The New Year kicked off with a new XC venue hosted by Ipswich, which featured 29 Bentley vests of which 15 of you had now competed in all 4 for the season, we finished in 5th and with the ladies 4th we maintained 4th overall.
While our young star Harrison Leek continued to shine in the juniors race with his highest placed finish of the campaign in 49th.
The first road race which attracted a number of you was at Folksworth a hilly 15 miler, Clive Thomas ran a superb race taking 1st for 50+, 18th overall, a Gold standard to complete a full set, and 5th place on the clubs top 10 performance list, with a time of 1:36:18 that’s an impressive average of 6:26 per mile, well done to Kevin Stevens continuing on from his improving XC form with a Club Bronze standard in 1:44:42, Andrew Robertson 1:47:43 just missing a club standard and Jamie Neil 1:57:47 completed our quartet at Folksworth.
On the same day over at the Benfleet 15, Charlie Keitch 1:48:44, Ben Ficken 1:53:07, Tom Fowler 2:02:10 and John Booty 2:08:50 took part in this demanding hilly trail race. Not the sort of race you would hope to achieve any standard in but Charlie went very close.
To finish the month off 6 of us headed south for the Southern XC championship, at Parliament Hill, a tough 3 lap hilly 9 mile course with mud, mud and more mud, Amazingly I didn’t see one person fall over! Myself 1:07:26, Ben Ficken 1:09:12, Michael Simmons 1:10:08, Charlie Keitch 1:11:03, Mark Ross 1:22:16 and Paul Carlisle 1:22:32. As a team we finished in 94th place.
Tough choice for January runner of the month, but my vote goes to Charlie Keitch, he had a great XC at Ipswich, came so close to a standard at Benfleet, and then took on Parliament Hill with another solid run in more mud. Well done Charlie keep up the good work and those standards will come.
A lot to look forward to in February, 2 more XC races, and our very own half, on the 9th, please do double check the marshal list that Paul has recently sent out, and if you haven’t got a role, and you can help let Paul, Clive or Russ know asap.
I hope to see as many of you as possible supporting your club and enjoying your running in February.