Essex Cross Country League, Round 4, Great Notley, 14 January 2017

Club athletes defied bitterly cold conditions to continue their Essex League challenge as Braintree hosted the fourth round at Great Notley Country Park on Saturday.

Another victory for the Under 17 Girls / Under 20 women ensured that they have already guaranteed the league title with one round to spare as the final table is based on the best four results and they have an unbeatable lead with three wins and a second place. Jessica Mitchell's brilliant form continued as she earned her first league victory, with Kate O'Neil in runners up spot just 11 seconds back. Catherine Barker in 12th and Emily James' 21st place finish ensured another team victory.

The Under 13 Girls' second place finish was also good enough to seal the league title with one round still to come and the club had an impressive dozen finishers. Sydney Foley's third place led the squad home and Natalie Sewell marked her club debut with an excellent fourth place finish, while Annie Grannell (12th) and Hannah Yexley (18th) completed the scoring quartet. Alice Atkins, Ava Poulson, Holly Bradley & Maddie Barker occupied 20th to 23rd places and Jessie Collier (28th) , Rebecca O'Rourke (31st), Morgan Romain (34th) and Rose Mears (36th) completed the club finishers.

Alex Ford recorded his third individual victory to lead home the second placed Under 13 boys and to put himself in an unbeatable position for the individual league title. Matthew Blacklock (11th),  Lenny Houston (15th) and Oliver Yexley (18th) were the scorers as the team came within three points of league winners Southend and look to have confirmed runners up spot. Newcomer Shane Hart was a fine 20th on his debut, with Alex Kerr, Sam Bradley and another debutant Callum Basinger in close order from 23rd to 25th with Timi McDaniel in 30th.

The Senior Women recorded their best result of the season to win their Division 2 competition and to improve their chances of regaining their top flight place. Debbie Appleton was 11th in her first league appearance of the season with sister Jo Sullivan with her highest place this year in 25th. Joanne Reeves ran well for 36th on her club debut and Lesley Gahagan returned to club competition with a good 55th, with Tracy O'Neill 67th. 

Molly Sweetman had to settle for second on her return from injury but looks to have clinched the individual Under 15 Girls league title. Lily Bath was a strong seventh, sister Molly 16th and Kate Walker (23rd) the other scorers to bring the team home third. Chloe Morter (29th) and Lucy Priestley (31st) also competed.

The Under 15 Boys had an excellent roster of seven runners and finished third - their highest placing this season. Alex Friend in 11th was first home, with Dom Jarvis 20th, Louis Berrett not far back in 22nd and Ben Naish in 29th making up the scoring quartet. Luke Chester, Jake Long and Reece Debenham placed between 32nd & 40th.

There were just two Under 17 Boys due to injuries and other commitments. Lewis Debenham's seventh place was his bes tever and Oliver Bath's 11th his highest this season.

The Senior Men's team was decimated by ill health and other commitments which saw their championship potential fall apart. The only saving grace was again Rob Warner, who with one more race still to go has already won the senior men's individual Essex League title. His great second place was backed up with another very good run by under twenty James Stewart with his best performance of the season in 33rd. Next home was Matt Bland in 64th doing his first race of the season after a long lay off with injury. Under twenty Kieran O'Hara who continues to impress was 70th, just holding off Garry Atkins in 73rd. Another fine run by Steve Walker in 88th saw him complete the scoring team. Graham Hogan 101st and Tony Collins 124th made up the rest of the Havering contingent.

The last of the five league fixtures will be hosted by Basildon at Gloucester Park on 11th February when all the league trophies and individual medals will be awarded.  Before then club young athletes compete for borough teams at Colchester next weekend in the Essex Schools championships, while the weekend afterwards sees them contest the South of England Championships at Parliament Hill fields.





Link to Full Results League Tables Individual Tables

Under 13 Girls: 3rd Sydney Foley 10:44; 4th  - Natalie Sewell 10:57; 12th - Annie Grannell 11:42; 18th - Hannah Yexley 12:08;  (Team 2nd - 37 pts);  20th - Alice Atkins 12:14; 21st - Ava Poulson 12:15; 22nd – Holly Bradley 12:24; 23rd – Maddie Barker 12:25; 28th - Jessie Collier 12:56; 31st - Rebecca O'Rourke 13:06; 34th – Morgan Romain 13:12; 36th - Rose Mears 13:12

Team: 1. Basildon 33; 2. Havering 37; 3. Chelmsford 57

League: 1. Havering 6; 2=. Chelmsford & Basildon 16


Under 15 Girls: 2nd - Molly Sweetman 14:03; 7th - Lily Bath 15:14; 16th - Molly Bath 16:24; 23rd - Kate Walker 17:13 (Team 3rd - 48 pts) 29th - Chloe Morter 17:52; 31st Lucy Priestley 18:46

Team: 1. Basildon 31; 2. Chelmsford 41; 3. Havering - 48

League: 1. Basildon 6; 2. Chelmsford 8; 3. Havering 11


Under 17 Girls / Under 20 women:  1st - Jessica Mitchell 17:20; 2nd - Kate O’Neill 17:31; 12th – Catherine Barker 21:02; 21st - Emily James 24:25 (Team 1st - 36 pts)

Team: 1  Havering 36; 2. Southend 47; 3. Chelmsford 11 (2);

League: 1. Havering 5; 2. Chelmsford 11; 3. Benfleet 13


Senior Women: 11th  -Debbie Appleton (W40) 23:36; 25th - Jo Sullivan (W40) 25:47; 36th Joanne Reeves (W40) 26:56; 55th Lesley Gahagan (W55) 29:23; (Team 1st - 127 pts) 67th - Tracy O'Neill (W50) 30:16 

Team (Div 2): 1. Havering 127; 2. Halstead 139; 3. Mid Essex Casuals 172 [Vets: Team 4th – 72

League (Div 2): 1. Billericay & Halstead 8; 3. Havering -  10


Under 13 Boys:  1st - Alex Ford 10:06; 11th - Matthew Blacklock 10:44; 15th - Lenny Houston 10:53; 18th - Oliver Yexley 11:16 (Team 2nd - 45) 20th - Shane Hart 11:21; 23rd - Alex Kerr 11:33; 24th Sam Bradley 11:35; 25th Callum Basinger 11:40; 30th – Timi McDaniel 12:14

Team: 1. Southend 42; 2. Havering 45; 3. Basildon 64

League: 1. Southend 5; 2. Havering 9; 3. Basildon 17

Under 15 Boys: 11th  - Alex Friend 13:23; 20th - Dominic Jarvis 14:11; 22nd - Louis Berrett 14:26; 29th Ben Naish 15:07 (Team 3rd - 82 pts)  32nd - Luke Chester 15:14; 36th Jake Long 15:29; 39th Reece Debenham 16:35

Team: 1. Basildon 37; 2. Thurrock 52; 3. Havering 82

League: 1. Thurrock 6; 2. Basildon 14; 3. Chelmsford 16; 4. Havering 17

Under 17 Boys:  7th - Lewis Debenham 20:11; 11th Oliver Bath 20:53  

Team: 1. Southend 46; 2. Basildon 49 (3); 3. Colchester & T 9 (2); 4 Havering - 18 (2)

League: 1. Southend 5; 2. Basildon 18; 3. Orion 19 ...8. Havering 31

Senior Men: 2nd - Rob Warner (M35) 24:26; 33rd - James Stewart (U20) 27:23; 64th - Matt Bland 29:34; 70th – Kieran O’Hara (U20) 29:56 73rd - Gary Atkins (M45) 30:01; 88th - Steve Walker (M40) 31:13;  (Team 6th – 330 pts); 101st – Graham Hogan (M40) 32:31;  124th - Tony Collins 35:36

Team: Team: 1. Springfield 103; 2 Chelmsford 177; 3. Orion 188; ... 6. Havering 330

League: 1. Springfield 7; 2. Havering 13; 3. Chelmsford 15



Link to Full Results League Tables Individual Tables

Photos: Gary Howard, Jane Hallam & Mick Ford