South of the Thames Farthing Downs


After an early morning trip to Cheeky’s to pick up a pair of X-Talons for Jillian we had a surprisingly traffic free journey round the M25 to Coulsdon for the South of the Thames Cross Country Championships race.

Despite being the Saturday before Christmas a field of 284 runners turned up to race, including three Harriers who said they had been entered but weren’t on the list! After an extra 2 mile run down to race HQ from the top of the Downs and back again, and some serious grovelling, the race director agreed to add them to the programme, with Peter Nuttall having to undergo a sex change to accommodate Sarah Lavender.

Conditions were cool and breezy with sunny spells and no rain. This was a proper cross country course with none of that interminable running around school playing fields. The course consisted of 3 laps totalling about 8 miles over firm, undulating grassy downland with some muddy and stony wooded sections, exposed tree roots, one steep up hill drag, and a couple of minor road crossings.

Everyone ran together but the ladies were scored separately. Harrier results below (full results attached)

Overall Posn Position Time Name
1 1 00:42:45 Dean Lacey (Cambridge Harriers)
77 W1 00:50:59 Melanie Wilkins (Belgrave Harriers)
128 120 00:56:23 Terry Everest
162 147 00:58:49 Andy Joad
168 150 00:59:13 Nicholas reynolds
169 151 00:59:16 Neil Clark
190 166 01:00:25 Steve Austin
194 170 01:01:16 Mark Taylor
200 172 01:02:26 Simon Holford
211 W33 01:04:15 Jillian Holford
212 178 01:04:20 Michael Russell
226 W40 01:05:56 Sarah Lavender
233 190 01:06:35 George Harris

23 clubs qualified for the 6 to score team competition with Tonbridge AC coming first on 114 points and TWH 20th on 904 points. We didn’t have enough people for the 12 to score, nor for the ladies team competition.

Jillian was very pleased with her new X-Talons and said they ran very well (she didn’t do too badly her self either!). Many thanks also to Bob Lawrence and Tony Lavender for coming along to support.

Hope to see some of you at the next cross country event – the Kent County Champs on 3rd January at Hythe (conditions can’t possibly be worse than the 2014 running of this event …)

Have a great Christmas and New Year

Simon Holford
Acting XC Captain