Herne Hill Harriers athletes got off to a good start to the cross country season at the first fixture of the relatively low key East Surrey League. The races for young athletes and seniors were held in Lloyd Park, Croydon in late September Saturday afternoon sunshine.
The young age groups all raced together, boys and girls, with Jacob Harrison placing second among the under 15 boys and was second overall in the young athletes combined race, followed in by his brother Ben who was fourth of the under 15 boys and fifth overall.
Hebe Hunter was first the girl to finish, winning the under 15 girls category and placing twentieth of all the youngsters. Fabien Whitelock was an very impressive first under 13 boy across the line in his first ever cross country race, finishing fifteenth overall and backed up superbly by Oak Buchan who was fifth under 13 boy (23rd overall) and Sam Maloney seventh under 13 boy (27th overall).
Harriers were most impressive in the under 13 girls age group with Johanna Nicholson the first in her age group (29th overall), with Lily Rose Brown second (33rd overall) and Sophia Sahai third 35th overall) and Annabella Bailey fourth (36th overall). Herne Hill won the girls match thanks to these excellent performances, but lost out to Croydon in the boys team scores with a shortage of older boys on the day. Overall all the youngsters all packed very well which was pleasing to see.
In the senior race the Herne Hill women recorded another winning performance following the team gold medals in the Surrey Road Relays and eighth place in the Southern Road relays earlier in the month. This was another different team line up, a demonstration of the depth of the current female senior and under 20 squad at the club.
Lara Langston, Shannon Sinclair, Stacy Wheat and Evie McDermott placed second, third, fourth and eleventh among the women for a very good collective performance. The Herne Hill men’s scoring four man team of Fraser Hagell in 13th, Richard Keeble 16th, Gary Ironmonger 18th and first M55 and Oliver Morrison 20th and fourth M40 combined to place fourth men’s team in this opening race of the season.