Written by SD
1st Downs League match on Sunday 8 November –
great performance of our young athletes and a comprehensive win for our U15 team
Proving hugely popular, the Surrey Young Athletes Downs XC League started off on Sunday 8th November 2009 with 62 runners representing 9 clubs or schools in the U11 category (school years 5,6 and younger); 38 runners started for 6 teams in the U13 group (school years 7,8), and 16 athletes ran for 5 teams in the U15 category (school years 9,10). Thus, competition was extremely tough. Moreover, our teams consisted of many newcomers, and many are 1st years in their respective age groups. They were up against the finest in Surrey. But our athletes showed that they are all up for it.
Harry Robinson built on last years experience and brought our U11s home in 5th place, smashing his old PB by 23 seconds. He was just ahead of Josh Webb (6th) who on the day represented his school Hinchley Wood Primary. Next came Gian Hobbs, in his 1st XC outing reaching an excellent 14th place (11th boy). We all rubbed our eyes in disbelieve when indeed our youngest girl, Kathryn Bartle, stormed to 18th place (5th girl; training regime: run the parks in Wellie boots), closely traced by U11-1 Mollie O’Sullivan, also a XC novice, in 20th place (7th girl) and a fine Nicholas Rilett in 21st place (14th boy). Our youngest lad, Sam Allan, finished 33rd (21st boy), followed by 1st year U11 Sophie Dimbleby 39th (17th girl). Our top U11 sprinter Nina Gibbins, also starting for Hinchley Wood PS, showed her stamina and finished 41st (19th girl), and Ella Norman, back from a long training break, come home 50th (26th girl). Sadly, U11-1 Leila Allan had an asthma attack and could not finish the race - hopefully she’ll be back next time. After match 1, the team score is led by Hinchley Wood Primary School with 34 points, followed by Sutton and District (42 points), Epsom and Ewell (44 points) and Kingston and Poly (57 points). The brilliant team effort of our youngsters clearly separates us from 5th placed Long Ditton St. M Primary School (93 points), Holland Sports (114 points), Thames Turbo Triathlon (182 points), Croydon Harriers (195 points) and Hurst Park Primary School (216 points). Well done to our U11s!
Though new to the Downs League, Joe Mallet confirmed his brilliant form from the Stoke Park Relays and Sutton Schools Champs and brought the U13 team home in 7th place (6th boy). Excellent runs led Nick Hart to 13th place (12th boy), 1st year U13 Oliver Phelps to 16th place (13th boy) and Naomi Kelly to 17th place (4th girl). Also 1st year in this age group, Nadia Allan stormed to 19th place (5th girl), followed by brave Laura Cook (20th, 6th girl) who had to stop midway when her misbehaving breakfast insisted on an independent existence. U13-1 sprinter Nick Osman, inspired by his great 4-lap race in Sportshall, finished a very nice 21st place (15th boy), traced by equally great Ella Shaw (22nd, 7th girl) and U13-1 Caitlin Dimbleby (23rd/ 8th girl). Fine runs brought U13-1 Laura Darcey home to 29th (11th girl), U13-1 Marcus Lorde 33rd (20th boy), thrower James Rilett 35th (22nd boy) and U13-1 Siobhan Croall 37th place (15th girl). These excellent efforts secured us 4th place overall, with 53 points just trailing Epsom and Ewell (49 points), Sutton and District (36 points) and Croydon (30 points), leaving Holland Sports (67 points) and Thames Turbo (138 points) behind us. A very nice start to the season – well done to our U13s, too.
A strong Nikolaj Schubert brought the U15 team home in 3rd place, followed by U15-1 Tom Dawson 4th and Adam Curran, improving his PB by almost a minute, 5th. Jenny Miles showed that stepping up an age group is not a problem. In a new PB of 13:50 min she was the 1st girl to finish, 6th overall. Two more U15-1s battled for 7th and 8th place, with Matthew Stevens (6th boy) just having the upper hand over Minty Allen (2nd girl). And U15-1 Alex Bartle held on the 13th place (7th girl), leaving a few athletes wanting. This fantastic performance brought us to the top of the leader board with 18 points. Quite a gap separates us from Croydon (45 points), Holland Sports (48 points), Epsom and Ewell (53 points) and Sutton and District (63 points). An absolutely fantastic start to the Downs League season for our U15s, and an inspiration for all!
Many thanks to parents and families who supported our athletes on the day, helped with the warm-up, took pictures, and helped to distribute the cookies and pretzels – without you it wouldn’t work. Thanks also to all our K&P members who, as it was our turn to organise this match, gave their time to set up and marshal the course, do the time keeping, and play the hare for the U11s. But my main thank you goes out to our 31 runners – you were fantastic. I hope to see you all for the match 2 on Sun 6th December, same place, same race times.
For detailed results, please visit the K&P website at http://www.kingstonandpoly.org/
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