It was a real test of character for the 11 Jersey Spartan Athletes who competed at Goodwood in the Hampshire Cross Country League. In atrocious wind and rain the course conditions were exceptionally muddy but compensated by a nice welcome at the Chichester A.C. event which had 400 athletes in attendance. Jersey Spartan runners performed exceptionally well within age groups as the League attracts the best runners from across the South of England.
The course varied for each race, spreading over the chalk hills and neighbouring woods, commonly known as Glorious Goodwood. The first event of the day was for 3k for the U13 athletes Florence Gothard and Adele Maher. 73 girls completed the 1.5 lap course with Florence finishing very strong in 6th place and a determined Adele, a year younger achieving a credible 39th place.
Storms clouds gathered overhead as 77 athletes lined up for the U13 boys race to also compete in a demanding 3k course. Isaac Du Val and Jack Kennedy, who is also a year young in this category finished in credible 12th and 18th place respectively showing how much these athletes are improving.
The next race took place when the rain was at its heaviest, drenching athletes on the start line. As spectators took cover, Yasmin Lookess raced 4k extremely competitively in U15 age group to finish a brilliant 13th out of 74 girls. In the fast paced U15 boys 4k race 3 athletes wrestled with conditions. Sam Maher pushed hard to finish in 4th place, followed by a very muddy Aaron Ottley 22nd and Barnaby Zaman 42nd. By this time the course was becoming increasingly slippery and technical.
Gemma Gothard and Jessica Troy, both in their first year at U17, faced a tough race with 32 women, and showed excellent form finishing 3rd and 16th respectively. Phil Maguire brought the Junior races to a close for the travelling team with a 5k 2 lap race in the U17 mens race. A speedy race from the start saw Phil finishing 27TH out of 56 competitors.
The Turmel twins experienced mixed fortunes in the Under 20 category having travelled down from St Marys University. Aaron improved to be 7th Under 20 (25th placed in seniors) whilst Chloe didn’t enjoy the muddy conditions and was 15th.
Several athletes were chosen to represent Hampshire in the SEAA Inter-Counties Championships on the 14th December in Bedfordshire. Jersey Spartan AC is supported by Santander Private Banking
Isaac Du Val