Steady start to the Cross Country season for Bexley AC at Swanley

Good performances from Chi Chi Rae Garland, Jack and Ted Higgins, Phoebe Cooper, Tom Wright and Paul Collier.

The rain just about held off, the course at Swanley Park was nicely designed and it was reasonably firm underfoot.

Girls and boys are all running the same distances now. First race was the U13 girls and we were able to score a team with Rosie Chandler in 37th place, Heather Beet in 52nd and Sophie Ansell 53rd they were 8th team. We only had one runner in the U13 boys race Mark Onanuga who is very young and was doing his first cross country, he ran a sensible race starting steady and pulled through to 54th.

We had 6 runners in the U15’s girls race, Chi Chi Rae Garland had a strong run finishing 8th, Jess Sargeant was next in 36th followed by Laurel Boughton in 45th, then her sister Maya 50th , Mollie Bishop in 52nd and Sophie Moore 58th. They were 7th team. Three runners from Bexley in the U15 boys race, Luke Harry continued his consistent form from the last cross country season finishing 38th, Jared Johnson was 53rd and Jude Lindstorm 65th they were 9th team.  

One runner in the U17 girls, Kacey– May Smith who came 25th.  As with the girls the U17 boys and U20 men ran in the same race.  We had one U17 boy Alfie Green running in his first cross country who was 41st. Unfortunately Jalen Pople is not ready to compete yet following an injury. Our best team performance was in the U20 men’s, Jack Higgins just edged out his brother Ted in the closing stages and they finished 2nd and 4th respectively, Ronnie Stowell was the last team scorer finishing 12th and they were 2nd team.

So to the seniors. We had a good team turn out of Bexley women. Phoebe Cooper running with the seniors for the first time finished 31st and was 6th under 20. Victoria Butterworth was 73rd, Suzannah Sheerin 76th, Hannah Araniello 101st, Paula Cooper 139, Lisa Smith 140, Sarah Dodds 156 and Geraldine Legon 158. They finished 11th in the ‘3 to score’ team and 10th in the ‘6 to score’ team.

In the senior men’s race we had a whopping 15 runners who all finished. Tom Wright pulled through well in the last two laps to finish 13th. Joe O’Hara suffering from a cold slipped back to 66th, Paul Collier had a great run he has just come back from injury and finished 77th, which was 4th over 50. Next was Damilore Adewale running his first cross country for Bexley in 100th place, Martin Smith was 102, Simon Wells also running in his first cross country for Bexley, 108, Jon Fish 113, Martin Jenner 200th, Mark Collier 228, Jon Hunter, good to see him running for Bexley again, 229, Stephen Lawrence 239, Tan Truong also new to cross country 265, Kevin Winch 267, Brian Crane 272 and Dave Winfield 274. There were almost 300 finishers in the men’s race.

We finished 8th team in the ‘4 to score’ team event and also 8th in the ‘12 to score’ team.

So numbers were good particularly in the senior teams hopefully we will get a similar turn out for the next race at Tonbridge on 26th October.

Two weeks after that we are hosting the 3rd fixture at Danson Park on 9th November, be great if we had quite a few to help with marshalling and setting up.

Richard Long