Double delight for Dacorum & Tring at the start of the new season

Dacorum & Tring AC's Olivia Edwards, right, finished fourth overall in the U11 girls race at the Keysoe Equestrian Centre. Picture (c) Gary Mitchell

Dacorum & Tring AC's Olivia Edwards, right, finished fourth overall in the U11 girls race at the Keysoe Equestrian Centre. Picture (c) Gary Mitchell

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Dacorum & Tring AC had a stellar start to the 2015-16 Chiltern League cross country season, with the men’s and women’s teams each finishing first in Division Two.

There were a number of fantastic individual performances from the D&T athletes, and a strong team effort from all 42 adult and youth members.

The U13 boys had a brillliant race, finishing as second team in the division

The U13 boys had a brillliant race, finishing as second team in the division

The race, held at the Keysoe Equestrian Centre near Bedford, saw some 600 runners representing more than 30 clubs from eight counties competing over a range of distances and age groups, from U11s to seniors and veterans.

In the men’s race, Jack Parslow finished a superb first overall in the division in a time of 31.31 over a challenging 9k course, with Jamie Marlow crossing the line in sixth.

Next to finish were Steve Russell (30th), Matt Hamilton (31st), Richard Slack (37th), Andrew Trevillion (38th), Matt Earles (39th) and Steve Shaw (40th), with Robert Salt, Darren Mills, Paul Glyn, Richard Stevens, Jim Mason, John Slack and Malcolm Sargeant all doing their part to push the team to the top of the table.

The highlight of the ladies’ race was the fabulous first place finish from Kate Rennie, who ran as a non-scorer for the team, and crossed the line in a time of 22.23 for the 6.1k course.

Samantha Fawcett was second for the senior ladies, followed by Ania Gabb (5th), Sarah Grover (19th) and Samantha Sullivan (21st), with Lizzie Roberts, Tina Le, Victoria Thornley, Michelle Ashwell, Denise Burford and Samantha Hawkridge contributing to the result.

The U15 girls had a superb outing, with Maddie Perry and Indira Patel finishing fourth and fifth overall, just two seconds apart and less than 40 seconds behind top spot. With teammate Hannah Knight, they combined to finish as third team overall on the day.

The young athletes posted equally brilliant results, starting with young Olivia Edwards, who is only 10 and who finished fourth overall in the U11 girls’ race, where Divisions One and Two compete together – and she was only six seconds off first place.

The U13 girls were next, and the Dacorum & Tring team finished third overall, thanks to strong runs from Jessica Hoar (10th), Jess Benveniste (18th) and Emma To (19th).

The U13 boys had a brilliant race, finishing as second team in the division, with Freddie Truman Williams in third place, followed by Adam Jolly (6th), Jamie Bailey (10th) and Sam Burnell (13th).

The U15 girls ran well to finish as third team in the division, with Maddie Perry and Indira Patel in fourth and fifth place respectively, separated by only two seconds, and Hannah Knight in 39th in a strong field, while Kristian Imroth finished second for the U15 boys, followed by Luke Burford in 19th.

Rhys Rowlands had a great start to his season, finishing first in the U17 men’s age group, with Matthew Renphrey in ninth, and Grace Birdseye was seventh in the U17 women’s race, in her first year in the age group.