Kent XC League 2016 Danson Park - Report

The 2016 Kent league cross country series came to an end this weekend in great style for BBHAC young athletes, with three individual victories, three team gold and two team silver along with six athletes collecting individual league trophies and thirty one athletes completing a full house of racing in all four Kent league races. 

Past President Dave Cordell started his busy day putting up the BBHAC tent ably assisted by winter team captain Marco Arcuri, who was still out of breath having just run the Bexley Park run. Dave’s next task was setting up the finish funnel where he was to spend the rest of the day acting as race referee.

The U13 girls were first off and have had great strength and depth all season resulting in a fine team victory. Ellie Dolby pushed on from the off winning comfortably, completing a hat trick of wins and picking up the league individual overall gold trophy for her efforts. Daniella Harper has been highly consistent all winter and finished high up the field in 4th and was worthy winner of the bronze individual trophy. Amerisa Sibley had a great run finishing 7th (5th individual overall) just in front of Olivia Berry’s great 8th place (7th individual overall). Heidi Forsyth had her best run of the year placing 11th (13th individual overall). Kelsey Pullin broke into the top 20 for the first time with a gutsy run finishing 18th (15th individual overall) and Ella Smith completed the series with another top 20 finish placing 19th (12th individual overall). Zara Aslam ran strongly crossing the line in 25th as did Isabella Louth in a good 30th. Amelie Willars was 39th and having run all four was rewarded with an individual overall placing of 28th.  Sofia Elliot completed the strong squad with a 41st finish.

Sam Reardon started the U13 boys race positively and was in a pack of three with a couple of hundred meters remaining. Once out of sight of his parents Sam sprinted to the front and bravely held on to record his second win of the season! A great sprint finish. Ben Campbell had another fine run finishing 13th but more importantly was 4th individual overall. Max Gregson had a strong run finishing 14th (7th individual overall). Matt Smith was a strong 17th (11th individual overall) and Oliver Robertson was 22nd (placing 14th individual overall). Sam Stuart on only his second club XC race was a good 26th and Will Andrews crossed the line in 29th with Callum Carlton in 33rd. Oles Chaban completed the series in 34th (placing a great 22nd overall) and Jake Anthony in his first year was 40th (a fine 20th overall). Nick Paddington completed the full house finishing 46th and a high 26th overall. Good to see Josh Buddle Smith running and finishing inside the top fifty in 48th. The team was second in the league table but interesting to note most of these boys will still be U13 next year.

Morgan Squibb then made it three wins out of three for BBHAC as she powered her way around the two-lap course winning by over 20 seconds. Morgan’s second victory of the season ensured she picked up the individual overall gold. Zoe White’s fine season continues as she finished 4th on the day and an impressive 4th overall for the season. Jess Neal is returning to form and posted a great 5th place performance. Lily Tappenden was a strong 8th (6th individual overall). Niamh Milmo was a good 13th and her seasons efforts saw her finish 10th overall.  Abbie Leeves was 15th and Isabelle Bridge 18th and having both raced in all four XC’s were highly place overall with 12th and 13th places respectively. These great U15 results were more than enough to win the team gold.

Peter Guy led the U15 boys home after a brave start attacking the race with the front runners eventually coming home in 8th place but more impressively shooting up the individual table finishing an impressive 2nd. Joe Georgiadis was just behind in a strong 9th and then close packing with a great run from Robert Suckling in 11th, Ben Gardiner a solid 12th and a fantastic overall 4th for the series. Cameron Swatton had his best league run finishing high up in 15th and making the top ten overall in a fine 8th. Justin Strover looked strong crossing the line in 25th and Charles Winton completed his league campaign in style with by far his best run of the season in a pleasing 29th giving him 19th overall for the season. The team as a whole for the season was fourth behind some very strong Kent clubs.

Millie Smith had another solid race in the U17 girls race and won herself the bronze trophy in the individual overall standing. Lottie Weitzel had her highest finish of the year in a great 6th and Amy Leach’s 7th place saw her finish high up the overall individual table in 5th.Great to see Jess Sellar competing over the country and finishing in the top 10 with a solid 9th place and Charlotte Fairies in her second outing for the club completed our squad in 15th place. The U17 girls winnings ways had them firmly fixed at the top of the league table.

The U17 boys age group has been dominated by Tonbridge AC but the BBHAC lads did well to get amongst them and Lewis Mills’ 5th place on the day was good enough to earn him the bronze individual overall trophy. Michael Eagling had a great run in 8th with Oscar Hussey finishing his league season in 14th and 10th overall. Callum Myatt was 16th on the day and 11th overall for the season with Charlie Andrews just behind in 18th and 16th overall for the series. Finlay Brannan, in only his second race for BBHAC ran well crossing the line in 21st and Lewis Warren worked well on the 5k course coming a good 32nd. Overall the U17 boys performance was good enough to secure silver in the team competition.

Four U20 girls ran in the senior women’s race helping them to win the six to score competition. Kelsey Fuss ran well finishing 11th, Sam Leighton was a great 37th with Joanna Clowes just behind in 41st and fantastic to see Shannon Riskey back running over the country finishing inside the top half in 66th.

With no senior men’s race two of our U20 men ran in the combined U17 and U20 race and Charlie Davis finished a high 6th place and James Crawley did well crossing the line in 12th despite having had a busy evening the previous day.

Several BBHAC young athletes competed in Liverpool at the Cross Challenge incorporating the European Cross Country Championships Trials and Will Fuller battled hard down the finishing straight in the U20 men’s race and finished 5th and is rewarded with automatic Great Britain selection for the European XC Champs. In the U20 women’s race Katy Ann McDonald was 26th and Jess Keene 31st. Maayan Radus was 18th in the U13 girls and in the U15 girls race Yasmin Marghini was 7th, Sophie Hoare 14th and Lia Radus was 21st.

Elsewhere five BBHAC athletes competed in Solihull in the National Biathlon Championships. In the U12 girls age group a 50m swim and an 800m run have to be completed and Amelia Middleton did well finishing 4th with Lily Meers just behind in 7th and Hannah Clarke 43rd. In the U15 girls event consisting of a 200m swim followed by a 1600m run Hannah O'Flynn finished 12th and Zoe White was 17th.

We now look forward to the Championship season next year, beginning with the Kent XC Championships (and other counties) on 7th January 2017.