Another Successful Southerns

Southerns Cross Country Championship

28th January 2017

by Chris Large


After coming back from Lanzarote I was full of the joys of running and ready to get myself some races in the diary. Cross Countries seemed an obvious solution and encouraged by Andy Inchley I booked myself into the ‘Southerns’ down at Parliament Hill in London. It turned out to be in the words of Pepperami “A bit of an animal”.

The kind Amy Farnfield drove me and Jo Sharples to north-west London. It would have helped if I’d known the distance beforehand, funny thing was that I just assumed that it would be a normal cross-country distance i.e. the 9km or 10km. It was only whilst going down in the car that Amy and Jo told me that the men’s race is 14km. I knew at that point it would be a tough day.

Support from spectators was very good. I have to give particular shout out to two ladies standing at the top of one of the hills on a corner. There were both wearing high-vis jackets, had nothing to do with LBAC but were giving me some of the biggest shouts of anyone. I also got great support from all the LBAC spectators including Amy. She was shouting so loud that I didn’t even recognise her voice. Jo kindly took some photos which are good memento of a tough race.

Chris enjoying the battle with fellow runners

One of the nice things about running is the banter involved. As the leader came past me, one of my fellow runners of a similar speed shouted: “Don’t worry about him, he won the Yorkshire marathon last week!” A little bit of humour for us slower runners to lighten the situation and to take our minds off the rest of the race.

I think the hardest part psychologically came after two laps. As I came into lap three I could hear the announcer over the tannoy, giving out prizes for the first three runners. Having already completed two very tough laps and with another to go it made my heart sink, but I didn’t let it get to me. I just stuck to my guns, stuck to the race, the moment, and kept going.

As usual there was great support from Uncle Pete and Richard Inchley too. On finishing Richard asked me whether the race had given me my running mojo back. My response: “absolutely”.


My time 01:24:05. Placed 1031.


The rest of LBAC did a  mighty fine job on the day even with a few members unable to make it. The iconic Parliament Hill course was unusually mud-less and so it wasn’t quite as much of a slog as it has been in previous years.


  • LBAC had runners in 7 of the 10 races
  • We had a scoring team in the U15 boys and the Senior men
  • Both of our Senior ladies finished in under 40 minutes.
  • Elliot Hind finished in 58th position in a field of over 1000 in the Senior men
  • The team of 9 Senior men finished in 21st overall for the day in amongst some big names and 7 places ahead of Chiltern League rivals St Albans.
  • Everybody enjoyed themselves!

All in all, some very good preparation for the real important race of Saturday 11th February at Campbell Park. We look forward to seeing you there!