Ley Hill and Little Kingshill hosted the last in a series of local cross country events at Lowndes Park in Chesham. Conditions for running were ideal: dry and warm with a cooling breeze. This year’s course had been extended to make it even more challenging for the runners. The junior course (Years 3 and 4) was set at 1500m and 1800m for the seniors (5 and 6). All the children had to cope with two steep climbs, one at the start of the race and a second steep slope to the finishing line. Several children were running for the school for the first time and did extremely well to get round the course.
With 70-80 runners in each race, medals were awarded to the top ten finishers and team positions are calculated by adding the scores of the top three runners from each school. Medals were awarded to the first four schools. Fifty-seven Gateway children were available on the day.
William St C-B continues to impress, finishing in 6th place for the 2nd time. He was followed in by George C (17th) and Henry G (20th). These boys, once again, secured the 3rd placed team medals. Year 3 girls also ran very well with Penny Dl just outside the medal positions in 11th, Millie G was 22nd (her best run to date) and Amber O was 24th.
In the Year 4 boys’ race, Oakley D was leading with 120m to go but under real pressure from another runner as they tussled for the lead. Oakley, unfortunately, tripped in the sprint finish and had to settle for second place on this occasion. Oliver L deserved his 10th place medal for a gritty performance and Harry N was 22nd, helping the team to 3rd place. In the girls’ race, Lucy A scored her best finish by coming 8th, followed closely by Jemma T in 10th, Abigail H also finished strongly in 12th. These girls secured 3rd place team medals.
Some of the year 5 runners deserve special praise for their performance having played in an exhausting 6-a-side football competition the day before (5 matches) they had to summon up the strength to take on this run. Cormac N powered his way round coming 4th, Alex P was 10th and Brandon N-T finished 25th( if only he could remember his boots!) The boys were also rewarded with 3rd place team medals. Esme Y paced herself superbly to finish 8th in the girls’ race. Daisy S was 17th and Eva B 18th. The girls finished with 4th place medals.
In Year 6, Zach R usually likes to lead the charge of runners in local events so it was surprising to see him round the 1st bend in 40th position. He finished in 5th place having made up a great deal of ground on the front runners but was never really in contention to threaten for a top three finish. James P continues to improve and he finished in 18th position with Harry O’ C-P coming 30th. These runners also received Team Bronze medals. Syke M is beginning to recapture some of her old zest and form by getting some regular running under her belt. She almost ran out of steam on the final hill but managed to finish 5th; a great result. Sophie A was 20th and Helen N 26th . These girls also deserve praise for their support, having played in the gruelling Regional Netball Finals the day before.
It was a great morning’s racing and Gateway’s staff echo the praise heaped on the children by local schools’ cross-country Chairman, Steve Butler, who commended all of them on their effort and achievements, this year, regardless of position. HJ