• Ben

Gwent League 3: Pembrey Park

The club had another successful day at the third Gwent Cross Country League match of the year, with a big turn out and a plethora of strong team and individual performances.


Individual Top 3 Finishes

First Place: Tony Orvain (Masters 35), Megan Hornung (U17 Women), Helene Represse (Masters 35), Claire Jolliffe (Masters 55)

Second Place: Ishmael Bradley (U17 Men), Felix McGrath (Senior Men), David Bedwell (Masters 65), Hannah Dyer (U23 Women), Chelsea Creak (Senior Women)

Third Place: Tony Orvain (Senior Men), Amy Nicholls (U17 Women), Sarah Everitt (Masters 45)


Team Top 3 Finishes

First Place: Senior Men, Senior Women, Female Masters 35

Second Place: Male Masters 35, Senior Women B, Female Masters 45

Third Place: U13 Boys, U13 Girls


Full results are available at: Results for Match 3 (gwent-league.org.uk)


Chris Elson has sent in his write-up of the Senior performances, with Simon Jones reporting on our girls performances. Our thanks to Chris, Simon and all the Team Managers for their ongoing efforts to organise, enter and manage our teams.


Girls

Our Under 11 girls were up first, just as the wind came in! Silvi Ritter-Sherratt had clearly recovered from her bad knee with her second 10th place of the season, ensuring 10th overall in the individual competition. Cora Lambourne continued her excellent season in the lower age group, coming home in 24th. Isla Brown returned to the team with a strong 29th. Loretta Chowdhury-Barratt (37th) and Poppy Dixon (38th) had a brilliant race to the finish to complete the group, contributing to the under 11 A team moving up to 4th place in the league overall.


The Under 13 A team had a superb day, with our top 4 girls finishing within 3 seconds of each other! Gabriela Ritter-Sherratt brought us home with her highest finish of 13th. Holly Massey-Jones once again finished strong to chase her all the way up the back straight (14th) with Caitlin White making a superb cross-country debut in 16th. Amira ('I love the hills') Chowdhury-Barratt had a simply superb run finishing in 17th, an impressive 21 places higher than her previous run. Finishing with 60 points as a team, they are now in a very strong podium position behind Swansea and Cardiff, with Gabi and Holly pushing for top 10 individual finishes.


The Under 13 B team on the day also did well, once again demonstrating our strength in depth. Our 3 runners came in together led by Phoebe Sanigar in 43rd, another great run. Both Anisa Lawson (44th) and Imogen Sparrow (45th) improved on their previous best finishes to ensure that our B team remain the highest placed B team (out of 11). It was an incredibly challenging course and unfortunately Millie and Mairi picked up injuries. Both girls have trained and performed brilliantly all season contributing to the A team points, and we know they both have the right talent and attitude to bounce back quickly.


The strong performances continued in the Under 15 race. Holly Sanigar had finished 7th in the two previous races and was determined to break that trend. She did so with a fantastic finish, pipping her Cardiff Opponent to the line for 6th place. Zahra Fitzpatrick (21st) and Amelie Swaffer (24th) both improved on their previous finishes, racing together through the field. Mia Buscemi finished in 41st after a well-paced run, ensuring that the team finished in 4th on the day. A podium finish looks a little too far away, but who knows?


Megan Hornung continued her outstanding form with another victory in the Under 17 race, firmly securing her place at the top of the individual competition. Amy Nicholls ran her first Gwent League race of the season in style finishing in 3rd, with Molly Thomas completing the team in a very solid 11th. Molly is just 2 match points away from a top 10 finish with 2 to go. These performances saw the team win the event comfortably on the day, and with 2 races to go, a podium finish is certainly possible.


A brilliant day from all, and we are looking forward to the next one at Blaise!


Women

The wind was blustery as those who ran into the teeth of it will attest, but the sun shone through despite the ominous clouds hovering nearby. As can be seen from the results the Bristol Nippy Ladies were out in force with five in the first 13 and ten in the first 29! For the third time Chelsea Creak led the A team home. Overheard was someone commenting “Bristol & West have a treasure there”. Both Kat Entwhistle and Catie O’Donoghue had their best Gwent League results in 5th and 7th place followed by Helene Represse in 8th and 1st V35. Helene had given a glimpse of her class in the BMF cross-country relays, and it was a boost for the team that she reproduced her form in the Gwent League. The A team was completed by Naomi Aylwin, the B&W revelation of this race in 13th, a huge step forward for Naomi. Hannah Dyer continued her run of good form leading the B team home in 16th place closely followed by rapidly improving Elina Jarbin in 19th (8th V35). The B team was completed by veteran Sarah Everitt having another excellent run in 22nd (3rd V50), Liz Sanigar in 28th (6th V40) and Verity Potts in 29th another edging her way up the field as the events progress. Clare Jolliffe had another astonishing run in 37th place, winning the V55 race by the huge margin of a minute and 27 secs. Elaina Gard, not her usual self was 38th and Hannah Plunkett-Cole making her club debut with a meritorious run (there’s more to come there) 39th. That left Ellen Harrison a welcome sight back running for the club after a prolonged foot injury in 67th to complete the C team with another newcomer Helen Mallison-King in 87th, another to exceed expectations. The club strength in depth was shown by the triumphant D team composed of Hayley Bennett who is recovering from eating for two, Kate Hoffen (11th V50) who is getting better with each race, the consistent Antonia Gooder, Olivia Zeltner who is currently eating for two, and Emma-Jane Orchard enjoying her second Gwent League outing.


Men

For the men, Felix McGrath edged his way through the front of the field and looked remarkably composed for the rest of the race drawing away to finishing second. Next up, making a very impressive club debut came Tony Orvain, only 16 seconds adrift of Felix. Not surprisingly Tony was first V35. The A team was completed by two solid runs from Adam Stokes 23rd and 5th V35, Pete Bains 35th and 10th V35 and another club newcomer and good find, Graham Donald in 56th place. Andrew Grigg making his first club appearance in the Gwent League, the improving Matt Brydon and Chris Neilson packed in together led the C team home. Chris suffered from untying shoelace syndrome leading to a discussion on how best to secure said shoelaces. It shouldn’t happen again! Tariq Kurd “really enjoyed the race” and came 137th and Jon Bennett despite child minding for the women’s race 142nd completed the team. That left the veterans, Andy Dunn, Richard Brent (9th V55), Nicko Brooke and Bill Hull to keep the D team in the hunt.


Bristol & West A 2nd on the day but extended their overall lead over Cardiff AAC by 193 points. The B team were 2nd on the day but extended their overall lead of the B division to over 700 points. The V35 team was second, with the C team 6th in the Reserve division on the day, but retain the overall divisional lead by 96 points


Polish your spikes for the next in the series at Blaise Estate on Saturday 19th February and remember to enter the SW championships on Sunday 2nd January




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