Above - The u13 Girls race gets off to a frantic start - photo by Gary
Wells City Harrier athletes were out in force at the prestigious South West Regional Cross Country Championships this past Sunday, 2nd January, 2022. The event was held at RNAS Merryfield, near Ilton, and drew in individual runners and Club teams from across the region stretching from Gloucestershire down to Cornwall.
At stake was individual Regional glory, and Medals, as well as Club Team medals and with selected athletes also running for their County Athletic Associations in the SW Inter-Counties match. Many of the Wells Harriers had been selected to represent Somerset, but some were running (& winning) for other neighbouring Counties too.
The Harriers were undoubtedly the overall top Club team from Somerset with the combined force of the Wells & Yeovil sections coming together nicely to have the greatest number of entrants. The Club also saw one individual age group winner, u13 Will Birchall, one bronze medal winner in u13 Daisy Abernethy, and a 2nd place by Bibi Abernethy in the u11 girls development race, as well as various age group team medals.
Read on for full details and an update on the Street 5k & junior races coming up next Wednesday 12th January. If you are a Harrier member, or parent of a Harrier junior, and haven't yet volunteered in some role so far this membership year, then the last three Street races (Jan-March) give you the opportunity to help out.
Below - some of the u11 Harriers racing away - photo by Ben
In terms of Club success, the Harriers won the SW team Gold for the u13 girls team and was 2nd & team Silver for both the u15 girls and u17 men's teams. 4 athletes to count for the team awards.
According to Jon James, the course was to his liking… “good course though, good mixture of sections on grass and in woods, quite technical with tight turns and some short hills.”
(Above: Bibi Abernethy ran a great race for 2nd in the u11 grls race - photo by Martin of TotallyFocused)
U11 girls & boys
Bibi Abernethy was 2nd in the sprint finish, recording the same time as the winner, with Amelia Ashman 20th and fellow Harrier Lois Murray just behind in 22nd.
For the boys Jack Barker was 8th with Otto Stahl 19th and Ruari Gordon 20th
(Below 1: Lois Murray - photo by Gary)
(Below 2: Ruari Gordon - photo by Martin of TotallyFocused)
U13 girls – Gold medal top Club team in South West
Daisy Abernethy 3rd
Ellie Birchall 8th
Tabitha Olivier 16th
Iona Murray 17th
Isobel Stacey 21st
Isabelle Whittle 36th
Jessica Spolton 47th
Darcy Walker 52nd
(Below 1: Darcy Walker (in Somerset County vest) shows determination at the start - photo by Gary)
(Below 2: Daisy Abernethy (1) & Ellie Birchall (4) in the background ran well through the wooded section to finish high up - photo by Gary)
U13 boys - 6th Club team in the SW
William Birchall was 1st - he ran away from the rest of the field with over a 20 second gap on 2nd place; Congratulations to the South-West Champion. Next stop the Nationals?
Arthur Fisher 17th
Leyton Finn 44th
Harley Walker 62nd
(Below (1): Will Birchall shows good form sprinting to win -photo by Gary)
(Below (2): Leyton Finn running hard towards the end - hhoto by Martin)
(Below (3) Harley Walker running to the finish line - photo by Gary)
U15 girls – 2nd Club in South West - Silver Medal winners
Daisy Davies 13th
Lucy Bickerton 16th
Macy Noad 20th
Macey Burge 28th
Lily Greaves 46th
Rosie King 57th
(Below 1: Daisy Davis in the Somerset County AA vest - photo by Martin)
(Below 2: Lucy Bickerton in the Somerset County AA vest - photo by Martin)
(photo 3: Lily Greaves - photo by Martin)
U15 Boys – 2nd Club team, winning the Silver medals in the SW region
Henry Birchall 11th
Finlay Downes 14th
Tom Webb 27th (new member)
Reuben Cawley 34th
Jay Carey 62nd
(Below: Jay Carey through the woods - photo by Martin)
Hannah Blundy 4th (with 2nd claim member Sophie Nicholls 3rd)
Mackenzie O’Dea 21st
Melissa McCusker 34th
(Below: Hannah Blundy - photo by Martin of Totallyfocused)
U17 men - 2nd Club team, winning the Silver medals in the SW region
Ollie Bishop 25th
Harrison Williams 27th
Jack Harvey 30th
Tommy Hummel 32nd
Oliver Castle 34th
(Below 1: Ollie Bishop - photo by Hannah)
(Below 2: Oliver Castle - photo by Martin of Totallyfocused)
(below 3: three of the four man u17 Harrier team with medals - photo by Hannah)
Senior Women – 6th
Lizzie Ingram (u20) 27th
Laura James 29th
Emily Murray (u20) 55th
Anya Evans (u20) 69th
Senior Men – 5th
Dan Maydew (u20) 24th
Sam Sommerville 28th
Christian Green 44th
Zak Hurrell 49th
Jon James 62nd
Alexander Coombs 65th
Robbie Hawkins 80th
William Armstrong (u20) 85th
Andrew Deamer 115th
Geoff Cole 156th
(Below: Sam Sommerville - photo by Martin)
That's some good running by all.
(More photos will be added if i get the time!)
Next up for the Secondary School students in Somerset will be the Somerset Schools XC Championships (& for those in Mendip area, the Mendip School event) whilst for all Club runners there's another lovely XC course and event coming up as part of the Gwent League at Blaise Castle, north Bristol on SATURDAY 19th February. (All paid up first claim members have their entry fee paid for them). Check with coaches/team managers on the entry procedures - link to this event from the usual place on the team website tab.
(& bring your number with you if you’ve run Street before in this Series)
Harrier members (or parents of junior members) - if you've not yet volunteered this membership year you have three more opportunties (Jan, Feb & March editions of the Street 5k races) to help marshal or behind the scenes at these races. The Club needs all its members to help out. Contact us via the email above to offer your services and arrive no later than 7pm on the evening to help out.
Training for juniors and seniors has now resumed at Millfield track and from the Wells Rugby Club. See website training tab for usual arrangements and make an enquiry if you are not currently a member but are interested in joining us in 2022 to improve or start running again.