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Bourne Grammar athletes compete in the national schools cross-country finals at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall



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Bourne Grammar School produced their best-ever series of results at the national cross-country finals.

They had four teams reach the stage for the first time ever as they travelled to the event, which was held at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

An early start to cover the 332-mile trek saw the runners greeted by excellent facilities that led through to multi-tiered playing fields.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

The intermediate girls, having completed their warm-up, began the challenging course.

A fast start overwhelmed the girls initially as the 150-plus students charged into the first uphill before a turn and long 400 metre downhill section that led to the lowest part of the school field before the five inclines began, interspersed with the odd plateau as the girls rounded a rugby pitch or two. A second lap then followed before heading to the finish.

Faith Perkins led the team out the starting pen and would ultimately finish in 97th, with Yvette Annis very close behind in 101st.

Millie Doud did well to take 116th position with Emma Aldred close behind in 127th, while Madison Prince and Lily Rundle completed the course in touching distance of each other in 137th and 139th respectively.

A 27th place finish as a team was an outstanding achievement in their first final, hopefully inspiring them to repeat this next year.

For Bourne, a brief interlude followed as the junior boys took to the course, before the senior girls stepped into the pens.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

Unquestionably, Bourne fielded one of the most experienced teams but also one with a further two years of competition in this age group.

It was difficult to predict what to expect here as the qualifying round had seen the girls well beaten by a Bradford Grammar team, yet the girls themselves were far ahead of the next competition.

As it materialised, the team they had met in the previous round went on to win the competition and the girls showed themselves to be very strong on the national stage, running the race of their season when it mattered to finish 10th nationally.

Aoife Glasswell (26th) was home first after running a great start to give her team a chance to get out their pen initially and only improving as the race went on.

Hannah Taylor and Erin Cox had similar starts, racing to the first corner and also using this to launch themselves to return quality finishes for 29th and 40th.

Charlotte Cullen rounded off the team with a sprint finish in which she gained at least five places in the last 100 metres to finish 74th.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

All girls showed their trademark determination and competitive fire for the final.

Next up were the intermediate boys who were in strong spirits as they entered the starting pen, focused on the race ahead of them.

Johan Coughlan led the team out of the pen with a strong start and proved he was on top form by finishing the race in 13th, the school’s best ranked position of the day.

The boys faced a tough field of runners, while battling the elements in true cross-country style weather of hail.

However, the boys’ grit and determination shone through as they powered on through the race.

Thomas Preston was next over the line in 42nd, running an excellent race, followed by Alex Sadler in 119th, closely followed in by Bayley Graham in 121st.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

Rounding off the team was Theo Saralis in 135th and Owen Nazaruk-Wheeler in 139th, leaving the boys with an overall placing of 18th. All of the team ran a brilliant race, warranting their place in the national final.

To conclude the festivities, the senior boys team had a blend of significant experience combined with the exuberance of youth.

Harry Hewitt and Alex Galpin, members of the fourth placed team finish from 2016, were joined by Dan Galpin (the third Year 12 student) and three eager Year 11s - Seb Beedell, Owen James and George Groom.

A promising start from Harry saw him settle into a strong position in the low teens, which he maintained throughout, followed by Seb but some distance behind.

Alex, third out the pen, was closely followed by Owen who made an excellent start, with Dan a little further back. George found the pack had closed his route out and had to fight initially to make headway.

The 5.6k course had the added luxury of a further 60 metre awkward incline to add to the already muddy, worn, wet surface, but the boys again proved to run magnificently.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

Harry maintained his position and Seb Beedell’s rapid cadence saw him pass runner after runner.

Both Dan and Alex made significant ground as their relentless, methodic style again saw them move past others.

Owen too made ground on others, passing them slowly but steadily. For George, however, the niggling, irritating injury became increasingly worse and sadly, despite battling through the pain, was forced to stop after two laps.

As the race drew to a close, Seb amazingly had Harry in his sights and with 300m to go they were side by side so an exciting finish was guaranteed.

Briefly, Harry slipped behind Seb and that was enough for Harry to finish with a final push to ensure he came first home for Bourne in 16th and Seb in 18th.

Alex followed in 56th with Dan having clawed his way back to 80th, concluding the team score. Owen followed soon after, finishing in 87th - an excellent result in this age group.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.

A final team position of sixth nationally ensured that this year was to be the best series of performances across the teams by Bourne Grammar at the national finals.

The next event on the calendar will be the Lincolnshire Schools Championships on Saturday, January 15, at Burghley Park, Stamford.

More than 50 students from Bourne Grammar have been selected to run at these following their top 20 finish at the South Lincs Championships in October.

Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.
Runners from Bourne Grammar who braved the elements at the national schools cross-country finals that were staged at the Tretherras School in Newquay, Cornwall.


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