Chichester athletes do battle with the best in Edinburgh and Essex

With the imposing backdrop of Arthur’s Seat, students from across Great Britain descended on Hollyrood Park, Edinburgh, for the British Universities cross country championships.

Monday, 10th February 2020, 8:00 am
Liam Dunne (No108) in action for Sussex at Chelmsford
Liam Dunne (No108) in action for Sussex at Chelmsford

Among the thousands taking part were three of Chichester’s under-20s, all competing in this event for the first time.

The highest position from a Chi athlete came from Will Broom with a fine 17th place out of 635 finishers in the men’s 8k short course race.

Making the most of several weeks uninterrupted training, Broom has built on his run in the Sussex championships to gain a coveted top-20 spot running for Loughborough University.

Also back to form after an autumn of illness and injury was Alice Cox-Rusbridge, running in the blue vest of the University of Surrey to finish 55th out of nearly 500 finishers in the women’s short course over 6k.

Opting for the longer distance was Leo Stallard, another who is gradually finding his form of last season with 212th place in a very high quality 10k men’s race over three gruelling laps of the undulating and muddy course, well known in athletics for staging many international competitions over recent years.

All three athletes are in their first year of their studies so will have a least two more years in this event.

South East schools inter-counties at Chelmsford

Four of Chichester’s junior squad made the journey to Chelmsford, Essex, for the south-east schools inter-county cross country championships.

Following the Sussex event in gale-force winds a couple of weeks ago, conditions were thankfully not quite as bad although a strong breeze was a factor in exposed parts of the course.

In a change from his recent indoor races, Liam Dunne donned the Sussex schools vest for the first time, running for Chichester College and did well to finish in 18th place.

Crucially he was sixth scorer for the silver medal-winning Sussex senior boys’ team, only beaten by Hampshire on the day with national powerhouses Essex and Surrey in their wake.

Harry Sage was 11th Sussex man home in the same race in 78th place a day before he broke 40 minutes in a 10k for the first time in the Chichester Priory race.

Maggie King also made her mark in the senior are group for the first time with 31st place in the girls’ race which made the Bishop Luffa pupil third Sussex scorer.

In action for St Philip Howard was Cerys Dickinson, who ran well to finish 66th in a very competitive intermediate girls’ race.

The event marks the second stage of the schools programme, culminating in the all England championships in March.

Corporate Challenge

The first race night of the 2020 Chichester Corporate Challenge series is just under three weeks away, taking place on Wednesday, February 26. Full details and entry forms for the main senior event and the schools’ races are on the Chichester Runners website.