bsoa :: British School's Champ

Today saw another fairly cold day in Yorkshire, with school’s from all over the country coming to compete at Temple Newsam Estate. This area was used for the British School’s back in 1991, and not much has changed since then – there were still plenty of paths for the younger courses, and lots of blood-draining brambles to rip apart the older juniors.

The day was a great success thanks to a large team of helpers, headed by Peter Haines of AIRE who was the organiser for the event. A number of people from neighbouring club EBOR were also there to help out, and everything ran smoothly. Special guest for the day was Heather Monro, who had got up especially early from the GB Squad Inaugural weekend at Plas-y-Brenin in Wales to make the long trip back up to Leeds. She was available during the day to sign autographs, answer questions and was also interviewed over the loudspeaker system, as well as giving out prizes at the prize-giving.

As for the results, it was yet another victory for Ulverston Victoria High School in the Large Secondary category under the watchful eye of their teacher Claire Evans, and their strength in depth was apparent for all to see as their 2nd team were only beaten by 1 other school, although they didn’t have any individual class winners. Another fine performance was had by the ever-impressive Burford Primary School, who once again won the Primary School category under the guidance of teacher Merlyn Vyner. Burford went 1 better than Ulverston, though, with their 2nd team beating all other school’s showing remarkable ability across the school.

In the Middle-Prep School there was a fine team performance from Bramcote Lorne School, who finished 3rd last year and had 2 podium places on the individual races. In the Small Secondary School category The Mount School, York overcame last years’ winners Clayesmore Senior School. York College once again won the Tertiary category, keeping onto the trophy which they won last year.

In the Individual classes there were some exceedingly close times at the top of some classes, and also some very impressive wins in others. No class was closer than in the G5 and B9 classes, where Penny Oliver of King Henry VIII Junior beat K. Packer & G. Allpass of Burford School by just 1 second, which was the same margin between Matthew Halliday (King Henry VIII Senior) and Michael Hoare (Alun School). This is the first time Matthew has won this event. In the B6 class Christopher Nash (Ashton County Primary) beat pre-race favourite Aidan Smith (Dore Primary) by 16 seconds, whilst brother Matthew Nash (Ashton Community Science College) won by even less, just 8 seconds in front of Robin Tett (King Edward VIII). There was another close battle in B10 with Ralph Street (Tiffin School) beating Peter Hodkinson (Chilwell School) by 6 seconds, meaning they finished in the exact same order as they did at last years’ event.

Florence Haines (daughter of organiser Peter) had a storming run round the G7 course to win by 2 and a half minutes, which made it 3 wins in a row. Emily Benham (The Burgate School) had a fine performance in the G12 course, beating runner-up and defending champion Joanna Halliday (King Henry VIII Senior) by over 2 minutes. Meanwhile, Emily’s younger brother Jack Benham (The Burgate School) kept up the family form by winning B7 by 2 minutes from Thomas Louth (King's College School).

There were 6 girls who retained their British School’s Champion title – Florence Haines (Ilkley Grammar – 3rd in a row), Katrin Harding (Lancaster Girls’ Grammar), Harriet Batten (King Henry VIII Senior – 4th in a row), Julia Blomquist (Charters – 3rd in a row), Alice Butt (South Wilts Grammar – 5th top 3 in last 5 years), Stefanie Blomquist (Clayesmore Senior). Just 2 boys retained their titles – Ralph Street (Tiffin) and Adam Bushnell (Adams’ Grammar – 4th win in 5 years).

Course planner Tony Carlyle was pleased with the performances of all the juniors, controls were collected in on time as no-one was out too long, and winning times were right on nearly every course.

Congratulations also to our many spot-prize winners - especially Peter Hodkinson, Matthew Halliday and Charlotte Myers who all won a GB Squad top signed by the GB Senior Squad.

For a complete run down of Individual, Age Class and School results see the Full Results
Some Photos courtesy of Wendles .

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