Kiera D maintained her fine run of form with a race win and Avon County gold medal in the Tri-County XC Champs at Bath University last weekend.
Running conservatively throughout she sat in behind her main rivals from Westbury Harriers and Bristol &West before striking out on the final hill to cross the line with plenty to spare in the U13 race.
Harry S continues to show promise in the novice boys race and sensible running in the early stages left him with plenty in reserve to work his way through the field for a fine silver medal in the Avon competition and 4th overall.
Sam H is maturing with every race and another good performance saw him run his way into the U13 boys Avon bronze medal position finishing 7th overall.
After a difficult summer Alice B-M was back looking her old self in a high class U15 girls field. It was evident she meant business from the off as she and 4 others pulled clear early doors. Only top UK athletes Beatrice W and Dalis J finished in front of her, with Alice showing grit and determination to break clear of her main rivals in the final stages to record a fine 3rd place overall and an Avon County silver medal.
Callum S ran well in the U20’s race for an 8th place overall with Avon Bronze medal his reward.
A fantastic turn out of 48 North Somerset AC athletes enjoyed a superb coastal course (golfers equivalent of a Linx!) at the Pembrey Country Park near Swansea for the 3rd Gwent Cross Country fixture of the season.
Elliot Jeston once again led the U11 boys with an excellent 8th place and the fast improving Zeki Harston supporting him superbly just 6 seconds behind in 13th. Jacob Forsbrook also had a cracking run for his highest place so far in 20th with excellent running from bottom age athletes and newcomers Joseph Sandiford, Rowan Preen, Ben Kelly and Jacob Veale in 32nd, 34th, 39th and 75th respectively.
After being boxed in at the start, Millie Redman worked her way steadily through the field to finish a superb 6th in the U11 girls race. Willow Preen continued her improvement in the country with her best place of the season in 35th, whilst Celia Becerril-Galan finished close behind in 42nd in her first race. Bottom age Bonnie Mills and Lavanna Madge both ran well in their race to finish 58th and 63rd respectively.
U13 Ollie Campbell is learning very quickly and ran this one to perfection. He sat behind two very good athletes throughout and although too far off the race winner, he was only 5 seconds behind the 2nd placed runner for a superb 3rd. Another newcomer this season, Charles Broadhurst continued his progress with an excellent14th place finish, whilst Louie Brunsdon and the fast improving Sam Holloway finished 24th and 28th. William Sandiford also impressed in 30th closely followed by Will Maine and Ollie Andrews in 33rd and 34th. Stan Hemmings and Alex Davies completed the team scores in 58th and 61st.
Bottom age U13 Keira Devereux had a terrific race to finish 4th in a very good quality field, whilst team mates Grace Metcalf in 29th, Abigail Taylor 33rd, Mary Hemmings 34th and Poppy Adams 36th packed together well in a show of good team running.
U15 Steph Brooks recorded her best Gwent League finish this season in 18th after running with the leading girls in the early stages. Poppy Burton-Dickie looked very comfortable following Steph throughout in her first ever cross country race for a terrific 19th place. Holly Avery had another good run in 24th leading her team mates Ellie Redman, Ruth Day, Ella Johnston, Alysha Forsbrook and Victoria Pearson in 30th,34th,41st,42nd and 50th respectively.
Ben Hamblin continues to improve in his first season in the country and a 20th place was an excellent result against some very good opposition. Without Alfie Hocking, Will Scott and Ollie Lock, Callum Day had his best run to date in 40th with debtant Marco Becerril-Galan and Louis Carr in 45th and 49th respectively completing the U15 boys scores.
Matt Howard and Jaylan Bacon had their first run outs of the season in the combined U17/20 race and both can be pleased with their category 7th and 14th places respectively.
Club coach Julian Emery had his first XC race in a good while and ran brightly throughout for 56th overall and 4th in his age category, whilst Russ Forsbrook looked really comfortable in 79th place, clearly enjoying the superb track. Steve Parker 188th, Andrew Sandiford 257th, Kevin Davis 290th and Andy Devereux 314th completed the team scores. Lucy Avery was our sole lady competing and clearly enjoyed the course with her 153rd place finish from a field of 263.
North Somerset Athletics Club were well represented at the highlight of the cross country calendar, the English National Champs at Nottingham. With huge entries exceeding 600 in most age groups reaching the top 100 is a hard task. The course had everything from mud, hills and stream crossings. Star of the day was under 15 Sam Gentry who continued his excellent season showing his class on the national stage by finishing a tremendous 5th place and just 2 seconds off a podium finish. Will Cheek continued his good form coming in 290th from 379 finishers. Joe Gentry was the clubs sole entrant in the Junior men’s race finishing 129th from 211 finishers and Ruth Day was the clubs only entrant in the U15 Girls race finishing 243rd from 426 finishers. In the under 17 boys race Callum Smith ran a superb race finishing 83rd backed up well by multi eventer Jaylan Bacon (185th) and Luca Murray (213th) from the 302 finishers in this race.
The under 13 boys and girls had full teams in their races all of whom were experiencing running at a national level for the first time. As ever the boys quartet of Guy Owen (299th), Louie Brunsdon (318th), Will Maine (364th) and Emile Swanson (386th) all ran well and packed well together and were 47th in the team competition. The girls had a squad of 8 under 13s led home Daisy Manners-Lolley who battled on bravely despite losing both shoes in the deep mud with a third of the race remaining, coming home in a pleasing 236th. She was followed closely by team mates Ruby Owen (269th), Stephanie Brooks (293rd), Ella Johnston (360th), Connie Ballentine (382nd), Holly Avery (394th), Alysha Forsbrook (409th) and Isabella Clark (who was making her debut for the club in (429th) from 467 finishers. The team also came 47th in the team competition.
Conditions were challenging at the penultimate fixture of the Gwent Cross Country League in Newport last Sunday with many athletes find the going tough.
Not so for Sam Gentry though, as once again he was the star of the show, but he didn’t have things all his own way with his main rival in close pursuit throughout. However Sam had the measure of the Westbury athlete in a sprint finish for the second race in a row and pulled away with ease to take the honours once again. The final race in two weeks’ time should be a cracker with Sam requiring another race victory to take the Gwent title.
Sam’s older brother Joe could make it a family double at the final fixture after finishing 1st U20 past the post in Newport. He now trails the current leader by two points and will hoping for a repeat performance at Pembrey Park.
Callum Smith had a great run to finish 4th U17 and has strengthened his silver medal position going into the final fixture. Conditions were not well suited for big Jaylan Bacon in the same race, but he battled well through the soft ground for his 14th place.
With Alan Baker, James Rodgers and Cameron Coetzee all unavailable the senior men were always likely to lose their top place in Division 3. However, the teams lead cross country runner Josh Davis chose the right time to have his best race of the season with a fine 5th place finish. With numbers depleted talented U20 David Warnes stepped in to help the senior men with vital points for a fantastic 49th place from the 317 field.
Thanks to valuable contributions from Jonathan Flower 157th, Steve Hollier 205th and Andy Devereux 260th the senior men remain on target for a top two finish and a 2nd successive promotion.
Megan Mcrum has improved her position in every fixture this season and her 12th place moved her into the top ten athletes in her U15 category. Ruth Day continued her return to fitness with a fine 21st place with Ellie Maule and Maisie Squire completing the team scores in 40th and 41st respectively.
Stephanie Brookes continues to improve and she led the U13 girls team with her highest place finish of the season in 19th place. Ella Johnson in 32nd, Connie Ballantine 34th, Holly Avery 39th and Alysha Forsbrook 42nd all supported the team well.
Louie Brunsdon led the U13 boys in 27th with Cameron Baker-Perry 31st and Will Maine 33rd completing the team scores.
The novice races displayed plenty of promise from the clubs younger athletes with Kiera Devereux once again leading the girls team in in 15th from the 69 strong field. Poppy Adams continues to improve with another good run in 21st whilst the Amelia James and Emma O’Connor both ran well to finish 32nd and 38th respectively.
Louis Raymond ran strongly to lead his team with a fine 24th place pipping team mate Sam Hollaway in 25th place by just a second. The team worked really well together in this race with Bodie Raymond 30th and Elliot Jeston 31st locked together just 5 seconds behind Louis and Sam in a big field of 107 runners.
As the cross country season enters it’s climax the National Cross Country Championships at Nottingham is next up with a coach full of young athletes making the trip next weekend.
Sam Gentry ran arguably his finest cross country race at Truro last weekend whilst representing the Avon schools team in the South West Schools Cross Country Championships. In a winter season that has seen Sam win many a race, an individual silver may not appear such a great fete for the talented North Somerset AC youngster.
However, this was a race of the highest calibre in which he separated two National standard athletes from Cornwall. Top age athlete ‘Finn Bernie’ was the race winner with Sam beating last year’s Junior Boys English Schools Cross Country Champion ‘Harris Mier’ into third place.
Sam will now look forward with relish to the big races approaching as we enter the finale of the winter season. Other club athletes Callum Smith 42nd, Jack Wilkinson 47th, Will Fuller 49th and Jaylan Bacon 62nd also formed part of the same Intermediate Boys team that took the team Silver medal for Avon.
David Warnes was another club athlete to have a great run. He produced a fine 6 th place finish in the Senior Boys race with team mate Joe Gentry also running well to take 16 th . Both athletes contributed to helping the Avon senior boys team to the team silver.
In challenging conditions for their first SW Schools event Daisy Manners-Lolley and Abi Taylor ran solidly in the Minor girls race for 39 th and 46 th respectively, whilst Megan Mcrum also ran well for the Intermediate girls in her debut at this event to finish 45 th .
Alys Withers showed great strength in worsening conditions when others faltered to beat some very good athletes for a fine 25 th place finish.
All the athletes selected now go forward to represent Avon at the English Schools Championships at Norwich in March for what is the climax of the cross country season. Good luck to you all.
There were plenty of County medallist’s from North Somerset at the combined Avon, Somerset and Wiltshire County Cross Country Championships held at Bath University last weekend
Sam Gentry and Matt Howard took the U15 boys race by the scruff of the neck and ran away from the field with Sam taking the tape in his now customary sprint finish. The one two gave them each a county gold medal – Avon for Sam and Somerset for Matt. Jack Wilkinson also had a cracking run with a fine 4th place and with it an Avon silver medal.
In a very strong field of 37 runners Kes Pitchers 21st, Jacob Faulkner 23rd and Will Cheek in 24th place were separated by just 11 seconds to complete their teams score.
Bottom age group Ruth Day continues to improve with every race and her 10th place finish in the U15 girl’s race was just 6 seconds off a county medal.
Keira Devereux had another strong run in the U11 race and her 4th place finish was enough to secure an Avon silver medal whilst Poppy Adams continues to improve and will be pleased with her 13th place. In the boys race Herbie Cooksley in only his 2nd race secured a Somerset bronze medal with his 13th place finish, whilst Elliot Jeston finished just behind Herbie in 17th place.
Alice Bridger-Morales had a fine run to finish 4th in a very strong field of U13 girls and took the Avon bronze medal. Ruby Owen and Connie Ballentine battled hard for their respective 17th and 21st respectively whilst both were suffering the effects of heavy colds.
Louie Brunsdon and Guy Owen were both bottom age athletes in the U13 boys race and they worked well together to 27th and 28th in a field of 46, whilst Ben Hartigan in his first ever race should feel very pleased with his run in finishing 31st.
U20 David Warnes looks to be nearing his best again with a fine run to 3rd place overall in a very strong combined U17/U20 race, which was also good enough to give him the Avon county gold medal. Ultra-competitive U17 Callum Smith was a little disappointed with his run whilst not feeling 100% and his finish of 17th from a field of 28th was a below where he would normally have expected.
U20 Ellie Wallace looked a class apart in the combined U17/20 women’s race. She led the field from the off as she stormed to victory and Avon gold, with Alys Withers taking silver in 15th place overall. Alice Davies took Somerset gold in the U17 category with her 4th place overall followed by Olivia Burton in 7th and an Avon silver.
Jo Gallagher had another fine run to finish 8th place in a strong field of just 31 senior ladies, whilst Josh Davis led the senior mens race at one stage only to be undone in the final 1k, but his superb 3rd place finish from a field of 85 secured the Avon silver medal.
James Rodgers ran another high profile 10k at Telford on Sunday where he finished just 3 seconds off his PB in a time of 31.19. With training going well his coach Steve Hollier said he is confident that James can breach the elusive 31minute barrier in the new-year.
In the penultimate fixture of the five-race Gwent League series, North Somerset AC once again turned out in great numbers for the Blaise Castle estate fixture in Bristol. Despite 14 of the clubs athletes competing just the day before at the South West Schools cross country championships, each of the clubs young athletes stepped up to the challenge and performed superbly to maintain medal winning positions for 6 of the clubs teams.
U11 Harrison Garland in only his 2nd race for the club impressed with a fine 4th place, finishing just behind three experienced Welsh athletes, and will surely relish racing against them again at the final fixture. Sam Smart in his very first race at this level finished a fantastic 13th place with young Guy Owen just one place behind in 14th. Will Maine had his best run of the season as the teams 4th scorer with a fine 37th place, and debutant Emile Swanson looked very comfortable in finishing 41st. Adam Smith and ever-present Louie Brunsdon who took a heavy fall in the wooded section, finished 54th and 59th respectively to complete the team.
The U11 girls have been consistent throughout the season with 5 girls sharing the honours in each race. Ruby Owen was the leader this time to finish a very impressive 6th place, with Connie Ballentine and Grace Ashurst battling it out for 10th and 11th respectively. Charlotte Sidwell carrying an ankle injury continued the race bravely to finish in 21st place with Alice Bridger-Morales close behind in 25th. Libby Bayliss in her first race of the season ran well for a 32nd place finish with Stephanie Brooks having a seasons best of 43rd. Debutant Alysha Forsbrook looked comfortable in finishing 53rd with year 4 Matilda Ballantine just behind her in 58th. The girls were just 8 points off the leaders before this one and are hoping their performances have closed that gap going into the last race.
The U13 boys were depleted having lost Sam Gentry and Alex Collins to injury, which left Jamie Carroll and Ollie Lock to lead the team for this one. They both rose to the occasion with Carroll having his best race of the season in 8th place and Lock supporting superbly close behind in 10th. Debutant Kes Pitchers impressed in 23rd with Ryan Burton and Jonah Murray completing the team scores in 26th and 28th respectively. They’ll be hoping they may have done enough to lift them into the 2nd place overall.
The U13 girls have improved with every race and will have enhanced their medal prospects with a superb team performance. Rosie Whitehead led the race with her two Welsh individual title rivals, and despite her exertions at the schools champs the previous day, she showed great finishing power to pull away for a comfortable victory that takes her to top of the leader board outright. Lucy Maine and Nelly Bridger-Morales worked together superbly with Maine reaching the line in 5th place and Bridger-Morales immediately behind in 6th. Debutant Ruth Day ran very well to finish in 36th place with Isobel Gall close behind in 39th. Maddy and Ruby Soper in 43rd and 48th followed by year 7’s Kerrin Smith, Ellie Maul and Natasha Statham in 49th, 52nd and 53rd respectively completed the team scores.
The strong U15 girls team led their category before this fixture and despite all running the day before, they were determined to consolidate top spot. Alice Davies also held the position of individual leader and had no intention of losing her place before the last fixture. She led from the off, running in her usual aggressive fashion to leave her title contenders trailing. Her race victory along with superb team running from Lauren Ashurst, Sara Flower and Olivia Burton finishing in a remarkable 3rd, 6th and 7th positions respectively that should make the team title a formality at the final fixture.
The U15 boys were down to the bare bones for this one, but Jaylan Bacon, Luca Murray, Callum Smith and Euan Campbell packed well together as a team to finish in excellent positions of 5th, 7th, 8th and 12th respectively. This performance should be enough to keep them in the team medal position.
The U17 boys trio of Joe Gentry, David Warnes and Mike Proffitt in 5th, 7th and 8th respectively will also have done their team medal aspirations no harm at all with this spirited showing in the combined U17 & U20 race. Gentry could also have improved upon his current individual 3rd place position and will anxiously await the official results.
Alys Withers continues to impress in the U17 girls category. Running with her usual strength and determination she stayed with the leaders throughout to record a superb 3rd place in the combined U17 & U20 race, finishing well clear of the main field. Angharad Flower, finally clear of injuries, is starting to reproduce some of the form that made her one of the clubs top endurance athletes in the South West 3-4 years ago, and her 12th place finish will surely have given her great confidence for the future.
The final fixture at Aberdare on 1st March will see no fewer six of the eight junior teams in the hunt for team medals, which would no doubt secure the accolade of top junior club for the 2014/2015 Gwent League season. With a handful of the clubs athletes also in medal winning positions the Aberdare trip is definitely one not to miss!
The cross country season reached its half way point on Sunday 14th December when athletes from the counties of Avon, Somerset and Wiltshire came together at Bath University to contest the Tri Counties Championships. North Somerset AC were well represented with 25 athletes competing from U11 to U20 age groups amassing a record 13 individual medals (4 Gold, 6 Silver and 3 Bronze) as well as 3 team Gold medals.
First to face the starter were the U11 Girls and at the end of a fast run race Grace Ashurst was 2nd home (Silver medal) for Somerset and 12th overall. Close behind, Alice Bridger-Morales was 3rd home (Bronze medal) for Avon and 14th overall. Stephanie Brooks, with a battling run, was the 10th Avon athlete to finish and 35th overall.
Louie Brunsdon was the sole North Somerset AC athlete in the U11 Boys race and ran in determined fashion to finish as the 9th Somerset athlete and 23rd overall.
Next up were the U13 Girls, and representing Somerset, Lucy Maine ran a fine race to finish 2nd athlete home (Silver medal) and 4th overall. Running a tremendous race and just a few seconds behind Maine, the fast improving Nelly Bridger-Morales finished 2nd Avon athlete (Silver medal) and 5th overall. Completing the North Somerset AC team Ruby and Madeleine Soper finished in the same time as 9th and 10th Avon athletes respectively and 27th and 28th overall.
Hopes were high for the three U13 Boys and they did not disappoint, with all three finishing in the first 7 overall. A dominant Sam Gentry led from gun to tape and finished as 1st Avon athlete (GOLD medal) and overall race winner. Max Powell, home from Dubai to compete at this one, finished a close up 3rd Avon athlete (Bronze medal) and 3rd overall, and in only his second race for the club Jack Wilkinson had a fantastic run to finish 5th Avon athlete and 7th overall. These performances were further rewarded when it was announced that the boy’s had secured the Avon Club Team GOLD medal.
The U15 Girls age group is particularly strong in the South West and many of the top ranked girls from the region competed in this race. Always in the leading group and taking to the front at half way, Alice Davies continued her recent run of fine form to finish 1st Somerset athlete (GOLD medal) and overall race winner. Finishing strongly and clearly back to full fitness, Olivia Burton came in as 3rd placed Avon athlete (Bronze medal) and 7th overall. Fine packing saw Lauren Ashurst finish as 7th placed Somerset athlete and 12th overall, Sara Flower as 6th placed Avon athlete and 14th overall with Lizzie Plews placed 7th Avon athlete and 15th overall.
Jaylan Bacon was the club’s sole representative in the U15 Boys race and in his first year in this age group finished a creditable 6th placed Somerset athlete and 12th overall.
The club was well represented in the U17 Women’s race, fielding three athletes, Cecilie Andersen, Alys Withers and Angharad Flower, the first time all three have raced together this season. At the end of a tough 4.7k, British Orienteering Age Group Champion Cecilie Andersen was the 1st placed Avon athlete (GOLD medal) and 5th overall, with Alys Withers close behind as the 2nd placed Avon athlete (Silver medal) and 6th overall. A season’s best performance to date from Angharad Flower, finishing just outside the medal positions as 4th Avon athlete and 9th overall, will have encouraged her for the 2nd half of the season. Further good news arrived when it was confirmed that the girl’s performances had been rewarded with the Avon Club Team GOLD medal.
The club displayed great strength in the U17 Men’s race fielding three very capable athletes. Up with the leaders throughout, the fast improving Joe Gentry finished as 1st placed Avon athlete (GOLD medal) and 3rd overall. Back to form David Warnes was close behind as 2nd placed Avon athlete (Silver medal) and 6th overall, with Mike Proffitt returning after a month long virus absence, battling his way round to finish 6th placed Avon athlete and 18th overall. The exhaustion from navigating the 5.7k course was alleviated by the news that the boys had secured the club’s third Avon Club Team Gold medal.
In the U20 Men’s event GB Triathlete Zack Holdaway ran solidly to secure the silver medal as 2nd Avon finisher and 27th overall while former club athlete Cameron Coetzee ran a well-judged race to finish as 1st placed Avon athlete and 3rd overall.
To round off a memorable championship it was later confirmed that Lucy Maine, Sam Gentry, Max Powell, Alice Davies, Cecilie Andersen, Alys Withers, Joe Gentry and Cameron Coetzee had all gained automatic selection for the joint Avon & Somerset Team that will compete at the prestigious Inter Counties Champions held in Birmingham next March. This is a record number of club athletes to automatically qualify.
Despite a number of last minute withdrawals a full coach made the journey to Brecon for the 3rd Gwent League meeting of the season. On a bright, cold, but thankfully dry day in the shadows of the Brecon Beacons, a total of 39 athletes made it another memorable day for North Somerset AC.
First up were the U11 Boys led by newcomer Harrison Garland, who despite leading the field for two thirds of the race, had to settle for a still very promising 7th place after taking a very heavy fall in the later stages. Backing him up were bottom age group Guy Owen who finished in a solid 24th place and Louie Brunsden, who finished 34th for his best placing to date.
The U11 Girls were lying in 2nd place in the Team competition going into this race and six girls lined up at the start determined to close the gap on league leaders and local rivals from Westbury Harriers. Up with the leading group from the start, Charlotte Sidwell brought the team home in 8th position. She was closely followed by Alice Bridger-Morales, who recorded her highest placing to date in 13th place and Connie Ballentine in 16th. Strong support was provided by Ruby Owen in 35th place with Stephanie Brooks and Matilda Ballentine who finished in their bests positions to date, 39th and 49th respectively.
The U13 Boys were lying a close up 3rd in the Team competition going into this race, and first home in 3rd place was fit again Sam Gentry who ran with the leaders throughout the race. Superb packing saw the next three athletes all finish in the top 20. Alex Collings in 16th, Ollie Lock, 17th and Jamie Carroll in 19th place with a real breakthrough performance, should ensure the team remains in the medal positions. Providing great backup in his first Gwent League race, Tom Phipps finished 32nd and not to be outdone Ryan Burton recorded his best finish to date in 50th position.
The action continued with the U13 Girls race and Rosie Whitehead, the league leader after the first two races, was in the front three throughout. After a long battle with a Swansea athlete Rosie finished a very creditable 3rd place, which should be enough to maintain her leading position. Superb support was provided by her team mates with Nelly Bridger-Morales in 19th (making it a family double with another breakthrough performance), Maisie Squire 33rd, Isobel Gall 46th, Madeleine Soper 59th, Kerrin Smith 60th, Ellie Maule 70th, Ruby Soper 71st, and Lauren Smith 76th all recording their best finishes of the season to date.
With leading U15 Boy Matt Hogg still missing through injury, five of the U15 Boys rose to the occasion with a season’s best performance from all of them. Leading the team home in 13th position, Jaylan Bacon finished the width of a vest in front of Callum Smith who recorded his first top 20 finish with a 14th place. Close behind and packing well together were Adam Major 17th, Luca Murray 24th and Jack Major 34th which should ensure the team remain in the medal positions. Sam Cocker, after starting very promisingly, sadly pulled up with a hamstring tear midway through the race.
It was a depleted U15 Girls team that lined up at the start. However, short of regulars Lauren Ashurst and Sara Flower, good strength in depth exists in this group and they were determined to remain in top spot for the team competition. Individual League leader Alice Davies led the field from the off, but right on her shoulder throughout were two Cardiff athletes who had just piped her at the British Cross Challenge in Liverpool the previous week. Despite constant pressure from the duo working together, Davies showed her strength and class to pull away in the final 200 meters and recorded an outstanding race victory. Harriet Emery and Olivia Burton competed with the leading group throughout and a fine sprint finish from the pair up the home straight took them past rival athletes to finish in 11th and 12th respectively. Ever improving Lizzie Plews ran in her usual determined fashion to complete the team scoring in 24th place, which may just be enough keep the girl’s top of the leader board.
In the combined U17/U20 race the U17 Boys team were missing Mike Proffitt to illness, but Joe Gentry and a resurgent David Warnes had their best races of the season to finish 5th and 6th respectively. With both lads being first year U17’s, these were tremendous results. Not to be outdone, Alys Withers made her seasonal debut in the Gwent League and as another first year U17 she finished an extremely creditable 4th position in the combined U17/U20 Girls race.
Finally, in increasingly muddy conditions and with the temperature falling, James Rodgers, despite being thrown from his stride when taking a tumble, finished in a fine 9th place to round off a successful and enjoyable day for North Somerset AC athletes. We await publication of the full results to confirm team positions but after 3 meetings the club is in a strong position overall going into the New Year.
North Somerset AC athletes had to be at their very best to compete at a highly competitive 2nd Gwent Cross Country League fixture in Cardiff on Sunday, which was combined with the South Wales XC Championships. This they achieved and they’ll now have to wait the customary 2 to 3 weeks for official results to surface, but they’ll be hoping to have done enough to retain their teams’ lofty positions after the 1st fixture in Bridgend last month.
The U11 boys were depleted by the absence of three of their leading athletes, but the three 1st year novice boys that did race can be proud of their efforts, all finishing higher up the field than in their first race. Louie Brunsdon led the trio to finish 42nd with Luke Ashurst and Ted Deakin in 54th and 82nd respectively from a field of over 100.
The U11 girls were just three points off the leaders before this race and although Ruby Owen was missing the team did benefit from the return of Grace Ashurst from injury. Packing well together Charlotte Sidwell brought the girls home in 9th place just in front of Connie Ballentine in 11th with Ashurst just two places back in 13th. Alice Bridger-Morales ran very well to finish in 33rd with Emily Chaffe finishing 54th in her first race of the season. Stephanie Brooks and Matilda Ballentine finished strongly together in 64th and 65th from another 100 plus field.
Sam Gentry, still feeling the effects of a Flu virus, didn’t want to waste the maximum points he gained from his 1st place at Bridgend so he raced and finished this one as high up as he could have expected with a hard fought 8th place. Alex Collins and Ollie Lock finished 17th and 19th respectively with Jamie Carroll 37th and Will Cheek in 64th completing the U13 boys team.
The U13 girls 11 strong team were led superbly by Rosie Whitehead who outsprinted three girls over the last 150 metres for her best finish to date to take 2nd place. Lucy Maine with her shoulder heavily strapped ran doggedly to finish 23rd and Nelly Bridger-Morales showed great promise with an excellent 35th place in only her 2nd cross country race. Maisie Squire was next in finishing very comfortably in 46th with Ellie Atwell and Issy Gall having a battle to the line for 63rd and 64th respectively. Kerrin Smith showed huge improvement on her first race to finish 77th and will look to carry this into the next race. Ruby and Maddie Soper, Lauren Smith and debutant Ellie Maule all ran very well for the team in another 100 plus field.
The U15 boys lost lead runner Matt Hogg to injury, but a fine run by Callum Smith yielded an excellent 21st place for him to finish in front of Jaylan Bacon who in 27th narrowly held onto his place after seeing team mate Euan Campbell pass him with 100 metres to go. In a fantastic race to the line Bacon just managed to get his nose in front of Campbell at the death. Luca Murray will be pleased with his first race of the season to finish 37th place in front of another debutant Jack Major in 55th and Henry Cox in 59th who appeared to be struggling with a knee injury.
The U15 girls always pack well together as a team and this race was no exception. Alice Davies continued her recent fine form with another outstanding run in which she and her opponent from Wells led from the off. Davies was just out done in the final 200 metres, but will be happy with a fine 2nd place. Lauren Ashurst continues to improve finishing just one place outside the top 10, with Olivia Burton continuing her return to form in 16th after a long injury lay off. Harriet Emery in 20th, Sara Flower on 24th and Lizzie Plews in 26th completed the team scoring, which should be enough to retain their 2nd place overall.
The U17 boys maintained their consistency and once again should have done enough to maintain their 3rd place overall. In a combined race with the U20’s Joe Gentry finished a fine 15th place with a typically strong run and was followed in by David Warnes in 29th who was just two places in front of Michael Proffitt. The U17 girls sole runner Cecilie Andersen in her first race of the season can be very pleased with her 11th place in another combined race with the U20 girls.
Senior man James Rodgers made a last minute decision to run this one following his Weston Half Marathon victory just the previous weekend. In a high quality race of just under 400 runners he showed no sign of heavy legs as he worked his way well through the field and even found a terrific sprint finish at the end to take a superb 6th place. This follows his 10th place in the first fixture and moves him up to 5th overall.
A record 41 Junior athletes represented North Somerset AC at the first Gwent League meeting held in Bridgend on Sunday 12th October. The team was a mixture of debutants (11 athletes were competing for the first time) and more experienced athletes and it was the youngest age group, the Under 11’s, that got the season underway.
Seven U11 boys lined up in a large field of 112 athletes. All ran well in a fast run race with particularly promising performances from Guy Owen who finished in 23rd place closely followed by Dan Whitehead in 32nd place. Louie Brunsdon, Will Maine, Ted Deakin, Adam Smith and Luke Ashurst can all be proud of their debuts and it will be interesting to follow the progress of this group as they gain more race experience.
Six U11 girls lined up in a very competitive race and with four top 30 finishes from Charlotte Sidwell 7th, Ruby Owen 12th, Connie Ballentine 15th and Alice Bridger-Moralis 23rd the future looks very bright in this age group. Stephanie Brooks and Matilda Ballentine finishing halfway through another very large field of runners completed the team.
The six U13 boys were an equal mix of experienced athletes and newcomers and it was the 2013 U11 Gwent League champion, Sam Gentry, who led from gun to tape for a very impressive victory. He was followed by newcomer Alex Collins in 12th place and Ollie Lock, making his debut in this age group, in 13th place. Another newcomer ‘Jamie Carroll’ finished strongly in a creditable 25th place. Ryan Burton with a terrific final 300 metres and debutant Daniel Nutting having a sound run completed the team. A top three team prize looks to be realistic target for this age group if they continue to perform well in future races.
The eight U13 girls were also a mix of experienced and inexperienced athletes and it was two of the experienced athletes, Lucy Maine and Rosie Whitehead, who led the team home. Both girls recorded their first top 10 Gwent League finishes with Lucy in 6th place and Rosie in 7th, it promises to be an exciting season for the two girls. Maisie Squire, a newcomer to cross country, was next home in 44th place and with promising performances from the Soper sisters ‘Maddie and Ruby’ with the Smith sisters ‘Lauren and Kerrin’ this age group this looks a team to watch out for in future races.
Only 4 boys contested the always highly competitive Under 15 boy’s race but they produced four highly competitive performances that auger well for the future. Matt Hogg followed up his breakthrough season on the track with a first top 10 Gwent League finish in 5th place. Jaylan Bacon and Callum Smith, both making their debuts in this age group, finished in very promising 17th and 24th positions respectively. Not to be outdone, Euan Campbell produced his best Gwent League finish in 29th position. With some reinforcements from other Under 15 boys in the club this age group could challenge for team honours by the end of the season.
The six Under 15 girls representing the club included four medallists from the previous two years Midland and National Road Relays so hopes were high for some prominent performances. The girls didn’t disappoint in recording five top 20 finishes and a highly promising return to racing following a long injury layoff from last year’s Gwent League U13 individual Silver medallist Olivia Burton.
Alice Davies led the race at a tremendous pace until part way through the second lap before the pace told and she finished a close up 4th. The other girls packed well throughout the first lap before moving through the field on the second lap. Lauren Ashurst recorded her first Gwent League top 10 finish in 9th place closely followed by Hattie Emery in 11th place and, not to be outdone, Sara Flower and Lizzie Plews finished in the top 20 in 17th and 18th positions respectively. Running a superb race after missing most of the track season with injury, Olivia Burton crossed the line fit and well in 25th place.
With four of the girls in their first year in this age group this looks a formidable team for the foreseeable future.
Three boys competed in the joint Under17/Under 20 age group run over a strength sapping 6K and all performed with great promise. First home in 14th place was Joe Gentry who is in his first year in the Under 17 age group. He was followed in 23rd place by David Warnes who was hampered by a foot injury. Debutant Mike Proffitt was close behind in a highly creditable 25th place. These were tremendous performances in what is always a very tough race when the age groups are combined.
James Rodgers in the senior mens race brought his fine form from recent road events into the cross country. He ran strongly from the off and finished in a superb 10th place from a very strong field of over 350 runners in a race that included the South, West and East Wales XC Championships. Triathlete Llewellyn Holmes finished only 30 seconds behind Rodgers with a very impressive 20th place finish, but injuries and unavailability of several top athletes from Steve Holliers senior group was a blow to the team securing maximum points on this occasion.
The final athlete to compete was Angharad Flower who although eligible to compete in the combined Under17/Under20 girl’s race elected to run in the Senior Ladies event and finished in an excellent 90th place.
Congratulations to all the athletes who competed. The next cross country fixture is the Bristol Cross at Ashton Court on 25th October.
Full U11B results: Guy Owen 23rd, Dan Whitehead 32nd, Louie Brunsdon 50th, William Maine 65th, Adam Smith 71st,, Luke Ashurst 73rd, Ted Deakin 111th.
Full U11G results: Charlotte Sidwell 7th, Ruby Owen 12th, Connie Ballentine 15th, Alice Bridger-Moralis 23rd, Stephanie Brooks 53rd, Matilda Ballentine 70th.
Full U13B results: Sam Gentry 1st, Alex Collins 12th, Ollie Lock 13th, Jamie Carroll 25th, Ryan Burton 58th, Daniel Nutting 86th.
Full U13G results: Lucy Maine 6th Rosie Whitehead 7th Maisie Squire 44th Elleanor Atwell 71st Ruby Soper 72nd Madeleine Soper 73rd Kerrin Smith 83rd Lauren Smith 96th
Full Under 15B results: Matt Hogg 5th, Jaylan Bacon 17th, Callum Smith 24th, Euan Campbell 29th,
Full Under 15G results: Alice Davies 4th,, Lauren Ashurst 9th, Hattie Emery 11th, Sara Flower 17th, Lizzie Plews 18th, Olivia Burton 25th.
Full Under 17B results: Joe Gentry 14th, David Warnes 23rd, Mike Proffitt 25th.
The ‘Weather Gods’ were not smiling us on, unfortunately. With it raining for just two hours during the whole day, extremely frustrating that it chose one of those hours as the time of the Relays!
The year 7-8 race in particular was met with heavy rainsand wind. Parents and spectators huddled against the Science Block at Clevedon School or under the tent whilst the athletes and officials got stuck in! Over 100 children, dressed in fancy dress or not, enjoyed the event, despite the conditions. Terrific effort by everyone, and a nice end to the Cross-Country season.
Thank you to ‘The Club at Cadbury House’ and ‘Promotional Peaks’ for supplying goodie bags and pennants for the fastest leg Athletes. As always, much appreciated!
The full results can be seen here and Fastest Leg runners as follows;
Year 2-4 Boys – Guy Owen 2;58
Year 2-4 Girls – Naomi Holt 3;19
Year 5-6 Boys – Oliver Lock 4;25
Year 5-6 Girls – Ellie Redman 4;56
Year 7-8 Boys – Adam Major 5;27
Year 7-8 Girls – Lucy Maine 5;42
The best fancy dress prize went to the ‘Pretty Incredibles’. A photo is in the Gallery section!
The wackiest name prize was given to ‘Queen Bees in Onesies’
Another successful event, thanks to all helpers, athletes and supporters!