The 2014/2015 cross country season kicked off with fine weather greeting runners at the scenic Cotswold Farm Park.
Kenilworth’s senior men’s team were led by Richard Simkiss who had a strong race to finish fourth in 30min 43sec.
He was followed by Stephen Page (15th in 32:16), with Paul Andrew 15 seconds further back.
Phil Gould, returning following an injury, was pleased to make it round with minimal pain in 33:51.
The senior men’s team was completed by Marc Curtis and cross-country enthusiast Graham Birch who were 57th and 66th, respectively, in 35:44 and 36:00.
This put Kenilworth in fifth behind Cheltenham and County Harriers.
The masters team ran well to come in fourth.
With four runners to count, Curtis and Birch were joined by Roger Homes (82nd in 36:41) and Simon Corley (107th in 37:33).
Craig Bower was the first Leamington C&AC athlete home in 59th place in 35:47 followed by Steve Howes (70th – 36.09) and Nick Tawney (117th – 38.12) who was also third in the V55 category. The scoring team was completed by Paul Caruana (138th – 39.20), Graham Garlick (180th – 41.09) and Duncan Loveday (221st – 44.34).
The race was won by Graham Rush of Cheltenham in 29:04.
Kenilworth’s senior ladies were sixth with Laura Pettifer 20th in 27:20, closely followed by Louise Andrews (23rd in 27:55) and Stef Lunn (26th in 28.04).
Making their cross-country debuts were Rachel Miller and Lucy Boucher-Heather who, along with Laura Gould, completed the scoring six.
Pauline Dable, in 37:44, was first V65.
Jenny Jeeves was the only C&AC participant in the senior ladies’ race finishing 39th and third V45 in 28:45.
Jenny Nesbitt of Worcester won the race in 22:59.
Kieran Chahal led Leamington C&AC’s under-15 boys to an age group victory, finishing fourth in 17:55, just ahead of clubmates Alex Ibbs (18:05) and Greg West (18.25).
The team was completed by Toby Loveday (14th in 19:41) and Ben Illsley (25th in 22.27).
Other results: Under-13 boys’: 10, Will Eadon (10:27); 36, Harry Miller (12:58). Under-11 girls’: 17, Melanie Gould (6:18).
The following day, Kenilworth Runners’ Simkiss made the short journey to Daventry to complete its ten-mile race at a marathon training pace of 5:37/mile.
Content to sit behind the race leader for the first half of the race, Simkiss took the lead around half-way, running a strong and controlled race to win in a comfortable 55:25.
Louise Andrews, meanwhile, was also quickly back in action, taking first place in the ladies’ race at the the Stroke Association Ragley Hall 10k, crossing the line in 44:45.
Kenilworth Runners’ Richard Whiting finished 44th in 56:28 at the Worcestershire Beacon race in Great Malvern.
The overall winner was unattached runner Andy Salt in 46:18, with Caroline Harlan-Marks of Bournville Harriers the first female finisher in 56:01.
Studland Stampede, Dorset, Sunday 12 October 2014
Kenilworth Runners’ Sheela Kennedy & Richard Broadbent made their way down to the Dorset coast for one of the highlights of the off-road racing calendar.
This year the route had been slightly altered due to sand erosion, tide times & excessive seaweed – essentially the race starting at the National Trust shop on Studland beach, heading off towards the Old Harry Rocks. It then leaves the beach & heads along the shore, through a wooded gulley, across the road & up onto the heathland immediately due south of Poole Harbour, where there are spectacular views. The route then goes out & around the Agglestone Rock, back across the heath, back over the road, through the dunes to the headland & back to the finish at Studland beach. Underfoot varies between hard gritty trails and energy sapping soft sand, with a couple of small road crossings & some peaty bog up on the heath. It’s tough but attracts a sell-out 500 runners of all abilities.
Blackpool Autumn Breaker 10km, Sunday 12th October
Oxford Half Marathon, Sunday 12th October
Royal Parks Ultra, Sunday 12th October