This year saw a new venue for the Southern Cross Country Championships, Beckenham Place Park in Kent. Chiltern Harriers had a good day in sunny but gusty conditions on a scenic course that had some sections with a quite hard surface. The finish was a tough long uphill grind.
The U15 Boys again took the main plaudits with an excellent team win. There were several other Chiltern teams in the top ten and several top ten individuals although no further medals.
The U15 Boys were the first race off and Alden Collier had a good run in fourth to lead the Chiltern team home. The other scorers were Euan Pinder (14th), Archie Pinder (15th) and Daniel Munn (25th). However the team’s strength in depth showed with Max Baxter (28th), Rowan Gawne (45th), Alex Hughes (51st) Isaac Jessop-Tranter (72nd), and Callum Powell (141st) all running well.
Next up were the U13 Girls and there was a good turnout from the Chiltern girls who finished a creditable fifth from 16 complete teams. Year 6 Girl Kara Gorman ran superbly in her first major championships to be sixth. Joining Kara in the scorers were Marlie Nkoane (33rd), Issy Robinson (83rd), and Megan Lockwood (90th), Also doing well were Evelyn Wildman (124th) and Lydia Cross (149th).
The U13 Boys also did well to be sixth with Tom Ford having a great run to be eighth. James Holdsworth (23rd), Charlie Quantrill (74th), and Zach Cleary (81st) completed the scoring.
Another top ten team finish came from the U15 Girls who were seventh. Frankie Baxter had a good run to be 16th, Emily Ford was 19th, Sofia Lomas 70th and Lily Jessop-Tranter 75th. Izzy Martin (85th), Jo Snelling (107th), Marea Logan (124th), Rebecca Lawson (148th) and Savarnah Pandya (151st) completed the Chiltern presence.
The Chiltern U17 men’s team was tenth. Ash Finch (46th), Laurie Gawne (61st), Thomas Askey (73rd) and Jerry Anderson (76th) were the scorers and Sammy Bennetts was 86th.
Maddie Hughes had a great run to be fourth in the U17 Women’s race with Ellie Shield running well to be 68th. James Palmer had a good run to be 33rd in the U20 men’s race.