Hants Cross Country Champs
Louise Small beat former national cross country champion Louise Damen as she retained her Hampshire senior title on Saturday. The Aldershot, Farnham & District runner had trailed Winchester & District’s Damen since the start of the five-mile race around the grounds of Fairthorne Manor, near Botley, but with about a furlong remaining Small closed the gap, then went straight past to lead into the home straight and powered away for victory by five seconds.
Harry Hyde was another AFD athlete to keep a title. He beat club mate Ryan Martin, also by five seconds, in their under-13s’ event. They were joined by Harry Ware, who was ninth, and Bailey Roberts, thirteenth, for victory in the team competition. Jack Boswell took the u20s’ crown by finishing 23 seconds ahead of Jersey Spartan’s Sam Maher, the man he beat for last year’s u17s’ crown. Daniel Shattock defeated James Lewis of Winchester, last year’s bronze medallist, to win the u11 boys’ competition by seven seconds. AFD won the u15 boys’ gold medals with Elliot Pocock, the individual bronze medallist, Theo Doran, fifth, Luke Hillary, fourteenth, and Xavier Booth, sixteenth. Tad Dicker took a gold medal as the highest placed man over 50 in the senior race.
Five sets of team of team golds were won by AFD in the Surrey championships at Croydon’s Lloyd Park on Saturday. The club’s u15 boys also provided the individual champion, Luke van Oudtshoorn. He was accompanied by Charlie Kershaw, fourth, Joe Blacknell, tenth, and Eion Canning, fifteenth. Niamh Brown won the combined race for u17 and u20 women where she was joined by Gabi Eglen and Nancy Scott for the team honours. Max Heyden lost out to Sutton & District’s Ricky Lutakome (English Schools intermediate 800 metres bronze medallist last summer) in the battle for individual gold but his silver medal set up AFD for the team triumph with Ollie Percival, fourth, Marcus Shantry, fifth, and Guy Tucker, tenth in the u17 men’s event. The club’s u13 boys were led to their victory by the individual bronze medallist, Ed Henderson, who was followed by Sam Bodoano, fifth, Alfie Spear, sixth, and Rudi Morrell, tenth. Nathan Gibson, sixth, Rian McCawley, eighth, and Harry Grace, ninth, comprised the only complete team in the u20 men’s contest.