Weekend Report - 9th/10th December 2017
Olley and Barker Take on Europeans for Great Britain
Chris Olley and Phoebe Barker competed in the European Cross Country Championships for Great Britain, on Sunday, in Slovakia and both came away with a team medal.
Olley was part of the GB under 23 men's squad of six, with the first four home scoring for the team. He was always towards the front of the field and at one stage found himself leading for a short spell. The course was flat and fast, despite the freezing conditions, which kept the lead pack closely bunched.
At the finish Olley was an excellent 13th, running 24.52 for the 8230 metre course and being just seventeen seconds away from the eventual winner, Gressier, of France. As the second Brit home, just two seconds and one place behind team mate Mahamed Mahamed, Olley helped GB to the bronze medals, behind France and Belgium.
Phoebe Barker was initially named as first reserve for the Great Britain, under 20 women's team, having finished 7th at the trial race, in November. However, she received a late call up to the team on the previous Wednesday. Barker finished 43rd in a time of 14.49 for the 4180 metre course and was the fifth Brit home, as her fellow country woman Harriet Knowles-Jones won in 13.48.
All six squad members, including Barker, were awarded with team gold medals.
On Saturday two of Tonbridge AC's ladies continued their recent good form, at Horspath near Oxford. The venue hosted the South of England Inter Counties and Veterans Cross Country Championships.
Lucy Reid finished an excellent 6th in the women's inter counties race, whilst Maria Heslop won the over 50 age group event in the Veterans Championship. Infact Heslop put on such a good show that she also defeated the winner of the over 40 event by eighteen seconds.
Fraser Gordon was the most successful of the remaining Tonbridge contingent, as he placed 4th in the under 15 boys' race, whilst Katie Goodge had perhaps her best race on the country so far this Winter, with 14th in the under 15 girls' event. Both Gordon and Goodge were the second scorers home for their respective Kent teams.
Click here for race videos from Horspath.
The indoor track season starts to operate alongside cross country for the rest of the season and at Cardiff on Sunday Kieran Eland once again improved his 600 metres personal best to 80.05, as he won a high quality men's race.
Click here for a video of the race