Herne Hill Harriers athletes of all ages enjoyed further success over a busy weekend which saw a number of the young athletes representing their London Borough teams at Saturday’s London Youth Games at the usual Parliament Hill venue made even more testing this year by the recent wet weather. A day later several made the yearly pilgrimage over to the Camberley Cross Country Open races and returned home laden with medals.
The senior athletes raced for their club teams over the same course in the London Cross Country Championship on Saturday and were then in action again on a chilly Sunday morning as they were either competing or helping to organise the Herne Hill Harriers annual Emer Casey Memorial London 10km in Brockwell Park in support of the charity for research into ovarian cancer.
At Parliament Hill both Sophia Sahai and Phoebe Bowen brought home individual medals in the under 13 and under U15 Girls races respectively as both had very fine runs on a tough day.
The Harriers senior team turnout in the senior races featured 13 women in the first of the two adult events as they ran 6km and then 19 men finished the very challenging 10km race at the end of the day’s programme when the course had been cut up by all the earlier contests.
Both senior teams again demonstrated excellent team packing in their races as the women’s team placed fifth of 31 complete A teams and the men were seventh of 38 full A teams, these fine results being achieved despite the highest placed Herne Hill individuals being cross country team captains Julia Wedmore in 18th and Angus Butler in 28th.
Harriers’ A team scorers were Wedmore 18th, Fiona de Mauny 21st, Shannon Sinclair 44th and Katie Balme 45th (also 3rd placed Under 20 woman) for the women and Butler 28th, Jack Dickenson 30th, Lewis Laylee 35th and Mohammed Ismail 50th for the men. There were a very good number of strong runs behind the A team scorers in both races as the squad depth is now on display almost every weekend in the winter racing calendar.
Sunday’s Emer Casey Foundation London 10km race in Brockwell Park was as ever very well–orchestrated and organised and was another successful day for all involved in the success of the event, now in its eleventh year. Race Director James Ward again reaped the reward for the hard work that went into a morning which contributes towards a very worthy charitable cause.
The visiting team from Youghal AC from Emer’s family home town in Ireland enjoyed a good share of the spoils in particular in the women’s prize list while the host club Herne Hill dominated the leading male positions as Lewis Laylee was second after also racing the day before,
Andrew Warburton third, Josh Pewter fourth, Andrew Perfect fifth, Jonathan Ratcliffe eighth and first over 50, while Gary Ironmonger was just behind Ratcliffe in ninth place as the second M50 finisher as these men all led a formidable red and black charge at the front of the field.
In Camberley the Open races began with a silver medal for Jack McLennan in the under 11 Boys Race. Then the under 13 Girls Rosalie Laban, Eva O’ Hanlon and Vivi Marshall had a clean sweep of first, second and third and claimed won team gold medals.
Harriers’ under 13 Boys, Keeran Sriskandarajah, Oak Buchan and Fabien Whitelock repeated the feat in the first three positions in their age category as well as team gold medals, while Phoebe Bowen won the under 15 Girls race to bring home yet more gold the day after her medal performance at Parliament Hill.
The under 15 Boys’ race saw further success as Harvey Kande was first, David Aisa Miller fourth and Diego Lister fifth which also gave them a team victory. The final race the senior men’s 10km race was won by Ant Buchan, the father of Herne Hill young athletes Oak and Heath to round off a fine day’s work for the club both in London and in Camberley.