SAM WHALLEY reports on another busy weekend of cross-country racing…
Mud, mud, glorious mud, was the theme for the weekend as a total of 63 Reading Roadrunners lined up for the Hampshire and Thames Valley Cross Country Leagues, including Chloe Lloyd, Tony Page, Jon Green, Stuart Lunn and myself, who braved the double.
After the recent heavy rain leading up to Saturday, Prospect Park, the venue for the Hampshire League, was as muddy as we’d ever seen it, and those without spikes were relieved to have managed to remain upright on the undulating course. It was something of a baptism of fire for Eoin McLeod, running his first ever XC race.
Leading the way for the men was Ben Paviour (right), in an excellent 12th place (second vet, first V50), backed up by Ryan O’Brien (23rd), Dave Boulton (39th), Chris Burt (54th) and Mark Worringham (57th, 11th vet), bringing the men’s team home in sixth. The final scorer for the vets team was Lance Nortcliff (18th vet, fourth V50), giving the vets team second place.
First to finish for the women was Kat Charles (left) in an impressive 24th place, followed by Helen Pool (44th, 12th vet) and Chloe Lloyd (51st), to give the women’s team eighth.
Completing the vets team behind Helen were Ann Rostern (29th vet, tenth V50) and myself (34th vet, 12th V50), making the vets team fifth.
Hardly surprising that this local fixture produced the highest turn-out and the best team performances of the season so far.
Similar numbers at Popham, on February 11th and Bournemouth on March 4th, could save the men from relegation from Division 1.
For full results, and current team standings, visit https://www.hampshireathletics.org.uk/results/2023/20230114_hlmen.html and https://www.hampshireathletics.org.uk/results/2023/20230114_hlwomen.html.
It was Matt Sarjent (below) who led the green vests home at Sunday’s mudfest in Lightwater Country Park, finishing in 11th place. In support for the men’s team were Fergal Donnelly (15th), Dimi Gospodinov (35th), Gavin Rennie (61st), Tony Page (65th) and Ian Giggs (66th). The men’s team was sixth.
Scoring for the women were Pip White (16th, right), Chloe Lloyd (25th), Mary Janssen (30th) and Claire Marks (43rd), with the women’s team also sixth.
This overall team ranking of fifth puts the club in third leading into the final event of the season at ‘the hilly one’, Handy Cross, this coming Sunday.
Full results are here: http://www.tvxc.org.uk/results/team?race_id=108.
Thank you to everyone who turned up to run this weekend, and to the supporters who helped create the team spirit.
It’s not too late to take part in the XC Championship. Rules are here: https://readingroadrunners.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/RR-XC-Club-ChampsRules2022-2023.pdf and latest standings will be available here soon: https://readingroadrunners.org/2022/03/tvxc-results/
Here’s some links to photo albums from the weekend’s races…