Fri, 05 Apr 2019
THE West Berkshire & North Hampshire Primary Schools Cross Country Championships yet again broke its own record with 1,352 youngsters from 48 schools finishing at Newbury Showground.
The event, now in its 21st year, is the second-largest in the UK, behind the Primary Nationals in Leicestershire.
The Year 3/4 girls were the first runners of the day and it was Serena Deol from The Abbey School who crossed the line first, with Amber Stiles from Brightwalton taking second and Anna Hall from Falkland third.
A total of 317 girls finished the race, which saw The Abbey win the team prize, with Spurcroft runners-up and Robert Sandilands third.
The Year 3/4 boys produced the biggest field of the day, with 360 finishers.
And there was a one-two for Hungerford Primary School as they packed well over the 1.1-mile course.
Arthur Thatcher came in first with Sid Waldon taking second and Stockcross’ Tom Austin in third.
The team award went to Hungerford with a very low eight points, while Falkland finished runners up and Bradfield were third.
The Year 5/6 girls fielded 330 runners and it was Helena Van Blerk from Falkland who crossed the line first.
Claire McGonnell from St Gabriel’s took second spot ahead of Zoe Allen from Chieveley.
The Abbey took their second team trophy, with Falkland runners-up and Speenhamland third.
The Year 5/6 boys had 350 finishers and it was Ivan Chekmazov from Thatcham Park who took the win.
Eddie Rushmere-Wilson finished second, ahead of Calcot School’s Louie Bellanti.
In the team standings, Falkland took first place with St Nicolas runners-up ahead of Francis Baily, who finished third.
The overall trophy for all races combined went to Falkland Primary School, with St Nicolas finishing runners-up, Hungerford third, Spurcroft fourth and Francis Baily fifth.
The top Hampshire school was Woolton Hill, with Kingsclere in second place, while in the Small Schools, Streatley were the winners, ahead of Chieveley and Welford & Wickham in second and third respectively.
The first B Team Trophy went to St Nicolas School.
Event organiser Nick Bull was delighted to see a huge number of children take part.
After the event, he said: “It was great to see.
“We had 48 schools and hopefully, as we’re bringing the event earlier next year, we’ll target between 1,400 and 1,500 children.”
A new promotion and relegation format has been introduced which features three divisions and it now means teams can move higher up the rankings if they perform well.
The Kennet Cup (Division 3) went to Pangbourne, The Porterfield Cup (Division 2) went to Inkpen and The Division 1 Hockaday Cup was won by Falkland.
And on that decision, Mr Bull said: “It’s great for the smaller schools as it encourages them to have fun and still achieve something in the league standings.”