Written by DB
A sharp overnight frost and the dawn chorus greeted the very early-rising Course Markers,but by race start had evolved into a nice little number for runners and officials(and gratitude as always to them),albeit a trifle slippery in places.
Some welcome new schools participated,though some regulars were conspicuous by their absence,thus only confirming the varying enthusiasm for real cross-country amongst pupils and staff,and,of course,the ever-present counter-attractions of the round and oval balls.
The total number of runners was just short of the 150 mark,in keeping with recent field sizes.
The Under 11 Girls kick-started the meeting and it was newcomers St Agatha's who cleanswept the Frank Schubert Trophy,with Madeleine Nutt a clear winner in their colours.Christ Church & Putney High collected the minor medals,and it was Gaby Hobday who took the K&P championship for the Peter Townsend Trophy,ahead of Ellie Manhire.
Race 2,for their male counterparts,again for Frank Schubert silverware,saw local establishment,Rokeby School,in the ascendancy,with an 11pt winning score,ahead of Christ Church & St Agatha's.Wilfred Goodhart(Rokeby) took individual honours from the K&P championship-winning Joe Lavender(Steve Hall Trophy). The latter headed Ollie Phelps & Rory Vassall for medals,with the K&P race featuring 8 contestants.
The U13 Girls event was dominated by Putney High,with their Lucy Scotts and Polly Nash in the van,ahead of debuting K&P member,Jenny Miles,who took the club's race,both teamwinners and Miss Miles taking home a Stan Belton memorial trophy.Behind Jenny were the Thompson twins in a club field of seven.
Newcomers,John Fisher School from Purley,and local educators,Rokeby,had a fine team tussle in the U13 Boys event,with the former nicking the Doris Holland Award by 10pts to 11(3 to score).Patrick Lucas(JFS) was a very comfortable winner in easily the fastest recorded time for his group on the current course(7m58),with Max Cooper(Rokeby) in 2nd. Matthew Stevens,from Canbury S. which overlooks the Park,acquired the club's Jimmy Wood Trophy.
Race 5,for U15 Girls,was the sparsest of the day,but Gaby Miles ran a spanking time to win very easily,and take the club's Stan Belton Trophy for good measure,from Dominika Wrobel. Putney High took their version of the Stan Belton awards in the team race.
Finally,the U15 Boys race,augmented by the club's older women's age groups champs.,was better supported than usual,thanks to John Fisher in particular.They took the Bert Holland Trophy honours back to Purley,ahead of Tiffins & Canbury. The race itself gave U17 George Corcoran chance to display his recent improvement with an emphatic win, and he took the Jimmy Wood Trophy from Ciaran Costello & Jonny Miller. The U15 Jimmy Wood 'pot' was won by Nikolaj Schubert;the rarely-contested Doris Belton U20W's went to Maddy Hardwick,celebrating her first Surrey selection,whilst Rachel Burbridge(SW - Doris Nice Trophy) and Susanne Dietrich(Vets - Parents Trophy) comfortably retained their respective awards from last winter.
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