Kent County Cross Country Championships 2017 - Brands Hatch


Thick fog and poor visibility welcomed the athletes to the 2017 Kent Cross Country Championship opener at Brands Hatch. Over 50 BBHAC young athletes kicked off the New Year in some style at the long, tough and hilly circuit winning two individual golds and one team gold. With many athletes affected by seasonal coughs and colds it was still great to see so many black vests high up in all the fields.

The U13 girls got proceedings off in winning ways by picking up team gold with determined runs from Ellie Dolby in a solid 3rd, a fine 4thfrom Daniella Harper and a great 7th from Lily Meers. Amerisa Sibley continued her fine form finishing 8thand Heidi Forsyth finished well in a high 10th. Amelia Middleton was a great 13th, Olivia Berry 17thand Kelsey Pullin 27thbacked up by Amelie Willars in 50thand Sofia Elliot in 55th. A great team performance and worthy of gold.

The U13 boys had the biggest squad on the day and another great run from Tom Brash had him crossing the line in 5thplace followed by Thomas Penlington in a strong 9thwith Ben Campbell putting in another great performance finishing a fine 12th. Max Gregson had a solid run in 18thand Oliver Robertson and Matthew Smith had their own private battle finishing 24thand 25th. Will Andrews had a good run placing 29thand Jamie Sears did well finishing 30thdespite a last minute footwear change on the start line! Callum Carlton was 44thand Josh Buddle Smith 49thwith Oles Chaban in his first County Championships 65th. Sam Stuart started well but took a heavy fall and was unable to finish but will have many more opportunities to race over the country. These collective results were good enough for the U13 boys to win team silver.

The U15 girls were up next and Morgan Squibb showed real guts despite not being 100% well finishing a tough 4thbacked up by a great 7thplace for Zoe White and good to see Jess Neal back to her best in a pleasing 9th. Lily Tappenden looked strong crossing the line in 13thwith Niamh Milmo in 19thand Rosie Allan 22nd. Emily Davis was 29thand completing the squad was Isabelle Bridge in 34th. The team was a worthy winner of the silver medals.

Peter Guy led the U15 boys out in typical determined fashion and was rewarded with a solid 10thplace finish in a quality field. Matthew Francis, reigning Kent Champion and making his BBHAC debut did well holding on to 11thplace having missed a few weeks training due to illness. However, still a fine debut. Joe Georgiadis had a good run placing 13thand a strong finish from Cameron Swatton had him 20thjust ahead of Robert Suckling in 21st. Keir Lundy was a good 25th, Ben Gardiner 29th,Justin Strover 31stand Jake Leng 34thcompleted the U15 boys numbers. The team finished 4thbut in very strong competition.

Amy Leach had a very strong run and was first BB U17 girl home in a impressive 6thplace just ahead of Millie Smith finishing well in 7th. Yasmin Austridge crossed the line in 9thside by side with Lottie Weitzel in 10th. Jess Sellar had a good run finishing 12th. Charlotte Faries had a great run in her first County Championships and should be pleased with her placing of 22nd. The U17 girl’s team picked up team silver for their efforts.

The U17 boy’s race was dominated by Tonbridge AC with their athletes filling places 1- 4 but great to see Lewis Mills holding his own and finishing well in a strong 7thplace with Oscar Hussey just behind in 10th. Callum Myatt had a strong run finishing 12thand Charlie Andrews 27thand Lewis Warren 36thcompleting the squad. Tonbridge took gold but BBHAC did well in the mix and their efforts were rewarded winning team silver medals.

We were not able to field enough athletes to complete scoring teams in the U20 races but what we lacked in numbers we more than made up with quality by winning both the U20 men and U20 women’s race. GB International Will Fuller looked comfortable throughout his 6.5k circuit and pulled away mid race to record a superb victory. Marco Arcuri backed up well in 16th. In the U20 women’s race England International Jess Keene ran positively from the gun and was a clear winner nearly a minute ahead of her next rival. Leah Everson also ran well finishing in 9th. Joanna Clowes started well in her race but unfortunately had to pull out mid race.

It’s true what they say about distance runners enjoying the pain and to prove this point U20’s Thomas Desborough and Scott Bulmer both decided to do double the distance and do the senior men’s race, all 12k of it. Also great to see former young athlete Will Ruiz back competing for the club after an enforced absence due to injury.

In the Surrey Cross Country Championship held in Lloyd Park , Croydon, Blackheath and Bromley athletes put in some great performances. Sophie Hoare won the U15 girls title while Amy Miller ran well finishing 12th. In the U13 girls race Holly Sutton Trot was 18thmaking her BBHAC cross country debut

At the Middlesex equivalent in Hillingdon, the U13 girls excelled with Naomi Toft winning, Anwen Thomas placing 2ndand Maayan Radus 4th. Yasmin Marghini comfortable won the U15 girls race and on her BB debut, Lucrezia Polloni ran well finishing a great 4th.