South of England Cross Country Championships, Parliament Hill 26 January 2019

The South of England Championships returned to the testing Parliament Hill course at Hampstead Heath on Saturday after visiting Brighton last year and once again good fields and strong competition were the order of the day.

Lauren Deadman confirmed a return to form after her maternity break with a fine fifth place, clocking 26m 30 secs in the senior women's 8km race in her first Southern Championships for six years. Morgan Campbell was 118th on her first Southern, with Robyn Matson 195th and Clare Davies 270th completing the 25th placed team and Clare Rudgley in 629th position, as an unwell Vicky Smith failed to finish.

Jessica Mitchell was an excellent sixth in the Under 20 women's race over 6km with her 24m 26 secs clocking and Kate O'Neill was 15 seconds back in ninth, with Sophie Rand 32nd. The Under 20 Men were able to field only one of their county winning quartet team as the others sat it out a week ahead of the schools' inter counties race. Despite recent training interruptions Ben Davis had a strong run to place 20th in his final Southern champs as an Under 20, while county medallist James Stewart ran well to take 65th place.

The county championship winning Senior Men's team were only able to roster two of the county scorers due to illness and other commitments. Rob Warner had his best result on the gruelling 15km (nine mile) course and his 69th place meant he was the second Essex athlete home. The other county team athlete was Jamie Buckley-Stanton who had a good run in his first nine miler over this course to finish in 160th with John Whitehead 341st and Rob Trevor 452nd both making the top five hundred, with Jason Crispin 778th, Steve Walker 825th and Roy James 979th completing the Havering contingent.

Natalie Sewell was a respectable 19th in the Under 15 Girls event ahead of 26th placed training partner Sydney Foley, with Jessica Wright (144th) and Rebecca O'Rourke in 278th completing the 21st placed team. County champion Alex Ford had to settle for 55th in the Under 15 Boys race with county medallist Charlie Howell in 145th as Nathan Hart (178th) and Lewis Edwards ensured a scoring quartet which also placed 21st.

Stephanie Okoro started brightly in the Under 13 Girls championship but dropped back to place 63rd one place ahead of Tilly Canty, with Freya Long (93rd) and Charlotte Kennedy (303rd) completed the team for yet another 21st place finish while Ruby Higgins pulled out close to the finish. The Under 13 Boys were 22nd as Ryan Carroll (70th), Charlie Burgess (123rd), Nathan Hart (178th) and 214th placed Finley Wolton were the scorers with Alex Cordery-Smith and Max Robbins gaining useful experience at this level. Completing the club line up were the short handed Under 17 Men with Harry Jones (54th) and George Barnacle (72nd) flying the flag.




Under 13 Girls: 63rd - Stephanie Okoro 13:30; 64th - Tilly Canty 13:34; 93rd Freya Long 13:54; 303rd Charlotte Kennedy 17:26  (Team: 21st)


Under 15 Girls:  19th Natalie Sewell 17:07; 26th Sydney Foley 17:20; 144th Jessica Wright 19:22; 278th - Rebecca O'Rourke 22:42 (Team 21st)


Under 20 Women:  6th - Jessica Mitchell 24:26; 9th - Kate O'Neill 24:41; 32nd - Sophie Rand 27:40


Senior Women:  5th - Lauren Deadman 28:30; 118th Morgan Campbell 33:29; 195th Robyn Matson 35:21; 270th - Clare Davies 36:57 (Team 25th); 629th Clare Rudgley 47:10


Under 13 Boys: 70th Ryan Carroll 12:32; 123rd Charlie Burgess 12:55; 178th Nathan Hart 13:21; 214th Finley Wolton 13:37; (Team: 22nd) 223rd Alex Cordery-Smith 13:44; 228th Max Robbins 13:47 


Under 15 Boys:  55th - Alex Ford 16:36; 145th Charlie Howell 17:43; 170th Shane Hart 18:05; 237th - Lewis Edwards 19:20 (Team: 21st)


Under 17 Men:  54th - Harry Jones 23:27; 72nd George Barnacle 23:54


Under 20 Men:  20th - Ben Davis 26:55; 65th James Stewart 28:34


Senior Men:  69th Rob Warner 50:21;160th - Jamie Buckley-Stanton 53:14; 314th - John Whitehead 56:37 ; 452nd - Rob Trevor 59:07; 701st - Gary Atkins 63:37; 778th - Jason Crispin 64:53; (Team 41st) 825th - Steve Walker 65:58; 979th - Roy James 70:18



Photos: Mick Ford & Erica O'Rourke

Photos: Kevin White