The tail end of the cross country season is upon us meaning lots of big national finals and long car journeys for those competing! Always worth it to see our Beagles do us proud though.

National Cross Country

On Saturday runners from all over England descended on Bolesworth Castle in Chester for the pinnacle of the cross country season – the English National cross country championships. First held 147 years ago when there were just 32 runners and the race was declared void after the competitor’s  went off course! We’re pleased to say that this year’s event went much more smoothly and saw thousands of entries across the different age groups.

Beagles wise three of our athletes made the journey. Isabel Forrest went first in the U13 girls race and made a good start to position herself in the top quarter of the field. Battling well throughout the 3k course Isabel continued to make strong progress and a really flying final stretch saw her finish 21st out of the 253 runners and first from the local Essex area in 11:44. A brilliant result.

In the U15 girls 4.5k race, Olivia Forrest had a less than ideal start falling into about 36th position. However, true grit and an amazing burst of speed saw her push forwards and quickly gain ground on the leading pack. A few more overtakes and intelligent racing saw her position herself just behind the leading three runners, gaining throughout and pulling away with them from the main field. A super gutsy performance to finish fourth just four seconds off the medals in 16:37. Worth noting though that out of the field of 285 runners, Olivia was also the youngest of the top finishers with another year in this age group unlike those who took home the medals.

Finally, at 3pm, Elliot Worth joined the main race of the day – the senior men’s race which had over 2000 entrants and around 1500 finishers. Worth noting that this race makes no distinction between age groups and the field ranged all the way up to those in their 70s! (Specific age group results are yet to be published). Elliot showed great enthusiasm for the 12k two lap course and managed to keep smiling throughout the race as he battled hard with those around him. Brilliant tenacity and sensible pacing saw him finish in 51:47 – 961st place. Look carefully below and you’ll see more than 1000 Senior Men racing around part of the course all athletes tackled on Saturday!

London Mini Marathon Trials

On Sunday morning the annual trials were held to represent the London Borough of Havering in the London mini marathon in April. Only available to those from that area, those Beagles that were eligible turned up in force and did a brilliant job. Whilst the outcomes from the race – and offers of places – aren’t yet available – we are expecting a number of our Beagles to receive offers to join the team.

In the meantime – huge congratulations to Max Sanderson, Dean Savery, Olivia Forrest, Mattie Delea,  Evie Warn, Isabel Forrest, Ava Ewen, Ollie Johnson, Honey Peck, Carmen Ewen and Imogen Warn who gave it their all and ran with real strength and determination.

Parkrun / Junior parkrun round up

On Saturday several of our Beagles travelled to Valentines Parkrun on the hunt for PBs and it’s fair to say that mission went well! Led home by Max Sanderson who smashed his PB and went well under 18 minutes for the first time (17:46), Dean Savery followed close behind with his 5k PB (18:17) and Mattie Delea made it three from three with his PB (19:14). Amazing results demonstrating the real progress and outcomes of training. Over at Raphaels park Ben Corcoran was the first Beagle home (19:26) with George Ashton very close behind (19:44). Emily Brewington ran an amazing PB (22:21) underlining her current run of good form. At Shrewsbury parkrun, Elliot Worth “warmed up” for his later national XC run (22:18). Whilst at Brentwood parkrun Jasper Jaycock was first Beagle home (26:10) with Will Fagan just behind with a brilliant PB (26:21).

On Sunday at Harrow Lodge – Madison Kindler led the juniors back (8:04) followed by Emily Brewington who PB’d for the second day running (8:38). Oliver Trevor ran well to finish 5th (9:25) with Ezra Gooch 13th (11:34). At Lake Meadows Daniel Smith kept up his recent good running (9:05) as did Nora Heidemans who was so close to her PB! (10:02). Liam Worth (10:28) finished just ahead of Eleanora Barfoot (10:34). And Sadie Barfoot ran a brilliant PB (11:55).

Well done everyone!

AGM and Awards Evening

Can we take this opportunity to remind you that our inaugural AGM will be held on Sunday 11th March at 6:30pm in the Brentwood School Sports Centre. Everyone is very welcome to attend and ask any questions they wish of the club. This will be followed by our very first Beagles Awards Evening at 7:15pm and we really do hope you will join us to celebrate some of our brilliant Beagles. Contact us here if you wish to table any questions for discussion at the AGM.

Coming Up

Several of our Beagles are making the trip to Worksop on Saturday for the ISA national cross country and we have lots of Beagles competing all over the weekend at the Essex and Eastern indoor championships. We predict some brilliant racing, supportive teamwork and personal successes. Good luck to all!