the Rugby World Cup final which dawned with high hopes of an England success over South Africa. It was also a day of torrential rain and high winds which resulted in the abandonment of just about every parkrun in the area.

Would the Wessex Cross Country League race go ahead the next day? Well, fortunately, Sunday 3rd November turned out to be a bright sunny day which was ideal for cross country running with plenty of mud, even on a course which consisted mainly of zigzagging up and down a field. It was a course imaginatively worked out and organised by Poole Runners to take place within the confines of the tight area available.

Bournemouth AC‘s youngsters were present in strength, with some excellent results. In the U11 category the BAC stars were William Launder for the boys and Isabel Cherrett and Esmee Hunt Altkins for the girls. William is now 3rd aggregate U11 boy for the season so far, and Isabel and Esmee are 1st and 2nd U11 girls so very well done to them! BAC’s U11 girls’ team now lie 2nd in the aggregate team table.

It is a similar story in the U13 category. Oscar Ewen Matthews was the 2nd U13 boy and occupies 2nd position for the season so far, with the BAC U13 boys’ team leading the competition so far. Such is the depth of BAC’s U13 boys’ involvement that there is also a BAC ‘B’ team in the table.

Erin Wells and Darcy Hawkins were BAC’s U13 girl stars, finishing 3rd and 4th respectively, with the team lying 3rd in the competition, and Erin is 3rd individual U13 girl so far. With our U11 and U13 athletes running so well, together with the depth there now appears to be, there is surely a bright future for BAC’s cross country running.

At the U15 level, many congratulations to Neve East, who won the U15 girls’ race, closely followed by Martha Preece who was an impressive 3rd. Neve, having competed in both fixtures so far, is the leading U15 girl. Anya Sandell, Ruby Bowden and Laura Reeves all ensured BAC has an U17 ladies’ team in the league, which is 3rd on aggregate thus far.

Rich Brawn in action in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Rich Brawn on his way to a 3rd place finish in the senior men’s race at the Wessex League XC
Men's team after the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Simon Hunt, Rich Nelson, Rich Brawn and Chris O’Brien after the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Men all muddy after Wessex League XC race at Lytchett School
With some thick, gloopy mud in one of the fields it felt like a proper cross country race

BAC’s teams are also doing well at the senior level. Richard Brawn, who was the first senior man to cross the line at Lytchett (he allowed a couple of U20 men to precede him!), is now the leading senior man for the season so far, and helped by Jonathan Matthews, who was 9th at Lytchett, BAC’s senior mens’ team is now 2nd overall.

Holly Collier in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Holly Collier was flying in the Wessex League fixture at Lytchett School
Lisa Elmore in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Lisa Elmore was also going well in the Wessex League race
Raluca Basarman in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Raluca Basarman was taking on her 2nd Wessex League race of the season
Kirsty Drewett in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Kirsty Drewett wasn’t hard to spot in her high-viz BAC top
Jayne Wade in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
The club’s resident brownie baker Jayne Wade was also in action at the Wessex League XC

Not to be outdone, the BAC’s ladies’ team is now 1st! Holly Collier won the ladies’ race at Lytchett, with Lisa Elmore coming in 3rd. Having competed in both fixtures, Lisa is 2nd lady in the aggregate table for the season so far. Well done to all the 35 BAC athletes who competed at Lytchett. The next fixture is on 15th December at Canford School. Please see below for the full BAC results.

Lisa Elmore finishing the Wessex League XC race at Lytchett School
Lisa looked in good form as she tore round the course
Raluca Basarman in action in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Raluca was clearly enjoying herself as she made her way round the school field

BAC’s senior mens’ team in the Hampshire Cross Country League are keeping the club flying in Division 1 – but only just. The new course at Sparshalt College, set up by Winchester & District Athletic Club, proved to be a genuine cross country course, with plenty of mud, glorious mud, some hills just when you didn’t want them, countryside, and just two long laps. Most people, as they left, expressed the hope that this could become a permanent course.

BAC’s senior mens’ team finished in 7th position (of 10) in Division 1, with 283 points. But the warning signs are there. The top team in Division 2 scored just 2 more points, and the top two teams in Division 3 would now be above BAC were they in Division 1, scoring 156 and 284 points respectively. So we cannot afford to relax! BAC still has a veteran mens’ team in the competition, at present lying 17th of 24 teams.

Particular mention must be made of Henry Bramwell-Reeks who, having competed in both Hampshire Cross Country League fixtures so far, is 8th U20 man so far. BAC’s senior ladies were impressively led home by Holly Collier, with the team 16th of 26 teams. Unfortunately, there has not been a BAC veteran ladies’ team in either fixture so far, so fall out of the competition.

Martha Preece in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Martha Preece makes her way round the Sparsholt College course in the teeming rain
Louie Todd in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Louie Todd pushes on through the wet weather in the Under 15 Boys race in Hampshire League Cross Country
Erin Wells in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Erin Wells featured in the Under 13 Girls race wearing her trademark pink socks
Imogen Gent in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Imogen Gent was also in action for Bournemouth AC in the Under 13 Girls race
Oscar Ewan Matthews in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Oscar Ewan Matthews represented the club in the Under 13 Boys race
Sam Brewer and Nathan Mearns in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Sam Brewer (left) and Nathan Mearns (right) were competing in the Under 13 Boys race at Sparsholt College

In the younger categories, Jasper Todd was the 6th U17 man, and lies 7th U17 man aggregate for the season so far. Martha Preece featured in the top echelons of the U15 girls’ race as did Erin Wells in the U13 girls’ race and Oscar Ewen Matthews in the U13 boys’ race. Oscar, having competed in both fixtures is 8th U13 boy so far, and it is pleasing to report that BAC has an U13 boys’ team in this league, currently lying 9th (of 14). Well done to all of the 22 BAC athletes who competed at Sparshalt College. Perhaps there will be a few more to the next fixture at Aldershot on 30th November. Please see below for full BAC results.

Martha Preece taking on the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Martha battles a Winchester local girl
Oscar Ewan Matthews racing in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Oscar ran well and was quite well up the field in his race
Isaac Sandell in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Isaac Sandell was out there giving his all in the Under 13 Boys race
Sam Brewer in action in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Sam pushes hard in the treacherous conditions

Full results (BAC) Wessex Cross Country League, Lytchett School, 3 November. Senior Men: 3. Richard Brawn 33.17, 9. Jonathan Matthews 34.11, 24. Chris O’Brien 36.58, 39. Simon Hunt 40.49, 40. Richard Nelson 41.22, 49. Ian Graham 46.58; Senior Women: 1. Holly Collier 26.00, 3. Lisa Elmore 28.25, 15. Raluca Basarman 31.39, 22. Kirsty Drewett 33.51, 39. Jayne Wade 39.06; U17W: 7. Anya Sandell 20.15, 8. Ruby Bowden 20.22, 9. Laura Reeves 22.09; U15B: 15. Massinoa Lawson 14.11; U15G: 1. Neve East 13.21, 3. Martha Preece 14.08; U13B: 2. Oscar Ewen Matthews 10.29, 17. Daniel Couch 12.08, 19. Harry Green 12.33, 20. Ewan Brown 12.45, 24. Samuel Brewer 13.20, 25. Nathan Mearns 13.49, 29. Isaac Sandell 14.56; U13G: 3. Erin Wells 11.32, 4. Darcy Hawkins 11.42, 19. Emily Hawkins 12.51, 23. Imogen Gent 13.14, 27. Mariah Marshall 13.42; U11B: 5. William Launder 8.23; U11G: 2. Isabel Cherrett 8.59, 3. Esmee Hurst Atkins 9.04, 11. Clodagh O’Brien 9.36, 12. Albha O’Brien 9.41, 18. Amy Betts 10.01.

Lisa Elmore finishing the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Lisa comes in for an excellent 3rd place finish in the Wessex League race
Raluca Basarman finishing the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Raluca heads into the finish to take 15th place in the senior women’s race
Jayne Wade finishes the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Jayne makes her way down the funnel after completing her run in the Wessex League XC
Holly, Raluca and Lisa in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
Holly (left) Raluca (centre) and Lisa (right) were the top three BAC finishers in the senior women’s race
Ladies got muddy at the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
The muddy conditions at Lytchett School didn’t throw the ladies’ team off their stride in the Wessex League XC

Full results (BAC) Hampshire Cross Country League, Sparshalt College, 9 November. Senior Men: 55. Craig Palmer 34.56, 58. Rob McTaggart 35.07, 77. Henry Bramwell-Reeks 36.02, 93. Stuart Nicholas 37.08, 109. Richard Brawn 37.48, 191. Simon Hearn 42.11, 206. Jud Kirk 42.42, 278. Ian Graham 50.18; Senior Women: 28. Holly Collier 27.12, 99. Raluca Basarman 33.51, 190. Annette Lewis 41.52; U17M: 6. Jasper Todd 23.42, 22. Callum Olden 25.43; U17W: 29. Anya Sandell 19.38; U15B: 48. Louie Todd 16.52; U15G: 17. Martha Preece 16.24; U13B: 6. Oscar Ewen Matthews 11.04, 65. Samuel Brewer 13.52, 66. Nathan Mearns 13.56, 78. Isaac Sandell 14.45; U13G: 6. Erin Wells 12.12, 56. Imogen Gent 14.00.

Martha Preece in action in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Martha works her way toward a 17th place finish in the Under 15 Girls race at the Hampshire League XC
Louie Todd in action at the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Louie finished 48th in the Under 15 Boys race
Erin Wells in action in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Erin comes in for an excellent 6th place finish in the Under 13 Girls race
Oscar Ewan Matthews in action in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Oscar strides toward a superb 6th place finish in the Under 13 Boys race
Sam Brewer in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Sam finished in 65th place in the Under 13 Boys race
Nathan Mearns in the Hampshire League XC at Sparsholt College
Nathan crossed the line just after Sam to take 66th place in the Under 13 Boys race
Men's team in the Wessex League XC at Lytchett School
The BAC men’s team had a good day out at the Wessex League XC and enjoyed testing themselves on the muddy surfaces

Cross country season gets underway

Bournemouth AC team for the Wessex League Cross Country
The Bournemouth AC senior team arrived at Canford Heath for the Wessex League Cross Country fixture small in numbers but big in enthusiasm

The 2019/20 cross country season started with the first Wessex Cross Country League fixture at Canford Heath on 29 September, and continued with the start of the Hampshire Cross Country League at Kings Park on 12 October.

The Wessex Cross Country League continues to grow, having revived from almost disappearing a few years ago, and Bournemouth AC‘s participation also grows, particularly amongst the youngsters. The were some excellent performances from BAC athletes, including wins by valuable new signing Lisa Elmore (SW), Jasper Todd (U17M), Neve East (U15G), with other notable runs from Ed Porter (another valuable new signing) and Richard Brawn, 3rd and 7th SM respectively, James Oliver, 7th U13B, Martha Preece, 4th U15G, Erin Wells, 4th U13G, Oscar Ewen Matthews and Oliver Hill, 2nd and 7th U13B respectively, Isobel Cherrett and Esmee Hurst Atkins, 2nd and 3rd U11G respectively and William Launder, 4th U11B. In all, 314 athletes competed at Canford Heath, and congratualtions and well done to each and every one of the 29 BAC athletes included in that total. Please see below for the full BAC results. The next fixture is on 3rd November at Lytchett School.

Rich Brawn in the Wessex League Cross Country
Rich Brawn was taking on his first ever Wessex League Cross Country race
Raluca Basarman in Wessex League Cross Country
Raluca Basarman was looking to make an impression in her first ever Wessex League Cross Country fixture
Ed Porter and Rich Brawn in the Wessex League Cross Country
Ed Porter and Rich Brawn were both up in the lead group in the early stages of the race

For the 8th year in a row, BAC hosted a fixture of the Hampshire Cross Country League at Kings Park, this year the opening fixture of the season on 12 October. First of all, a huge thank you to everyone who turned out to help, marshal, time-keep, issue finishing tickets and do all the other jobs which are needed to enable the fixture to take place. No athletic fixture takes place by someone clicking their fingers and everything is there! It rained most of the day making the efforts of the volunteers even more noteworthy. 838 athletes (for some reason – the rain perhaps – over 100 fewer than last year) competed in 10 separate races throughout the day, 41 of whom proudly wearing the BAC vest.

Having said that, it was perhaps a little disappointing that BAC‘s senior men were unable to take full advantage of the home fixture as they didn’t have their strongest team out. Nevertheless, well done to Jacek Cieluszecki, Henry Bramwell-Reeks, Alex Goulding, Steve Ross (another valuable re-signing) and Richard Brawn who scored 283 points to ensure a reasonably secure mid-table placing in Division 1 (6th out of 10), comfortably ahead of the top team of Division 2.

Rich Brawn in the Hampshire League Cross Country
It had been raining all day so conditions were tricky for Rich Brawn and the other senior men in the Hampshire League Cross Country
Alex Goulding in the Hampshire League Cross Country
Alex Goulding was put off cross country after the Kings Park fixture last year but has vowed to give it a proper go this time round

Plaudits also go to Jacek, Alex and Simon Hearn, who secured an excellent 4th of 21 veteran men’s teams. The senior ladies’ team of Holly Collier, Lisa Elmore and Raluca Basarman can be pleased with their 9th placing of 21 senior ladies’ teams. Unfortunately, only two of our ladies were veterans, not enough to make up a veteran ladies’ team. BAC also fielded complete teams in the U17 men, in which Jasper Todd, Oliver James and Callum Olden ran very well to secure a 3rd position of 7 teams, and the U13 boys, the BAC team of Stanley Peters, Archie Kilburn and Will Bradfield brought the team in 8th of 12. Other notable performances came from Erin Wells, 6th of 61 U13 girls, Isobel Cherrett, Esmee Hurst Atkins and Katie Kilburn, 6th, 10th and 14th respectively of 41 U11 girls, and Isaac Jose, William Launder and Charlie Peters, 11th, 13th and 19th respectively of 62 U11 boys. There are no team results for the U11 races, which are organised by BAC separately from the league. Please see below for the full BAC results. The next fixture is on 9th November at Sparsholt College, Winchester.

Raluca Basarman in the Hampshire League Cross Country
Raluca comes round on her first big lap of the Kings Park course
Rich Brawn makes headway in the Hampshire League Cross Country
Rich wasn’t in the best of form but still came in as fifth scorer for the team

Wessex Cross Country League, Canford Heath, 29 September results (BAC): Senior Men: 3. Ed Porter 29.06, 7. Richard Brawn 30.58, 45. Ian Graham 40.20; Senior Women: 1. Lisa Elmore 26.20, 17. Raluca Basarman 29.59, 35. Jayne Wade 36.00; U17M: 1. Jasper Todd 14.03, 7. James Oliver 15.22; U17W: 8. Anya Sandell 19.07, 11. Laura Reeves 21.14, 12. Ruby Bowden 21.23; U15G: 1. Neve East 15.10, 4. Martha Preece 15.48, 18. Abigail Phillips 18.41, 21. Emily Stonier 22.41; U13B: 2. Oscar Ewen Matthews 11.56, 7. Oliver Hill 12.42, 12. Will Bradfield 13.15, 13. Archie Kilburn 13.18, 15. Daniel Couch, 13.27, 22. Samuel Brewer 15.20, 25. Isaac Sandell 15.33; U13G: 4. Erin Wells 13.32, 13. Imogen Gent 14.45, 17. Emily Coltman 14.56; U11B: 4. William Launder 9.11; U11G: 2. Isobel Cherrett 9.50, 3. Esmee Hurst Atkins 9.51, 36. Olivia Urbanek 12.51.

Rich Brawn in action in the Wessex League Cross Country
Rich is on his way toward a 7th place finish in the Wessex League fixture
Raluca Basarman in action at the Wessex League Cross Country
Raluca went on to finish as third scorer for the senior women’s team

Hampshire Cross Country League, Kings Park, 12 October results (BAC): Senior Men: 19. Jacek Cieluszecki 33.11, 38. Henry Bramwell-Reeks 34.26, 67. Alex Goulding 36.03, 75. Steve Ross 36.17, 84. Richard Brawn 37.13, 94. Mat Du Cros 38.02, 132. Simon Hearn 39.49, 172. Jud Kirk 42.41, 188. Ryan Ford 44.15; Senior Women: 16. Holly Collier 23.14, 53. Lisa Elmore 25.05, 98. Raluca Basarman 29.06, 144. Steph Palmer 31.02, 170. Jayne Wade 36.06; U17M: 8. Jasper Todd 20.49, 16. Oliver James 22.09, 18. Callum Olden 22.14; U17W: 23. Anya Sandell 18.26; U15G: 23. Martha Preece 16.33; U13B: 23. Stanley Peters 12.08, 32. Archie Kilburn 12.23, 43. Will Bradfield 12.39, 65. Samuel Brewer 14.19, 66. Nathan Mearns 14.24, 71. Isaac Sandell 15.08; U13G: 6. Erin Wells 12.30, 35. Imogen Gent 13.51; U11B: 11. Isaac Jose 8.13, 13. William Launder 8.17, 19. Charlie Peters 8.27, 35. Jake Selwood 9.00, 49. Leo James 9.39, 50. Connor Bailey-Pearce 9.41, 51. Solly Abu-Ghaba, 54. Liam Sharp; U11G: 6. Isobel Cherrett 8.39, 10. Esmee Hurst Atkins 8.55, 14. Katie Kilburn 9.05, 26. Amy Betts 9.59, 35. Jasmine Mahmoudi 10.40, 37. Jessica King 10.43.

Team BAC at the Wessex League Cross Country
It was a modest start to the cross country season for BAC but there’s still all to play for in the remaining fixtures

 

Hampshire XC League finale plus Southern XC Championships

Simon Hearn, who does so much coaching the youngsters and providing a BAC base at fixtures, competing at Dibden

 

 

 

 

 

 

There were some spectacular BAC performances at the final Hampshire Cross Country League fixture of the season at Dibden Inclosure, New Forest, on Saturday 9 February, and earlier at the Southern Cross Country Championships held at Parliament Hill, London on 26 January. Featuring in both were Rob McTaggart, 19th Senior Man (of 194) in the New Forest, and 87th (of…….wait for it……………1154) at Parliament Hill, and Jasper Todd, who was 8th U15B of 47 at the Hampshire League fixture (and is the 10th U15B for the season) and finished an astonishing 34th in a field of 296 in the Southern Championships. Martha Preece also produced quality runs in the U13G races at both fixtures, finishing 90th of 316 at Parliament Hill and 15th of 60 at DibdenHolly Collier continues to amaze, finishing 9th Senior Woman at Dibden (3rd U20W), and, for the season, has achieved the heights of 2nd female overall.

Rob McTaggart on his way to 19th position at the final Hants XC League fixture in the New Forest

There had been high hopes of a 2nd or 3rd Senior Men team final position as the final fixture of the Hampshire Cross Country League at Dibden Inclosure on 9 February approached, but, the day before, it looked as if BAC would have neither a Senior or Veteran Men team at all, except by relying on an ageing Ian Graham to run as the last scorer for both teams.  Fortunately, Sanjai Sharma came to the rescue, with the result that there was a reasonable outcome, if not what had been hoped for nor what BAC is capable of producing.  Nevertheless, many thanks to those who turned up and ran their socks off so that, at the end, the BAC Senior Men comfortably retain their Division 1 status, which is the main aim throughout the season.  Rob McTaggart led the team home, and, with Richard Brawn, Stuart Glenister, Sanjai Sharma and Simon Hearn all finishing within the top 100, Division 1 status was secure.  Ian Graham, having thought, the previous day, that it was inevitable that he would have to run, ran anyway in case anyone dropped out.  Stuart, Sanjai and Simon completed the Veteran Mens‘ team, ensuring a position in the season’s results, which otherwise would not have occurred as BAC had no Veteran Mens‘ team at an earlier fixture.  On the day, BAC‘s Senior Men were 7th of 9 teams, and, on aggregate for the season, 6th of 9 teams, which has to be considered satisfactory – however, a glance at the positions for each of the five fixtures (3,2,8,6,7) gives a clue as to what might have been.  On the day, BAC‘s Veteran Men were 9th of 19 teams, 11th of 19 for the season.  The fact that there were more BAC ladies than men competing at Dibden is an indication of the fantastic progress of BAC‘s ladies over the last few years.  Holly Collier was amazing as ever, with strong runs from Nikki Sandell and Julia Austin securing an excellent team result of 5th of 20 teams on the day, and BAC‘s Veteran Ladies of Nikki, Julia and Kirsty Drewett finishing as the 6th team of 16 on the day.  BAC‘s teams had plenty of support with Louise Price, Mandy Adams, Annette Lewis and Jayne Wade also completing the course.  Annette is a very welcome addition to the BAC squad – although Annette couldn’t score for BAC this time as she has competed this season for Poole Runners she will certainly count next season!  So, at the end of the season, BAC‘s Senior Ladies were 7th aggregate of 18 teams, the Veteran Ladies an amazing 4th of 13 teams, and there were individual aggregate placings for Holly Collier (2nd overall female – by a quirk of the resulting Holly was 3rd U20W, with Poole Runner‘s Serena O’Connor 2nd; Serena was 3rd overall!) and Nikki Sandell who was 9th Veteran Lady.  Well done BAC ladies!!  A feature of Hampshire Cross Country League races this year has been the welcome increase in the number of BAC youngsters taking part (a tribute to the hard work of Simon Hearn and Tom Cochrane).  For instance, another very notable individual placing was Jasper Todd, who finished the season as 10th aggregate U15B.  At Dibden Jasper ran well, as always, to finish 8th in a field of 47.  There has been an U13B team at each and every one of the 5 fixtures this season, which must be a first for many, many years, and, in this respect, BAC is one of only six clubs who can claim this.  Congratulations to Louie Todd, Sam Brewer and Isaac Sandell who made up the BAC team at Dibden.  Clubs which have produced teams at just four fixtures still count in the final results, and BAC‘s U13B team was 9th for the season.  BAC was also represented in the girls’ races – Anya Sandell in the U15G and Martha Preece in the U13G. Many thanks to everyone who supported the various BAC teams in the Hampshire Cross Country League season, and especial thanks to Simon Hearn, who has taken the club tent and banner to all the fixtures, which does so much to enhance the ‘cross country experience’!  Subject to confirmation, the next season is likely to start at Kings Park on 19 October.  Please see below for full BAC results.

Holly Collier leads the BAC ladies home at Dibden

Please see below for more photos from Dibden…………..

Simon was also providing support to the BAC athletes competing in the Southern Cross Country Championships at Parliament Hill on 26 January, which was very much appreciated.  In addition to Rob McTaggart, Jasper Todd and Martha Preece, already mentioned, BAC vests were also worn at the fixture by Neve and Lauren East and Louie ToddNeve ran particularly well, as can be seen from the full results which follow.  Here are the full BAC results from Parliament Hill: Rob McTaggart (SM; 87th of 1154; time 51.15; distance 15k), Lauren East (U17W; 97th of 176; time 22.51; distance 5k), Jasper Todd (U15B; 34th of 296; time 16.18; distance 4.5k), Neve East (U13G; 24th of 316; time 13.03; distance 3k), Martha Preece (U13G; 90th of 316; time 13.52; distance 3k), Louie Todd (U13B; 257th of 330; time 14.06; distance 3k).

Results (BAC) of Hampshire Cross Country League, Dibden Inclosure, 9 February. Senior/Veteran Men: 19. Rob McTaggart 34.41, 63. Richard Brawn 38.41, 83. Stuart Glenister 40.17, 85. Sanjai Sharma 40.24, 96. Simon Hearn 41.35, 177. Ian Graham 50.41; Senior/Veteran Women: 9. Holly Collier (3rd U20W) 23.15, 28. Nikki Sandell 26.04, 47. Julia Austin 27.23, 76. Kirsty Drewett 29.59, 82. Louise Price 30.31, 95. Mandy Adams 31.43, 105. Annette Lewis, 110. Jayne Wade 34.05; U15B: 8. Jasper Todd 15.21; U13B: 60. Louie Todd, 66. Sam Brewer, 67. Isaac Sandell; U15G: 41. Anya Sandell 20.12; U13G: 15. Martha Preece 11.03.

More photos of BAC athletes at Dibden………………..

Richard Brawn
Stuart Glenister
Sanjai Sharma, whose late decision to compete may have saved BAC’s Division 1 status, at Dibden
Nikki Sandell
Julia Austin
Kirsty Drewett closely followed by Mandy Adams
Louise Price
Annette Lewis
Jayne Wade

 

BAC starlets impress at Southern Cross Country Champs

Louie Todd in the South of England AA Cross Country Championships
Louie Todd was one of six Bournemouth AC members competing at the South of England AA Cross Country Championships at Parliament Hill, five of whom were from the youth development squad

On what is perhaps the toughest and most brutal cross country course in the country, no fewer than five Bournemouth AC members from the youth development squads were bold enough to make the daunting trip over to Parliament Hill and lace up their spikes for the South of England AA Cross Country Championships.

In the Under 13 Girls race, both Martha Preece and Neve East were in action for the yellow and blues, whilst Lauren East went in the Under 17 Girls category. Louie Todd competed in the Under 13 Boys division, with his brother Jasper Todd flying the flag in the Under 15 Boys race.

There was also room for one big kid amongst the line up, with Rob McTaggart pitting his wits against the region’s finest  in the Senior Men‘s race.

Under the expert stewardship of Tom Cochrane and Simon Hearn, the BAC junior athletes have really been flourishing of late and the hard work they have been putting in in training is clearly paying dividends.

The juniors participate in track sessions on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and as a bonus session, Simon has been running a training group over at Hengistbury Head on Sunday mornings where they practice hills.

Those additional hill sessions would have certainly helped in the South of England AA Championships as Parliament Hill is renowned for its extreme inclines and undulating profile throughout.

As is always the case at Parliament Hill, the mud was thick and it must have felt like wading through treacle at times for the athletes as they trudged round their respective routes, jostling for position in much larger fields than they would ordinarily be used to.

Continuing her fantastic recent run of results, Neve East had another outstanding performance to finish in 24th place out of 316 in the Under 13 Girls race. Recording a time of 13:03 for the 3k course, Neve finished less than a minute behind the race winner Ruby Vinton of Ipswich Harriers.

Neve East in the Southern Cross Country Championships
Neve East, in her trademark pink socks, glides across the mud with an eloquent ease as she races toward a lofty 34th place finish

Considering she was up against the best young girls in the South of England, it was a remarkable achievement from Neve in what has been a truly magnificent season.

Winning her age category in the Wessex Cross Country League, Neve also finished 8th when competing for Dorset in the South West Inter County Championships.

She also won the Dorset County Championships for the Under 13 Girls at Bryanston School a couple of weeks before Christmas.

Also running an excellent race in the Under 13 Girls category was Martha Preece, who crossed the line in 90th place in a time of 13:52, so again, well up the field despite the high standard of the opposition.

Martha Preece in the Southern Cross Country Championships
Martha Preece works her way toward the finish where she would comfortably take a top 100 position

Martha has also had a cracking season on the cross country circuit and was part of the same Dorset team as Neve that took 3rd place at the South West Inter Counties, finishing in a highly impressive 19th place that day.

Taking 5th position in the Under 13 Girls category in the Wessex League Cross Country this season, it`s clear to see that Martha has a bright future ahead of her.

On top of that, she was also 4th in the Dorset County Championships and regularly finished high up the pecking order in the Hampshire Cross Country League fixtures.

Meanwhile, back at the South of England AA Champs, the Under 17 Girls had a 5k route to contend with and Neve’s sister Lauren East featured in that race for Bournemouth AC.

She came in in a very creditable 97th place in a field of 176, which was a decent result for Lauren, especially considering that she was up against the best that the South of England has to offer. Lauren`s time was a very solid 22:51.

Lauren East in the Southern Cross Country Championships
Lauren East blasts her way round the 5 kilometre course in the Under 17 Girls race

There have been many positive results for Lauren over the numerous cross country fixtures she’s taken part in this season and finishing 26th in the South West Inter Counties could well be one of the highlights. She also finished 10th in the last Hampshire League Cross Country fixture at Prospect Park in Reading.

As for the boys, it was Louie Todd wearing the famous yellow and blue in the Under 13 race, which was also 3 kilometres in length. He gave it everything he’s got, securing 257th place out of the 330 who took part and clocking a superb time of 14:06.

Having also competed in a number of the Hampshire League and Wessex League Cross Country fixtures over the course of the season, Louie has shown great enthusiasm to get involved, as has his brother Jasper, who featured in the Under 15 Boys race at the South of England AA Champs.

Louie Todd in the South of England AA Cross Country Championships
Louie Todd battles his adversaries in the Under 13 Boys race where he did his coaches proud to come in 257th in a very high standard field

Demonstrating the terrific talent he has in his armory, Jasper Todd was 34th over the line, completing the 4.5k course in a staggeringly quick time of 16:18. That was out of a field of 296.

Jasper’s achievements for the season so far include a 10th place finish in the South West Inter Counties where he was part of a Dorset team that took 3rd place in the Under 15 Boys category.

Also winning a gold medal in the Dorset County Championships at Bryanston School, this would have to go down as an extremely successful season from Jasper’s perspective.

Finishing just outside the top ten in a couple of the Hampshire League Cross Country fixtures, Jasper also took 2nd place in the Wessex League race at Lytchett School back in October.

Jasper Todd in the South of England Cross Country Championships
Jasper Todd, to the left of the picture, had a terrific run, putting the hill training he`d been given to great effect in the Under 15 Boys race

Going along to support the juniors that he coaches, Simon Hearn was extremely proud of their efforts at the South of England AA Championships and was thrilled to see them all performing so well.

In fact the junior athletes deserve a lot of recognition for all the hard work they’ve put in over the season and there’s certainly no doubt that these bright prospects are putting Bournemouth AC on the map when it comes to the youth athletics scene.

Also in action for Bournemouth AC in the Senior Men`s race was Rob McTaggart, who has been involved in some pretty raucous races at Parliament Hill over the years.

In fact, he’s competed in the Southern Cross Country Championships at Parliament Hill on five separate occasions now and also featured in the event at Stanmer Park in Brighton last year. He’s also been to Parliament Hill for the National Cross Country Championships on a couple of occasions.

Rob McTaggart in South of England Cross Country Championships
Rob McTaggart featured in the Senior Men`s race where he wasn`t prepared to be brushed aside easily in a fiercely competitive and feisty field

Very few of those races have gone by without incident though and this one was no different. Tag found himself face down in the mud on a couple of occasions, once just 600m into the race and the second time at around 4km.

He rallied well though did his best to move through the field and make up for any lost ground. Although he had a couple of bad patches on the muddier sections, he was very satisfied with his performance and even managed a decent sprint finish at the end to take 87th place.

That was a mightily impressive result in a huge field of 1,154 men and of course, being the South of England Championships, the standard of the competitors he was up against was extremely high.

Completing the brutal 15 kilometre course in a time of 51 minutes and 15 seconds, it was certainly one of his best cross country performances to date and demonstrates how he often manages to raise his game in the most challenging of races, and in particular, those where the stakes are notably high.

Cross Country – SW Regional Championships and Hampshire XC League

Richard Wade and Simon Hearn (running for both County and Club), Ian Graham and Stuart Glenister (who would have been selected for County had he not transferred to BAC just that day)

The South West Regional Championships took place Yeovil on Sunday 6 January with BAC well represented, its athletes competing in both club and county colours. The event is an inter-county competition between counties from Cornwall in the west to Dorset and Wiltshire in the east It is also a club competition and those athletes selected to represent their county, and run in county colours, also represent their club alongside their non selected club mates who run in club colours. Several BAC athletes achieved podium positions in the inter-counties competition – congratulations to gold medallist Georgia Wood, the South West F35 Champion, and bronze medallists Helen Ambrosen, 3rd South West F55, and Neve East and Martha Preece, part of the 3rd placed Dorset U13G team,  Jasper Todd, part of the 3rd placed Dorset U15B team, and Amelia Reynolds, part of the 3rd placed Dorset U15G team. Congratulations also to ex BAC athlete Heidi Tregenza, running for her native Cornwall, and achieving no less than a gold medal as the overall South West Ladies’ Champion! This was a well organised, enjoyable fixture, helped by the fact that the large BAC and WAC tents were combined, which became the base for all the Dorset athletes, promoting a great team spirit. The course is one of the best available, used also for the Wessex XC League, and it is a tremendous pity that this time next year it may well be covered with housing. Please see below for full BAC results.

Georgia Wood – top of the podium as the SW Regional F35 champion
Helen Ambrosen (right) with her bronze medal as 3rd SW Regional F55
Heidi Tregenza – ladies SW regional cross country champion and gold medallist

See below for more photographs of the SW Regional XC Championships………

 

Holly Collier and Nikki Sandell line up for the start of the senior ladies’ race at Reading

The penultimate fixture of the Hampshire Cross Country League season took place at Prospect Park, Reading, on Saturday 12 January.  There were some excellent BAC performances, particularly from Rob McTaggart, 17th in the SM race, Holly Collier, 9th in the SW race and Neve East, 2nd in the U13G race.  Holly is the only BAC athlete to feature in the top 10 individual aggregate placings so far, being 7th female, and an excellent 3rd U20W.  The only complete teams fielded by BAC at Reading were the SM and S/VW, and although the SM team wasn’t the strongest the club could produce, BAC is still on course to finish the season in a highly respectable position in Division 1 of the League, provided we come fully up to the mark at the final fixture at Dibden Inclosure on February 9.  There were no BAC Veteran Men competing at Reading, but as one result can be dropped, the Veteran Men team will still feature in the season’s results provided a team competes next time. BAC‘s Veteran Women are currently 4th aggregate for the season, so a good result at the final fixture would leave them well placed. Please see below for full BAC results.

Richard Brawn is determined on a Prospect Park, Reading Hill

See below for more photographs of the Hampshire Cross League fixture at Reading………………….

Results (BAC) at SW Regional Championships, Yeovil, 6 January 2019: Senior Men (total field 162): 83. Richard Brawn 35.27, 107. Richard Wade 37.39 (6th of 17 M50), 108. Stuart Glenister 37.44 (18/38 M40), 128. Simon Hearn (9/17 M50) 39.37, 156. Ian Graham (6/7 M60) 46.10, BAC team 6/9, DC team 6/6; Senior Women (total field 91): 7. Georgia Wood (1/24 F35) 21.19, 70. Kirsty Drewett (18/24 F35) 27.37, 76. Louise Price (14/19 F45) 28.29, 79. Helen Ambrosen (3/5 F55) 30.04, 85. Jayne Wade (18/19 F45) 31.21, BAC team 6/9, DC team 5/5; U17W: (total field 41) 26. Lauren East 18.24, DC 4/5 team; U15B: (total field 49) 10. Jasper Todd 14.39, DC team 3/6; U15G (total field 56): 16. Amelia Reynolds 15.06, DC team 3/5; U13B (total field 68): 66. Louie Todd 16.00; U13G (total field 62): 8. Neve East 13.44, 19. Martha Preece 14.18, 36. Erin Wells 14.54, DC team 3/6.

Results (BAC) Hampshire Cross Country League, Reading, 12 January 2019: Senior Men (total field 207): 17. Rob McTaggart, 61. Stuart Nicholas 35.34, 62. Craig Palmer 35.38, 63. Richard Brawn 35.44, 88. Ross Smith 37.22, 93. Mat du Cros 37.58, BAC team 6th of 9 on the day, season aggregate 3= with Basingstoke & Mid Hants (Southampton 2nd and Reading RR and Reading AC both 5=); Senior Women (total field 150): 9. Holly Collier (6th U20) 20.25, 43. Nikki Sandell (9th VF) 22.48, 53. Julia Austin (15th VF) 23.47, 84. Louise Price (32nd VF) 26.03, 113. Jayne Wade (52nd VF) 28.55, BAC SW team 9/19 on the day, season aggregate 8/21, BAC VW team 6/12 on the day, season aggregate 4/15; U17W (total field 22): 10. Lauren East 16.23; U15G (total field 44): 13. Amelia Reynolds 12.27, 39. Anya Sandell 14.55; U13B (total field 66): 60. Isaac Sandell 14.06, 64. Nathan Mearns 15.51; U13G (total field 61): 2. Neve East 11.08, 18. Martha Preece 11.58.

Some more images of the SW Regional Championships at Yeovil…

Dorset ladies’ team at SW Championships including Kirsty Drewett (2nd left), Jayne Wade (4th left), Louise Price and Helen Ambrosen (6th and 7th left)
Stuart Glenister and Simon Hearn tackle the SW Championship course at Yeovil
Richard Wade about to tackle one of the Yeovil hills
Richard takes the tactical inner curve at Yeovil – does he overtake Stuart??

More BAC athletes running also for Dorset at Yeovil…….

Kirsty Drewett
Holly Collier
Jayne Wade
Helen Ambrosen
Louise Price
Simon Hearn and Richard Brawn

And a few more photographs from the Hampshire XC League……..

Julia Austin on course at Reading
Louise Price tracks her opponents
Nikki Sandell digs in
Jayne Wade – yet another hill!
Richard Brawn happy with his run at Reading, despite………………
…………..contact with someone else’s spikes!!

Cross Country: Wessex League Triumph and Hampshire League show still on the road

 

BAC’s mens’ team at Popham – Theo Irvine, Stuart Glenister, Richard Wade, Richard Nelson, Stuart Nicholas, Matt du Cros, Richard Brawn, Laszlo Toth, Simon Hearn, Ross Smith, Jud Kirk and Brandon Meredith

The final fixture of the Wessex Cross Country League took place at Bryanston School on Sunday 16 December with some BAC first individual and team places for the season and, as the fixture was also the Dorset County Cross Country Championship, a number of BAC gold, silver and bronze medals. In the meantime, at the third Hampshire Cross Country League fixture at Popham Airfield on Saturday 1 December, despite the absence the entire team from the previous fixture at Aldershot, some exceptional performances kept BAC very much in the running.

There has been greater support of this year’s Wessex Cross Country League from BAC than for many years, and this is reflected in the final aggregate results.  Winners for the season in their respective age groups are Laszlo Toth (senior men), Nikki Sandell (veteran women), Neve East (U13 girls) and Amelia Reynolds (U15 girls).  Other notable placings were Chris Phelan-Heath (3rd senior man), Julia Austin (3rd veteran woman), Isabel Cherrett (7th – of 24 – U11 girl), Oscar Ewen Matthews (2nd U13 boy) and Martha Preece (5th – of 26 – U13 girl).  There were BAC team wins for senior men, senior and veteran women, U13 girls and U15 girls and a second team placing for the U13 boys.  On the day at Bryanston School the notable performances were from David Long, Sean Edwards, Stuart Nicholas and Laszlo Toth with a 1,2,3,4 in the senior men (although Ben Lewis of Poole AC, U20 man was 2nd in the race), Georgia Wood, 1st senior woman (although just pipped on the line by Serena O’Connor of Poole Runners, U20 woman), Nikki Sandell and Julia Austin, 1st and 2nd veteran women respectively, Holly Collier, 2nd U20 woman, finishing an astonishing 3rd in the combined U20W, SW and VW race, Isabel Cherrett, 8th U11 girl, Arief McKenna and Oliver Hill, 2nd and 8th U13 boys respectively, Neve East, Martha Preece and Erin Wells, 1st, 6th and 11th U13 girls respectively, Jasper Todd, 1st U15 boy and Amelia Reynolds, 3rd U15 girl.  In the County Championship there was a BAC clean sweep for the senior men, the winners being David Long (gold), Sean Edwards (silver) and Laszlo Toth (bronze), and other medal winners were Georgia Wood (gold, veteran women), Julia Austin (silver, veteran women), Neve East (gold, U13 girls), Arief McKenna (silver, U13 boys), Amelia Reynolds (silver, U15 girls) and Jasper Todd (gold U15 boys).  Many thanks to everyone who has participated in the Wessex Cross Country League this year – it has been very enjoyable to see the number of BAC vests in the various races at all levels.  Please see below for the full BAC results in championship and the league fixture at Bryanston School.

BAC’s ladies team at Popham – Kirsty Drewett, Helen Ambrosen, Jayne Wade, Julia Austin, Nikki Sandell and Holly Collier

The absence of some of BAC‘s top runners due to various reasons at the third Hampshire Cross Country League fixture at Popham Airfield on 1 December meant that it was going to be difficult, but after some exceptional running BAC is still on course for a good placing at the end of the season.  Well done to our five scoring senior men.  Laszlo Toth and Stuart Nicholas have been involved in healthy rivalry this year, and both ran out of their socks at Popham to finish 42nd and 45th respectively.  Also running above themselves were Ross Smith and Rich Brawn, 54th and 86th respectively, and well done to Matthew du Cros, who finished only just outside the top 100, an excellent performance in a very strong league, to complete the team.  The senior mens’ team were 8th in Division 1 on the day, but on aggregate remain 2= taking the best two results so far.  BAC‘s veteran mens’ team of Richard Wade, Stuart Glenister and Simon Hearn were 11th on the day, and the team on aggregate is 11th (of 24) in the season so far.  For the ladies, the outstanding performance came from Holly Collier, who was 9th overall (3rd U20 woman).  Nikki Sandell and Julia Austin completed the BAC team, which was 10th (of 24) on the day, and lies 8th aggregate for the season.  Nikki and Julia were joined by Kirsty Drewett to make up the veteran womens’ team, which finished 5th (of 18) on the day and is 4th aggregate for the season.  Slowly but surely the number of youngsters competing in the league is growing, a trend very much to be welcomed, and there were outstanding runs at Popham from Jasper Todd, who was 18th of 59 U15 boys, Amelia Reynolds, 9th of 57 U15 girls and Martha Preece, 11th of 71 U13 girls.  There has been an U13 boys team at every fixture so far.  Please see below for full BAC results at Popham.

Dorset County Championship results, Bryanston School, 16 December  (BAC): Senior Men: 1. David Long, 2. Sean Edwards, 3. Laszlo Toth; Veteran Women: 1. Georgia Wood, 2. Julia Austin, 5. Louise Price; Veteran Men: 5. Simon Hearn, 10. Ian Graham; U17 Women: 5. Laura Reeves; U15 Boys: 1. Jasper Todd; U15 Girls: 2. Amelia Reynolds, 12. Abigail Phillips; U13 Boys: 2. Arief McKenna, 14. Oscar Ewen Matthews; U13 Girls: 1. Neve East, 4. Martha Preece, 5. Erin Wells, 10. Ida Waring.

Wessex Cross Country League, Bryanston School, 16 December (BAC results): Senior/Veteran Men: 1. David Long 29.32, 3. Sean Edwards 31.48, 4. Stuart Nicholas 32.15, 5. Laszlo Toth 32.21, 10. Chris Phelan-Heath 34.21, 21. Simon Hearn 35.57, 22. Richard Wade 36.29, 43. Ian Graham 45.01; Senior/Veteran Women: 2. Georgia Wood 25.22, 10. Nikki Sandell 28.59, 11. Julia Austin 29.08, 19. Kirsty Drewett 31.07, 24. Louise Price 33.01, 32. Helen Ambrosen 34.52, 33. Jayne Wade 37.07; U11 Girls: 8. Isabel Cherrett 7.17; U13 Boys: 2. Arief McKenna 10.36, 8. Oliver Hill 11.25, 19. Oscar Ewen Matthews 11.44, 23. Sam Farwell 11.59, 25. Louie Todd 12.10, 31. Sam Brewer 13.41, 32. Nathan Mearns 13.53, 33. Isaac Sandell 14.00; U13 Girls: 1. Neve East 11.02, 6. Martha Preece 11.34, 11. Erin Wells 12.08, 26. Ida Waring 12.38, 32. Sienna Treloar; U15 Boys: 1. Jasper Todd 11.54; U15 Girls: 3. Amelia Reynolds 13.24, 16. Ruby Bowden 15.08, 17. Anya Sandell 15.31, 19. Abigail Phillips 15.48; U17 Men: 10. Tom Farwell 16.45; U 17 Women: 8. Laura Reeves 21.56; U20 Women: 2. Holly Collier 25.44.

Hampshire Cross Country League, Popham, 1 December (BAC results): Senior/Veteran Men: 42. Laszlo Toth 38.01; 45. Stuart Nicholas 38.08, 54. Ross Smith 38.28, 86. Richard Brawn 39.45, 104 Matthew du Cros 41.06, 134. Richard Wade 42.47, 136. Stuart Glenister 42.52, 153. Simon Hearn 43.59, 161. Theo Irvine 44,38, 196. Brandon Meredith 46.45; Senior/Veteran Women: 9. Holly Collier (3rd U20W) 24.35, 51. Nikki Sandell 28.05, 58. Julia Austin 28.31, 72. Kirsty Drewett 29.29, 128. Helen Ambrosen 34.31, 139. Jayne Wade 36.44; U15 Boys: 18. Jasper Todd 14.06, 30. Callum Olden 14.47; U13 Boys: 74. Sam Brewer, 75. Isaac Sandell, 77. Nathan Mearns; U15 Girls: 9. Amelia Reynolds 15.48, 46. Anya Sandell 18.11; U13 Girls: 11. Martha Preece 12.37.