The third round of North West London Young Athletes Cross Country races took place at Trent Country Park on an initially sunny, but increasingly colder afternoon. This being cross country, the race distances were very approximate and turned out to be a lot further than the previous North West London Young Athletes races. TVH had 18 young athletes competing, some enjoying the longer distances and tougher course, others finding it hard going. Continue reading TVH’s U13 and U15 Girls Dominate at Trent Park
Good weather and good course conditions brought some good performances from the Valley men in Saturday’s London Cross Country Championships at Parliament Hill, as Chris Smith finished 2nd to win a silver medal and the TVH men finished 3rd team to win bronze team medals.
Bookended by lovely autumn days, Saturday dawned with pouring rain. A smaller than usual Scrubs Parkrun group braved the weather circuiting home territory, led by Sarah Johnson running really fast. Sitting in the clubhouse after did not offer great prospects for the afternoon’s Met League at Stevenage. Always a bit of a slog round the North Circular and up the A1, this Saturday seemed worse than usual, making for little spare time on arrival. Valiant Barrie had been waiting in the café, thinking we were all going to be no shows, but as ever patiently and carefully distributed the numbers as we trickled up to the starting area. Fortunately the rain had by that time eased off to an intermittent drizzle. Phil hurried up with the last of the men, the club tent in hand, providing very welcome shelter for changing and racetime storage.
Amazingly, for all the earlier heavy rain, the course was firm and fast underfoot, the deluge having been soaked into the long desiccated ground, as at the Scrubs. Much better organised than last year when the switchbacks caused confusion and corner cutting, this year’s course was simple, with a shorter first lap, followed by two full laps for the ladies, and 3 for the men, around the entire periphery of the meadowland. With only minor undulations and nicely mowed grass paths for a good part of the course it was fast going all the way round.
The second Metropolitan League cross country event of the season was perhaps a taste of things to come for the winter.
With rain throughout the day it was inevitable that some athletes had more pressing arrangements on the day. Or perhaps they were saving themselves for the London Youth Games next Saturday.
In the first race of the day, the under 11 boys and girls 1500m we only had one TVH representative. Henry Turner ran very well to finish in 17th place. Next race was the under 13 boys 3000m. This proved to be our best result of the day with Basil Rock finishing 5th and Alfred Turner (not related) doing very well to finish 9th.
An annual trip to Mansfield for the English National Cross Country Relay championships saw an improved performance on last year’s race for both the Valley men’s and ladies teams on Saturday.
The standard and size of the field continues to increase in both races and a strong men’s team performed well to match their 2012 result of 23rd place out of 166 finishing teams, while a ladies team missing some star athletes also did well to finish inside the top 30 in 28th place out of 123 finishing teams.