Wins for Freda & Tom at County XC

Eastbourne Rovers’ Under 15s led the way at the recent Sussex Cross Country League fixture at the South of England Showground near Ardingly on November 11th. Outstanding wins came from Freda Pearce in the 4K U15 girls race and Tom Petherick in the boys race.

On a very challenging hilly course, Freda broke away on the second lap and finished with a winning margin of nearly a minute. Tom, in a closely fought race, broke away from the lead group near to the finish, along with a Chichester athlete, and finally out sprinted his rival up the last small hill and finishing straight.

This signals a big breakthrough for Tom whose consistent training has paid off to give him his first ever league win.

Freda was backed up by Raya Petrova, returning to top form in 3rd, and by the fast improving Lexie McLean, still a first year in this age group, in 9th. This sealed the team win. They were followed by the B team runners, Chae Wai (15th), Katy Brown (24th) and Grace Allitt (45th) who were all pleased to have improved since the first fixture in October.

Tom was followed by George Armstrong Smith in 6th and Teddy Jones in 20th, giving them 2nd place as a team, a great performance as they were missing several of their teammates, two of whom were competing in the Cardiff Cross Challenge that day.

Other notable performances came in the U13 boys’ race (3K) where the A team achieved 2nd place (Byron Roberts 4th, Archie Franklin 9th and Adam Meyer 11th.) Fintan Pearce had an excellent run in the U17 boys’ race (5K) where he placed 3rd behind two boys who have run internationally. Ilya Korchev was close behind in 5th and Kaleb Berhane completed the team in 20th giving them a team position of 4th.

In the Senior Ladies’ race, which combines U17, U20, Senior and all Masters categories, Eleanor Strevens was the leading Eastbourne runner finishing 6th overall and 1st U20. The Masters’ team was delighted to win their team competiton thanks to strong runs from Jenny Brown (2nd V45), Heather Jenner (5th V35) and Katie Arnold (10th V35).

Luke Thomsett, Benjamin Brown and James Stephen had strong runs in the U20, Senior Men and Masters combined race with Luke placing 15th Senior and Ben and James finishing 9th and 10th U20s. The club was pleased to have complete Senior and Masters teams, the Seniors finishing 2nd in Division 2, the Masters 10th.

Other Eastbourne Rovers placings: U11 girls: Poppy Charlwood 18th. U13 girls: Chyna Wai 18th; Alicia Stone 27th; Grace Luford-Brown 32nd; Georgia Lennard 34th. U13 boys: Charlie Davey 37th; Xavier Bray 38th. Ladies: Flick Webster 20th V45. Men: Matt Southam 34th Senior; Stuart Pelling 35th Senior; Richard Davis 11th V40; Juriy Korchev 35th V40; Phil Wood 9th V50.

The next league race will be at Stanmer Park, Brighton, on December 2nd. The following week a record-breaking thirteen U13, U15 and U17 Rovers’ athletes are looking forward to representing Sussex at the South of England Inter-Counties Cross Country Championships near Oxford.

The men’s Cross Country team at Ardingly.