u15 and u17 boys take on Midland Road Relays

30 Sep

Emma Withers reports…

17 u15 boys and u17 men travelled to Sutton Park for the first race of the up and coming autumn season.  Armed with the club tent we arrived on site in good time, allowing those who hadn’t run at Sutton Park before to recce the course and acclimatise to the unusually warm conditions. 

Joseph Hull in his second year at u15 level, taking on the A leg, led the first team home in 14.29 (25), handing over to Eoin O Halloran, who ran with great determination, making up 14 places finishing in 14.21 (11).  Misha Evans held onto 11th position, 14.58 bringing the first team home in 43.48.  11th team overall. 

Second Team, with newcomer Nick Pestell, despite almost missing the team bus, was not late to the start and stuck closely to Joseph, crossing the finish in 14.52 (31), handing over to Amos Kingston who held onto 31st position, 16.43 and on the final leg, Fred Cummins, returning from injury, 16.12, making up 5 places (26).  26th team overall, 47.47.

Third Team, led out by Will Chapman, struggling with painful knees, 17.03 (43) handed over to the very experienced, Zac Roe 17.17 (36) making up 7 places. Jacob Franklin the final runner, 18.45 (33), making up another 3 places, kept up the pace. 33rd team overall, 53.05.

Fourth team, unfortunately having lost a team member to injury, set out with Ollie Robertson Kurd, in his first cross-country race, 16.28 (40), handed over to Joe McNamara 18.27 (37) showing such a huge improvement, knocking over 3 minutes off last years time.  Regular training is paying off!


The u17 men set off at 12.25 following a gentle warm up.  There had been much discussion in the first team and a plan devised to try to run under 40 minutes.  Led out by Fred Hawker, who as planned, stayed in the top ten, finishing in 12.32 (8), taking 42 seconds off last years time, handed over to Ollie Harper, running here for the first time made up 3 places, finishing in 12.59 (5). On the final leg Steve Kerfoot, 8 seconds quicker than last year, 14.14 finished in 9th place.  Finishing 9th team overall and delighted to be under 40 minutes in 39.45.

Otto Kingston, led the second team out, finishing in 15.13 almost a minute quicker than last year (35) handed over to James Casling, following a track season taking on 400m hurdles, 14.45 (28) making up 7 places and the ever consistent Jacob Roe, bringing the team home in 26th place overall, 15.58 (45.26). 


A special mention goes to Nathan Marchant (time tbc) who made his debut with the Senior Men’s team and also Henry (19.03) and Billy Cochrane (23.33), who have been assisting and pacing the u15 and u17 boys recently in training.


As always the boys displayed excellent team spirit and teamwork; a good day’s running.


Under 13 Boys kick off the winter season with gusto at Midland Road Relays

23 Sep

The day began very positively, everyone on time, standing room only on the minibus plus lots of enthusiastic new members to the team proudly wearing their Bristol & West vests.

After an uneventful journey we proceeded to park & although this was not straight forward it bore no resemblance to what was to follow four hours later.

Being first race off at 10.45am meant we were blessed with perfect racing conditions.

Once the lads had eventually climbed out of a wonderful tree which they always manage to find the serious task of racing took over & I was really impressed how well everyone managed the change overs. Clearly practice makes perfect.

Some of the under 13 lads relaxing in the sunshine!

The first fixture is always very difficult to decide the teams & running order & this year although not perfect it could have been a lot worse.

The A team consisted of Zac Cox (14.45) running a remarkable first leg finishing in 12th position & so I had to leg it to the start to alert Joey Taylor (16.20) he needed to make his way to the line. Despite an unfortunate fall half way round & a bloody knee Joey ran a very strong race & is well capable of running close to 16 min next time. The final stage was down to Vijay Sanjeer (16.23) who has recently shown great promise on the track. Running a very senseable  race he bought the team in for a very creditable 12th place overall. Considering the three members of this team have never competed at this event before I was delighted with this result.

The B team started with Daniel Jarrold (16.09) competing for the club for the first time plus young in the age group so he could not of wished for a better start. He ran with great maturity & was not phased by the fast pace in the early stages. An experienced Ronnie Wilmott (16.04) ran a very useful second leg picking up several places on his way as well as running 52 seconds quicker than last year. So the final leg was down to Max Finning (17.12) who is very new to the group & still learning how to train & race. He clearly was enjoying himself & there is much more to come form Max in future races. The B team finished a very respectable 20th

The C team was set on its way by Felix Pearson (17.48) who made the most of the competitive start & so running 41 seconds faster than last time which shows what a difference a year can make if you continue to train consistently. Likewise Ben Pocock (18.28) also beat his previous time & continues to improve as well as enjoying the occasion. Another new recruit to the u13 ranks is Barney Thomas (18.10) who showed real staying power right to the finishing line to bring our final complete team in 30th.

Apart from being the only club the to finish a C team we also started the only D team & this is thanks to Archie Green (19.21) who stuck solidly to his task on the first leg. This shows what remarkable team ethos the group has developed & everyone plays their part.

Overall the day went well from every perspective until we attempted to leave. As we approached the minibus it became very apparent we were well blocked in. However about half  an hour later & 101 three point turns James Green our in-house  driver finally made it out. The highlight of the day was probably the services on the way back but after such a fun day the chips were well deserved.

I am looking forward to our next away day again on Sunday 6th Oct, the National Road Relays.

National Road Relays, 6 Oct 2018: Senior Ladies’ report

20 Oct

Mel Newbery reports (rather self-effacingly) on the girls’ efforts a few weeks ago…well done all!

It was a successful day for the Bristol and West women’s teams at Sutton Park. Despite a rather poor start from Mel Newbery, who was a little under the weather, Kate Maltby was able to move the team up from 35th to 14th, which was a fantastic run! Natalie Griffiths took the third leg, and ran another 10 seconds faster than she had two weeks prior at the midland relays, moving the team up to 11th! She handed off to Elsey Davis, running her last race for the club as she has now relocated to Preston. Elsey went out in style, storming round the course in 14.30 to bring the team home in 7th place. After some appeals from teams who missed a changeover, Cardiff AC were reinstated to 7th place, bumping the women’s A team down to an official 8th place finish.

The women’s B team also had a very strong showing, finishing as the 4th ranked B team nationally, in 25th place! Ellen Harrison made a strong start for the B team, running 16.14 to equal her best time ever on the course and put the team in 39th place. It was fantastic to see Julia healthy and back competing after a long layoff due to injury, and she ran a strong leg, as did Rosie Hattersley in a cracking time of 16.20, after which the team had edged into 31st place. Izzy Talbot-Price brought the team home in a quick time of 16.40, picking off many competitors and helping them to their fabulous 25th place finish!

Midland Road Relays 22 September 2018: Junior boys’ reports

26 Sep

We had boys’ teams in the u13, u15 and u17 age groups at the road relays, and they all did a stirling job! We would like to point out to the senior teams that all of the boys brought their own set of 8 safety pins, rather than relying on their team manager 😉

under 13 boys – Ali Hurford reports

If there had been medals to the club for the most complete teams finishing this enthusiastic bunch would of had nothing to complain about. Despite the final results suggesting we had an incomplete E team I was witness to our very last runner crossing the finishing line. So all credit to the 15 lads and their parents whose professional approach from the moment we left Bristol made this all possible. Even all the well rehearsed change overs went to plan.  For the first time ever there was no obvious A or B team and despite my best intentions I did not call it quite right as this brief account describes.

Misha who has been rapidly improving in training had a cracking race on the first leg setting the B Team off to a great start  but only 6 sec behind, Ishmael never gave up for the A team.

Jay Hunt for the B team stuck to his task running a fine 2nd stage & actually ran the 3rd fastest time overall on that leg. Fred gave chase for the A team but despite his brave effort could not close the gap on the B team.

I always knew it would be close on the last leg between the teams & thanks to very competitive performances from both Tomek & Eoin the gap at the finish was just 11sec. Tomek who has not run the course before gave his all in the last 50m & was unlucky to be piped on the line into 6th place for the B Team – in the same recorded time as the 5th team, it would have been a photo finish on the track! Never giving up Eoin was closing in fast finishing in 7th position for the A team.

Naturally some of the boys are disappointed we did not bring home any medals but we were very competitive & it is the trying that matters. The national champs are in 2 weeks time & we can use this race to try & improve & hopefully put a few demons to bed.

The C,D & E Teams consisted of the younger & less experienced boys who all gave it their best shot & several performances have guaranteed a place in the national C team.

Overall the day was immensely satisfying as the positive attitude from the group is very contagious & bodes really well for the rest of the winter fixtures.

under 15 and under 17s – Emma Withers reports

The Bristol and West u15 and u17 boy’s endurance runners headed up to Birmingham’s Sutton Park on Saturday for the Midland Road Relays. 14 boys boarded the coach whilst Bristol was still sleeping.

Showing dedication for our first race of the season the u15 boys were first in the pens with Beck Harding Hill (13.34) getting close to his brother Stan’s’ times, Jay Akbar (14.22), getting steadily quicker and Will Chapman (17.17) our newest team member, battling first leg and all managing to remain on their feet.  Handing over on second leg to Joseph Hull (14.39) who ran with confidence keeping 9th place, Jacob Roe (15.52) almost 30 seconds quicker than last year and Amos Kingston (18.33) seeming to have lost his usual smile on the way round.  On final leg were Joe Mead (15.19) and Cole Edmonds (15.02), both focused and keeping any nerves under control.  The A team finishing 12th overall, B Team, 20th and our incomplete team due to injury, running for experience, in their first year in the u15 stream.

12.25 took our u17 runners into the pen.  Fred Hawker (13.14) taking exactly a minute off last years time and Lewis Adamson (15.03), coming back after some time out with injury, jostled for position on first leg, they were followed on 2nd leg, by Luke Iles (13.43), gliding around the course and Nathan Marchant (15.32) our most experienced team member.  Bringing the team home James Casling (14.39) holding 15th place and Otto Kingston (16.10), carrying a rugby injury, on the final leg.  The A team retained their 15th place, B team 27th overall.

First race under our belt, back in two weeks to do it all again at the National Road Relays…fingers crossed that everyone remains fit and well.