The club had five athletes selected to represent Essex/Hertfordshire at this famous event. Cloudy skies greeted our runners at the Norfolk Showground where the going underfoot was firm and a fairly fast course was the order for the day.
First off were the Junior Boys over 4k, with a starting field of 350 runners. Kai Boggon was up with the leaders early on and one should feel proud of a our lad, never afraid to have a go and he should be pleased with 37th in his first race at these champs. We know Kai was hoping for higher but the experience will have done him the world of good. Kai was 2nd home for Essex. Kieran Allgood only started running with us last autumn and was really chuffed to reach these championships. Kieran was confident he would give it his best .He more than did that by placing 84th and 3rd scorer for Essex - a fine run and a great way to conclude his first cross country season with us. After missing out through injury last year which prevented him running in these championships, 800 metre runner Sidnie Ward also had a fine run for 94th, and 4th scorer for Essex, and just a couple of seconds behind Kieran. Essex were 7th from 45 counties, with all three lads scoring.
In the Junior Girls race over 3,250 metres, Grace and Clare Malcolm toed the line representing Hertfordshire. Both girls had good starts and at the halfway point were inside the top 20. Clare managed to move through from that point to finish 12th, an agonising 10 seconds from an international call-up. Clare was disappointed to miss out and did say that, had it been further, she feels she would have made the top 8. Grace, who had suffered very slight stress fractures on two toes, was fine on the warm up and elected to run in trainers. Grace should be pleased with 60th given her slight injury, and at least she came through unscathed.
I have travelled to many championships of this nature in the past and have never seen all our runners inside the top 100. They must all be hugely congratulated.