Wimborne Athletic Club

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Hampshire XC League – Farley Mount – 13 October 2012

Our senior men shine amongst the showers.

We’ve come to expect excellent weather for the Hampshire League race at Farley Mount each year, and once more we arrived in glorious sunshine. The rain was to come later! With the red tent erected and the flags flying there was barely a breath of wind.

Our first race of the day was the under-13 girls – here we had the very experienced – despite her youth – Grace Copeland, leading the line, with Elise Gill, whose first XC race had been only two weeks earlier. As we’ve come to expect, Gracie was in the thick of the action. It looks like there is going to be some very competitive racing at the front of the field this season in this age-group. On this occasion Gracie had to settle for third place, but the time gaps on those in front of her are not great.

Like Grace, Tom Bourne won by a convincing margin in the Wessex League opener, and he also had to settle for third on this occasion. Making an excellent WAC XC debut was Matt Yates. He finished in the top half of a quality field. We’re looking forward to seeing Matt progress through the field as the season unfolds.

Abbie Hine, Maddie Williams and Ella Hearne formed our under-15 girls team. These girls were up for it, suitably daubed in their red and black warpaint, they were all well placed, with Abbie first home.

In the under-15s boys race, Piers Copeland came in 8th with team mate Jason Sotheran just outside the top 10, only seven seconds back. Ollie Davies had an excellent debut, just getting the better of his more experienced team-mate Tom Boulton.

It’s great to see so many Wimborne under-17 women racing. With Sharon coming into cross-country on the back of an excellent T&F season, it’s no surprise to see her lead our team home with a top 10 finish. There were fine runs from both Charlotte Bourne and Becca Skeats who have both made excellent progress over the last six months. Chloe Morris completed our under-17 women’s team.

Ryan Walbridge was our only under-17, and he had a solid run in his first race in the higher age-group. Spectating was our latest recruit in this age-group – Josh Downie. Josh saved his heroics until the following day when he finished 6th in a seniors’ 5k race in Bournemouth.

At Farley Mount, we recorded an unwanted Hampshire League first – we failed to field any senior women. Lynn Hutchings who has done so well for us in previous years is out injured and we had no back up.

The situation our ladies’ team was in contrasted sharply with that of our men. We were aided by senior team debuts from Callum Kennedy (moving up from the u17s last year) and Steve Wyatt who gave excellent support to our XC regulars, led as usual by Graeme Furley. Callum’s 32nd place is the best recorded result by a WAC senior in the Hampshire League so far. At the end of our first Hampshire League season (2008/9) our men’s team secured promotion to Division 2 where we have remained a mid-table team ever since. The performance at Farley Mount puts us second in Division 2, quite a few points ahead of the third-placed team. The top two in the division win promotion, if we can continue to field a strong spearhead to the men’s team then promotion is a possibility. Now that’s something worth pushing for!

WACers times and results were:

Under-13 Girls (84 finishers)

3 – Grace Copeland – 12:06
83 – Elise Gill – 18:20

Under-13 Boys (66 finishers)

3 – Tom Bourne – 11:21
31 – Matt Yates – 12:43

Under-15 Girls (72 finishers) 9th team

22 – Abbie Hine – 19:05
27 – Maddie Williams – 19:50
43 – Ella Hearne – 20:53

Under-15 Boys (70 finishers) 6th team

8 – Piers Copeland – 15:56
11 – Jason Sotheran – 16:03
55 – Ollie Davies – 19:11
57 – Tom Boulton – 19:34

Under-17 Women (29 finishers) – 4th team

10 – Sharon Hutchings – 21:46
15 – Charlotte Bourne – 22:30
22 – Becca Skeats – 23:50
28 – Chloe Morris – 26:05

Under-17 Men (56 finishers)

15 – Ryan Walbridge – 17:58

Senior Men (253 finishers) 2nd team in Div. 2

32 – Callum Kennedy – 37:23
63 – Graeme Furley – 39:48
90 – Steve Wyatt – 41:16
113 – Mark Copeland – 42:36
157 – John Hutchings – 44:37
183 – Rich House – 46:21
217 – Gerry Hutchings – 48:56
244 – Ian Kennedy – 53:54

Full results for the Hampshire League will be found at




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