On Tuesday morning three cross country teams competed in the 1st round of the National competition at Shipwrights Woods, Benfleet. Pitched against tough competition and on a challenging course, all the students ran hard and to their full potential.
There were some outstanding individual performances but essentially this is a team competition. Each team consisted of 6 students combined either from Years 7 and 8 (Juniors) or Years 9 and 10 (Inters). The first four finishers calculate the overall team score.
The Junior Girls kicked things off in the first race. In a highly competitive field the girls ran extremely well to finish 4th overall. All the girls finished relatively close together. Georgie Copeman led the girls home in 10th position, followed by Lauren Smart (13th), Evie Andrews (18th), Summer Thorpe (19th), Kate Montgomery (22nd) and Samantha Wiseman (49th).
The Junior Boys followed up the strong performance from the girls with a tremendous performance themselves. Joe Hudson led the team home in 8th position and was quickly supported by Sam Richardson (10th) and Oliver Coker (13th). The vital forth runner to finish was William Wheeler (30th). George Williamson (31st) followed William into the finishing funnel and Elliot Ward brought the team home in 41st place. Overall the JB team finished in 3rd position behind The Brentwood School and Fitzwimarc.
The next race saw the Inter Boys take to the course. The Inter Boys team is comprised of boys from Years 9 and 10. Our team was dominated by Year 9s with only one solitary Year 10 in the team. Therefore qualifying for the next round was always going to be difficult. As the races progressed the course became more demanding as the mud began to thicken across the course. Elliot Capel ran superbly to finish 2nd, closely behind the winner from start to finish, the pair ran away from the field to leave a significant gap to those behind. Craig Wheeler finished in 8th position, a fantastic performance from a Year 9. The rest of the team finished in mid field, Tom Radziusz (30th), Luke Bray (34th) and Harry Ricks (41st). Unfortunately Sam Fullick sustained an injury early in the race and had to pull out. Overall the Inter Boys finished in 5th position.