Superb Surrey League Start
HW's cross country runners made a brilliant start to their Start Fitness Surrey League programme on Saturday with the Senior Men and U17 Girls teams taking the honours and teenager Georgina Clarke winning the U15 Girls race.
The senior men were outstanding in their 5-mile race, staged in unseasonably sunny and warm yet blustery weather over a slightly unfamiliar course in the north end of Richmond Park. Last season the title went down to the wire with Kent AC clinching it in the final race, so the team were determined to throw down the gauntlet and get off to a flying start.
With ten to score, Kent AC started well, with four finishers in the top seven, however HW's men showed greater strength in depth, packing their ten scoring runners into the first 37 home. In comparison Kent’s top 10 ranged through to 52nd place. It was enough to tilt the scales as the HW team won by 30 points to post a record low score of 183 points.
Howell Craske led the team home finishing eighth of the 229 runners in 26:44, just nine seconds ahead of Finn Johnson, who posted his best-ever league performance, finishing in 10th place. Tom Jervis, running in the league for the first time, was two seconds behind in 11th, followed by Richard McDowell (14th in 27:09), Fred Slemeck (15th in 27:14), Jonny Cornish (18th in 27:26), Alex Bellew (19th in 27:32), Will Russell 24th in 27:46, Belal Ahmed (27th in 27:55) and Joe Clark (37th in 28:15).
With 39 runners in action, HW also had more competitors than any of the other eight clubs and, underlining their strength, also took the B team honours for the first time, scoring 126 points to Kent AC’s 130, with Jonny Earl 40th in 28:21, David Lewin 47th in 28:48, Rhys Boorman 61st in 29:26 and Kieran White 65th in 29:33. U20 Henry Silverstein, competing in his first senior Surrey League race was 80th in 30:08 followed by Tom Buckley (82nd in 30:12), Rob Tuer (90th in 30:29), Neil Fraser (95th in 30:44), David Grima (98th in 30:51) and Stephen Hough (124th in 32:11).
Earlier in the day there was an excellent turnout from both youngsters (below left) and seniors (below right) in the Start Fitness Surrey Ladies League meeting on Wimbledon Common. Georgie Clarke (left) ran out an impressive winner of the U15/U17 Girls race in 16:47, winning by 13 seconds. The U17 Girls won their match thanks to Johanna Tofte (fifth in 18:21), Rebekah Riches (seventh in 18:31), Selma Hegvold (ninth in 18:34) and Niamh Thomson (12th in 19:08). Behind Georgie in the U15 match Ellen Weir (eighth in 17:49), Millie Thorpe (24th in 19:27) and Milly Hodgson (26th in 19:34) helped the team to fourth place.
Claire Grima had a nightmare journey en route to Wimbledon Common when she found herself on the wrong train and missed the start, however she ran in the later Division Two race over an identical course and was the comfortable winner in 26:50, a time which would have placed her eighth in the Division One race. As it was, Gina Galbraith led the team home finishing 14th of the 234 runners in 27:20 with Eileen Toomer (17th in 27:33), Elena Dauster (43rd in 28:42), Zoe Pike (44th in 28:42) and Victoria Johnston (78th in 30:15) completing the scorers.
The U13 Girls team of Lauren Armitage (13th in 10:05), Ore Adewale (22nd in 10:24), Bailey O’Leary (33rd in 10:34) and Anna Barker (34th in 10:35) finished a solid fifth. Hercules Wimbledon had more runners than any other club closing in three teams. The B and C teams were ninth and 14th out of 22.
In the young athletes races in the Men's League in Richmond Park, Cameron Elliott (40th in 16:22) led the U13 Boys team to eighth place and Hector Revill (22nd in 14:29) headed the U15/U17 team to 10th place.
Start Fitness Surrey Cross Country League:
Div 1, Match 1, Senior Men (Richmond Park): 1 Hercules Wimbledon 183pts; 2 Kent AC 213; 3 Thames Hare & Hounds 347; 4 Guildford & Godalming 385; 5 Belgrave 466; 6 Herne Hill 487; 7 South London Harriers 578; 8 Ranelagh 615; 9 Striders of Croydon 821. Full Men's results
(Highest scores win in the junior matches)
U13 Boys: 1. Epsom & Ewell 206; 2. Herne Hill Harriers 205; 3. Belgrave 190... 8. Hercules Wimbledon 96.
U15/U17 Boys: 1. South London Harriers 346; 2. Walton 338; 3. Herne Hill Harriers 321...10. Hercules Wimbledon 170.
Full Boys results
Boys/Men's results: Power of Ten
Div 1, Match 1, Senior Women (Wimbledon Common): 1. Thames Hare & Hounds 48pts; 2. South London Harriers 135; 3. Clapham Chasers 140.... 8.Hercules Wimbledon 196 Full results
U17 Women: 1. Hercules Wimbledon 33pts; 2. Guildford & Godalming 45; 3. Epsom & Ewell 48. Full results
U15 Girls: 1. Herne Hill Harriers 32pts; 2. Guildford & Godalming 38; 3. Epsom & Ewell 58; 4. Hercules Wimbledon 59. Full results
U13 Girls: 1. Guildford & Godalming 37pts; 2. Herne Hill Harriers 50; Epsom & Ewell 59; 4. Reigate 78; 5. Hercules Wimbledon 102. Full results
Girls/Women's results: Power of Ten
Lisa Laws made a winning return in the Whitstable 5km parkrun on Saturday in taking the women’s race in 17:27. Since she last ran there four years ago, she has suffered injury and had a son, Finlay. U15 Eloise Davies was first female home at Marlow winning in 21:42. Peter Lee headed home 14 Hercules Wimbledon runners on Wimbledon Common finishing seventh of the 543 competitors in 18:55.