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Aldershot, Farnham and District AC

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23/24 Jan

Mike Neighbour

Both senior winners at the Hampshire Schools cross country championships, held in Southampton on Saturday, were runners from Aldershot, Farnham & District.  Jack Boswell beat club mate Nathan Gibson to the boys’ title and Daisy D’Santos triumphed in the girls’ race.  The girls’ title at the Surrey Schools champs in Reigate went to AFD’s Niamh Brown.  Katie Shiel-Rankin came third. Other medallists from the club were Robbie Coupland (Hampshire intermediate boys’ silver), Stacey Burrows (Hampshire intermediate girls’ bronze), Max Heyden, silver, and Marcus Shantry, bronze, in the Surrey intermediate boys’ event, Luke Van Oudtshoorn (Surrey junior boys’ bronze), plus Sam Bodoano and Alfie Spear, silver and bronze respectively in Surrey’s race for year seven boys.

Absent from the Hampshire meeting was Lucy Pygott because she was representing England at a cross country meeting in Spain on Sunday.  She contested the under-20 women’s event and, despite being a bottom-year u17, finished third in a race won by the host nation’s Celia Anton Alonso who competed over 800 metres in the last edition of the Youth Olympic Games (2014).
At the latest round of the British Athletics Cross Challenge, in Cardiff, Louise Small was runner-up to Swansea’s Caryl Jones who, like the AFD athlete, has endured several injuries in recent years.  The Welsh woman was fifteenth at the European cross country championships of 2012.  Stockport’s Elle Vernon, 22nd in last month’s Europeans, was third in Cardiff on Sunday.