Written by DB
The turnouts for the 2 matches,energetically assembled by Debbie & Bob - 9W & 18M - continued to discover,as we knew they would,that the standard in the Division Ones is taxing. In both leagues,we need to be sticking pins in effigies of Reigate Priory runners(with respect) since they are holding us down into the relegation zones.
On a cold and frosty,but sunny Reigate morning,Rachel Burbridge was soon to the fore in the Senior Women's race,passing the finish line after the small first lap well up,and she maintained this through to the end with a fine 16th place(19.59). Avelline Deighton 53rd(21.53) led the back-up,ahead of Debbie Raymond 70th(22.42),Catherine Sweeney-Reed 79th(23.04) & Nicky Atkins 81st(23.08) to complete the A team,which was 15th overall and 13th A team of 15. Reigate are the target with overall points of 571pts compared to our 641 - two matches left to close the gap. It was very pleasing to have an almost complete support team with relative newcomers Lois Kerrison 100th(24.18) & Frankfurt-native Barbara Mueller 111th 25.05,then regulars Liz Richardson 114th 25.14 & Johanna Gibbons 129th 26.40. 153 finished in Div 1 with a further 95 in Div 2,making 248 in all in the combined race. Six YAs ran - Rhiannon Mehta,finishing strongly,was 16th in the U17/U20 race(23.19);in the U15s,Ellie Cannon was 22nd(13.28),Kelly Randall 24th(13.49) & Linda Randall 30th(14.43) whilst in the U13s,Lucy Clacher took 26th in 13.30 with the pick of the day performance for K&P youngsters,with Francesca Currie 42nd(14.40).
In the Mens race,we were missing 3 scorers from M1,but Paul Haywood,running his first league CC race in K&P colours,showed he is returning to some of his best form with a useful 13th(27.39) and,though the immediate regular back up team was expectedly off the leading pace by some 3 mins,we again packed well. It was particularly pleasing to have 4 Under 20s running,never mind scoring,and we still have Humphrey Waddington & Craig Price,hopefully,waiting in the 'wings'. Mark Reed,pleased to be heading the pack this time,took 48th(29.42) from Andy Arbour 50th(29.50),Team Captain Mike Maranzano 59th(30.10) - sadly,Mike has been posted a long way away for the last 3 months or so of his Army Service and will be absent for the remainder of the CC season from January - & Ross Shaddick 60th(30.11). Heartening runs from U20s Michael Huntley 84th(31.19) & Alex Thomas 85th(31.20) followed and it was the redoubtable,slightly older,Ant Budarkiewicz 95th(31.50) who led in newcomer Andy Govus(U20) 96th (32.11)(despite a fall) & Ron Taylor(U20) 101st(32.34) to complete our 10 scorers. We scored 555 pts against Reigate's 527 and we are a mere 48 pts behind overall(1046-1094) at the halfway stage. BUT we remain 7th of 8,with 2 to go down! A further 8 closed in(and we had 3 more watching sheepishly!) - a much-improved outing from Steve Wright 112th(33.42),then our inimitable T/Sec,Bob McD 129th(35.08),Peter Wilkins 132nd (35.36),John Ratcliff 139th(36.49) & Matt Hyett 145th(40.30) and,finally,as the shadows lengthened,the sun sank slowly in the west and evening fell,Dave Gibbons 148th (41.51),David Barrington 149th(42.03) & Geoff Reed 150th(42.09). No comment on how many finished but in the 'Tail-of-the-Dog' Champs Dave Gibbons leads handsomely from the other qualifiers. In the YAs,despite much exhortation,only 2 appeared - Thomas Ratcliff(U15) had to pull out with a knee problem & Asher Nelson was 23rd in the U13s(28.28).
The full results,inc both First Round matches as well,can be accessed via www.rpac.org.uk and they will be on the Noticeboard at Kingsmeadow shortly.
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