By Henry Fagan
On Thursday 27 January, a team of twelve boys from Hampton took part in the annual Middlesex Cross Country Championships at Harrow School, representing the borough of Richmond, competing against eight other London boroughs. The Hampton boys fielded participants in each of the four age categories with some very impressive results.
In the First Year race, Ben Whitely ran a very strong race to finish in 16th in his debut Middlesex Championships. In the Second and Third Year race, Second Year Marcus Solomon qualified for the English Schools’ Cross Country Championships by winning his category with Ollie Swetman, Owen Parker and Ruben Bouwmeester-Reid finishing 11th, 13th and 34th respectively.
In the Fourth and Fifth Year race Freddie Bate also qualified for English Schools’ Championship by finishing 5th in his category with Theo Webb close behind in 12th.
In the senior Sixth Form event, Hampton only fielded lower sixth athletes for this category. Henry Fagan finished 9th – a possible qualification for English Schools – Charlie Coulter finished 12th, Daniel Clarke finished 15th, and Luke Trotman finished 29th.
All these very high finishing positions contributed greatly to Richmond’s overall score, leading to victory for Richmond!
The course was difficult, particularly for the senior boys who had to run the race after the course had been loosened by the younger years. Although, for a cross country race, the course was not particularly hilly, it was very technical with many tight turns, twisting paths and varying surfaces. However, none of this seemed to have fazed our athletes given their stellar results.
A thank you must go to Mr Clarke and Mr McTernan who managed to get all the boys to their race in time and ready to go whilst also being the team manager for the borough of Richmond, meaning that they had to look after all the other Richmond athletes as well. Good luck to Marcus and Freddie with the English Schools race in March (and hopefully one or two extras!).