CCCL 17/18 – That’s the Wrap!

Chiltern Cross Country League – Fixture 5 – Campbell Park


Another Chiltern Cross Country League season comes to an end and once again we are pleased to maintain our position in Division 1. As mentioned at the recent AGM, it wasn’t many years ago that we would never have dreamed of even reaching Division 1 so we must give ourselves a pat on the back for staying up there with the big boys.

Part of the reason for this is how the club has grown and we are now no longer reliant on one particular age group to pull us through. The ladies team in particular has strengthened so much that we can still put a good team out despite missing a number of key runners.

The start of the Senior Ladies race with Buzzards in the thick of it

However, overall as a club, there was an 11% decrease in participation from this season compared to last, so although individually we are really doing well, we can still improve on turning out to 1 or 2 more fixtures each to really boost our final club position. We did however, have a remarkable 20 people who did all five fixtures and they deserve a shout-out so well done to:

  • Ash Carter (U11 Boys)
  • Harriet Butlin (U11 Girls)
  • Oscar Butlin, Sid Mead & Arty Mead (U13 Boys)
  • Julia Bell (U13 Girls)
  • Harry Bell & Will Rossiter (U15 Boys)
  • Niquole Carter, Alicia Down & Amelia Butlin (U15 Girls)
  • Dana Carter (U17 Women)
  • Stuart Blofeld, James Bell, Michael Furness, Gareth Bird, Chris Dimmock & Sean Westrope (Senior Men)
  • Coralie Anderson & Alison Bell (Senior Women)

Additionally there were a further 21 people who did four out of the five fixtures and so we have 41 people featuring in the individual results this year. In case you haven’t found them you can see them here:

On the day it was gloriously sunny and quite pleasant occasionally in the sheltered areas on the course. However, some stretches were straight into the biting wind and rain to remind us that it is still winter!

Nigel and Mark battle through the mud

The Campbell Park course is relentless in its undulations with the flattest part of the course also being one of the muddiest but every single one of the fifty people we had out racing put in a strong performance. It is too much to go through and mention every individual and apologies if you had a great race and you’re not mentioned, but we’ve tried to pick out a few key performances.

The U11s are the only age group to have their results include both Divisions so Thalia Mason’s finish of 17th is very impressive and we look forward to here completing a full season next year. Similarly, Toby Evans led the boys home in 28th position out of 84 which was a great effort.

We had some remarkably consistent results across the season. Coralie Anderson finished between 53 and 58 in all five races, Oscar Butlin similarly was between 22 and 29 throughout but by far the champion of this was Daniel Horner. Daniel quietly comes along to each fixture, runs strongly and without fuss in a very strong U17 race then quietly goes home. In each of the four fixtures he ran this year he came 24th. Now that is consistency!

In the senior men Stuart Blofeld continued his huge improvement with every race. Back in Oxford he finished 160th and by the time he finished Campbell Park he was up to 74th. Not quite his best ever, but getting there. Despite having been running in the men’s race in the league for nearly 20 years, Tom Inchley did manage his best ever division 1 position on Saturday to lead the men’s team home in 33rd place.

Stuart Blofeld finishes strongly on the day and for the season!

Our leading positions overall for the season came in the F35 category with the aforementioned Coralie finishing 5th and Liz Peters 4th for the efforts. This also meant that the veteran women were our highest place team in 5th place. With a number of our runners missing from this category surely the only way is up next year!

For the season the club finished comfortably in 8th position in Division only 700 points short of Dacorum & Tring AC. The overall men’s team also finished in 8th while the ladies went one place better and finished in 7th. Both of these teams include all age groups.

Whilst we were maybe not completely at our best this season, LBAC have become a mainstay in Division 1 with consistency and strength in depth. We can hope that we will continue this next season and perhaps even push up the table.

We still have the Nationals to come at the end of this month so good luck to everybody going down to the iconic Parliament Hill for the day!

If you didn’t compete in Cross Country this season please give it a go! Not only is it great fun and provides superb camaraderie among club members of all age groups, it’s important for strengthening up ahead of the road running season. So all you pavement pounders, come and join us in the mud!

Hands up if you love Cross Country!!