Hampshire Cross Country League, Salisbury, 8 February

The final fixture of this season’s Hampshire Cross Country League took place at Hudson’s Field, Salisbury on Saturday 8 February in blustery conditions with plenty of mud, but the rain held off for the afternoon. BAC’s Senior Men’s team were fourth of the 9 complete Division 1 teams, with David Long running very strongly to finish 11th (David was fourth U20 which gives some idea of the quality of this League). The second, third and fourth BAC positions were sorted out in the last few yards of the race, with Simon Munro, Manol Dimitrov and Robin Copestick crossing the line within seconds of each other. The day was a repeat of earlier fixtures, with BAC missing the fifth finisher within the top 40, but Nick Kenchington again saved the day, completing the League team, with Andy Gillespie providing the vital back-up in the event of a non-finisher or someone not turning up (Andy has previously himself completed the League team as the fifth BAC finisher). For the first time this season a Lady wearing a BAC vest was in evidence, so congratulations and welcome to new signing Louise Price who competed in the Senior Womens’ race. Turning to the Juniors the only BAC competitors were in the U15 Boys’ race, in which Seb Hearn and Brandon Meredith ran, both of whom have been ‘regulars’ this season.
Results (BAC):
Senior Men: 11. David Long 32.17; 23. Simon Munro 33.46; 24. Manol Dimitrov 33.47; 25. Robin Copestick 33.50; 75. Nick Kenchington 38.25; 138. Andy Gillespie 44.46. A total of 163 ran.
Senior Women: 68. Louise Price 27.01. A total of 77 ran.
U15 Boys: 38. Seb Hearn 16.18; 45. Brandon Meredith 17.07. A total of 57 ran.
Looking at the season overall, the Senior Men aggregate position was 5th of nine complete teams at all the fixtures. The final result is calculated by adding together all the finishing positions, in our case 6, 4, 7, 1 and 4, a total of 22. Reading AC also scored 22, but rank above us as their aggregate of individual finishing positions was considerably lower than ours. Winchester & District scored 23 points, and, above us, Basinstoke & Mid Hants scored 20 and Southampton 17. So, if we had had that all-important 5th scorer in the top 40 in, say, two more of the fixtures we could well have finished second in Division 1 (Aldershot & District were streets ahead in the lead). Maybe we can be satisfied with the final result, which leaves us comfortably in Division 1 (our aggregate individual score was way below the top of Division 2), but it’s perhaps a little disappointing that the result doesn’t reflect the potential of the club. There were no individual BAC award winners, although Bridget Dence only missed out as she was competing in the South West Schools Championships at Kings Park on the same day as the Hampshire League Salisbury fixture.