This year’s County Cross Country Championships at Basildon’s Gloucester Park produced the usual mix of highs and lows, individual and team medals and heart-warming performances that demonstrate the true spirit of club running.The size of the fields seemed smaller than in previous years, ‘flu and the bitterly cold weather no doubt an influence. A light dusting of snow fell early in the day and with the ground still mostly frozen, the going was fast even if the runner’s limbs found it hard to respond.
The brief indoor track and field season has recently got underway with a number of WGEL athletes showing early season form. There was news of good early season sprint form, as well as good performances and five medals including three golds from the first part of the Southern Indoor Championships held at Lee Valley on Sunday.
Our men's team won bronze medals in a tight team result covering teams 2-4 in the Essex CC Championships at Basildon today, and our women's team were 5th. Kevin Murphy (6) and Tom Phillips (15) were the top performers for the men. Diana Kennedy (12), Kat Gundersen (14) and Bernie Pritchett (16) were our leading women. The day was very cold and the ground hard, with the severe hill providing a very specific test for the athletes.
Our men went into the race hoping and aiming to defend the title which they won in 2008, but three of our key men underperformed, and freely acknowledged that that was the case.
Woodford Green with Essex Ladies athletes Tara Bird and Linzi Snow recently
attended an Aviva sponsored training day hosted by their mentor Dame Kelly
Holmes in her home town of Tonbridge. The girls have both been part of Holmes'
successful 'On Camp with Kelly' mentoring initiative, supported by Aviva, since
2006. 'On Camp with Kelly' aims to help the next generation of British middle
distance athletes to achieve their potential.