Wimborne Athletic Club

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Mud, mud, glorious mud   21 February 2015           

Charlie Davies reports from the Nationals at Parliament Hill.

An early alarm 5.30am, a quick breakfast and we were off to the best cross-country race of the year. The bus left Wimborne on time with everyone on board except for Dan who was unwell. On the way we went past the home of English rugby and the home of English football, on our way to the home of English cross-country Parliament Hill.

When we arrived the weather was great and the view from the top of Hampstead Heath was fantastic, The London Shard looked great, as did the London Eye and Gherkin. We set up the red armys tent amongst tents and flags of every colour, and then it was off to walk the course. The course was everything we expected with plenty of hills and lots of mud, even walking the course proved tricky for Jack! Parts of the course was so deep with mud, it was like the shallow end of a swimming pool, with even the Wellie boots meeting their match. Many metres of duct tape and 15mm spikes were the order of the day. We were in pens for the start and ours looked ok, having said that we all got swamped going up the hill. Quite a cross-country!

The first race off was the under-17 women, we had no runners in this race as Maddie [Williams] was in Birmingham watching/helping as the Mobot set a new world record. Not a bad excuse!!

Next off were the under-15 boys, Tom [Bourne] led the way and came in 51st (best finish of the day), Joey [Kelliher] coming 114th had a good run, coming in next was Michael [Johnson] 176th (who still has another year in this age group) with a solid run, then close behind, having one of the best runs of the day came Matt [Yates] 181st. Total runners 371.

The third race of the day was the junior women; we had two runners, the ever dependable Charlotte [Bourne]  who came 99th and Scooter [Becca Skeats], who is training very well, came 120th. Total runners 130.

The next race was the under-13 girls, in which we had the most Wimborne runners competing. Abbie [Lovering] running well, and having a great run came 123rd, then next in was Beth [Kingswell-Farr] who had a solid run and came 156th.  Holly [Nixon]  193rd followed by Anna [Kelliher] 216th had good runs. It was good to see Hannah [Fairchild] 258th out at a cross-country, Jess [Bourne]  305th and Fern [Morrison] 369th were next in and the team was made up with Issie [Kingswell-Farr] 396th (the race distance was slightly further than her normal 200m). Total runners 433.

Up next were the under-17 men, leading the way was Jason [Sotheran] who was running with an injured foot and came an amazing 81st, next was Piers [Copeland] doing very well coming 117th, Sam [Davies] managed to stay on his feet this time and had a good run and coming 207th.Tom [Boulton] suffered an injury and did not manage to finish.  Total runners 280.

The under-15 girls found Lucy [Ballam] 85th in the unusual situation of running without Grace [Copleand], Lucy [Anderson] or Elise [Gill], and yet still she had a good race but Im sure shell be looking forward to having the other girls back next time. Total runners 379.

The junior men were next up with only Ryan [Walbridge], 108th, racing for Wimborne, he had a solid run running the furthest distance of the day. Total runners 190.

Under-13s pre-race team photo, with Zach, Tom, Jack, Ian, Max and Charlie

The last race we had any runners in was the under-13 boys, Zach {Fenwick] 236th had his best race of the year showing the benefit of all that hard effort hes put in, Max [Meadwell] 241st was next in followed closely by Tom [Morrison] 259th then Jack [Moss-Willcox] all the time improving came 265th. Then came Charlie (me!) 303rd taking a bit out of Sams textbook and fell down for a closer look at the mud. Total runners 389.  

We watched the start of the Senior Mens race and loved the charge up the hill, unfortunately we had no runners in the senior races but I hear that Ian, Pete, Mark and Dad felt they missed out on all the mud and hills and a race with over 2,000 finishers, and want to do it next year. Roll on 2016!!!


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