Kent Fitness League XC Update after 2 races

Knole Park Sevenoaks & Swanley Park Swanley report

Sunday 3rd November saw the start of this season’s Kent Fitness XC League (KFL) in the amazing setting of Knole Park Sevenoaks. Under unusually beautiful blue skies the race was held over a new extended course with the start being delayed due to parking problems and the longer walk to the start line.

34 Paddock Wood AC (PWAC) athletes stood on the start line a fantastic turn out. A few new faces, 5 debutant’s to the KFL along with many familiar ones, we couldn’t ask for any more. It was also good to see the Club Chairman Richard Harris there supporting the team, much appreciated by one and all.

Unfortunately after just a few tough miles Ben Hepden one of our debutant runners felt his hamstring pulling, a reminder of his recent great effort at the Berlin Marathon, Ben tried after a short rest to carry on but unfortunately it was not to be and he had to admit defeat on the day. Leading home PWAC was the ever improving young Harry Young finishing in 7th place which was upgraded to 6th as the lead runner was deemed to be a guest runner. 2nd home for the club was Adam Tibbals in 21st place 3 other PWAC men made the top 30, James Ridger 24th Charles George 25th and Lukas Bates 28th.  Michael Gibbs, Ian Sutherland, Daniel Grimwood, Nick Denbow and David Sampson made up the rest of the teams scoring male runners. The clubs debutant male runners Jamie Forman, Stephen Large and Mark Rich all appeared to enjoy the race as well as being part of the team, even if it was a little tough.

Leading the women home for PWAC was Laura Douse who finished 4th lady followed by someone who is definitely getting back to her best, Mandy Barker 12th lady home. Kate Cole 27th and Lyndsey Ritchie 36th made up the scoring ladies team. Ophelia Thenault and Kelly Large, both league debutants found the race tough but most enjoyable.

This league is a true team event and our good turnout showed in the overall results.

Both the men’s and ladies teams finished 3rd, which pushed the combined team into an excellent 2nd place just 9 points behind the winning and host team Sevenoaks AC.

 

Sunday 10th November (Remembrance Sunday) saw another beautiful day and another amazing turnout (34 runners again) for the second match of the season in Swanley Park Swanley.

This race saw a junior race prior to the main race (no junior league this season) with Evan Wild and Louis Cole running in the U/17 race. Evan won the 3 mile race with Louis finishing 3rd, very well done guys. Another 34 on the start line including 2 more debutants to the league along with the Chairman once again supporting.  The race started after the customary 2 minutes silence and was run over 1 short and 2 long laps of the park.

First home again was Harry Young who found the course much more to his liking as he finished in 4th place. Nathan Chapman was next home in 12th place with Adam Tibbals 21st James Ridger 27th. Wayne Balmer, Michael Gibbs, Ian Sutherland, Daniel Grimwood, Nick Denbow (who had a storming run) and David Sampson made up the rest of the scoring male team. I am pleased to say after some attention and rest during the week Ben Hepden finished the race OK along with our other debutant Jordan Northfield. A mention must be made to Stephen Large who had a great run at the Bexhill Poppy 10k the day before.

In the women’s race Laura Douse was once again first home for the team this time followed by last season’s league female winner Becky Morrish 13th, Mandy Barker 19th and Kate Cole 45th.

Special mention has to be made to Mandy, Natasha Wild and Julie Harker who had all run the Kent XC League the afternoon before for PWAC. Mandy also ran the Tonbridge Park Run in the morning. Kelly Large who had run the Bexhill Poppy 10k the day before as well as Kate Cole and Lyndsey Ritchie who had both run an extremely tough 6k commando race the day before.

Once again the great performances along with the great turn out meant another set of fantastic results. The men finished in 3rd place the ladies 4th but in the combined team event PWAC finished amazingly 2nd again to Medway and Maidstone AC.

After the first to matches its gives us great pleasure to announce TEAM PWAC are 3rd men’s team and 2nd female team overall with the combined team top of the pile in 1st place on count back from Sevenoaks AC. As team managers we could not ask for more, thank you one and all.

A full set of the results and league tables along with all the race details can be found on the KFL website https://kfl.canterburyharriers.org/xc.

Next race is at Oxleas Wood, Eltham, 1st December were the new club tents will make its league debut. Keep up the training and here’s to keeping this fantastic success going, see you there.

Richard & Jeanette Elliott

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