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  • Writer's pictureClem Dixon

Kent XC League - Norman Park

Updated: Feb 15, 2022

Megan on her way to a well deserved victory

The Senior Women bring home trophies...

Megan Marchant not only won the last Kent league race of the season but she also won the league as well. Not to be out done Julie Backley came 9th, won the V45 category over the season and was the Masters League champion. Chris Bond won the V55 category.

Julie Backley

Megan gave us a bit of a surprise when she went straight to the front of the race not least because she had just been advised that this was unnecessary. She said that she felt great and so just went for it - her warm weather training clearly worked. She thoroughly deserved that win and the title. So did Julie in her first XC season for decades. As for Christine, she is not a fan of the new 8k distance but still pulled it out of the bag.

Katie Sanders

We were a bit down on numbers on Saturday and the fact that the race was held over the first weekend of half term really didn’t help as this meant a number of the ladies were unavailable. We had just eight runners and although we had hopes of also winning the team of three overall title we knew that we would be up against it. Katie Sanders came in 13th place to complete the team of three. In the end we were equal on points with Tonbridge but they scored 4 fewer than us and so were awarded the title. Nevertheless the silver medal was a great achievement. The three other runners to complete scoring in the team of six were Lucy Marlow who has showed reliable consistency in 15th, Hayley Newman (31st) and last but by no means least Christine (57th). So we also won silver overall in the team of six. Marian Hine was 67th and Monica Whitefield was 86th.

Lucy Marlow

Christine Bond

Its been a really good league season for the ladies. The younger team members have been doing remarkably well and as ever our masters ladies have been a great strength. We also have a record number entered for the Nationals so who knows...

Senior men - 4th again

Another 4th place finish but there were plenty of positives: Chris Loudon's 11th place was his highest in the League to date, a total turnout of 19 was very respectable and with 13 in the top 100 we had good strength in depth. In the 4th placed 4 to score team Chris was backed up by James MacDonald, Tom Brooke and Luke Martin. When you see them training together there does not appear to be much to separate Tom and Luke but here it was Tom who had the edge by half a minute over 8k. Our 4th place in the final standings was more or less assured coming into this the final fixture and was indeed confirmed.

In the 12 to score it was Steve Groom in 80th who had the honour of completing the team, another 4th place, but sufficient for us to hang on to 3rd spot in the final standings thanks to having finished 3rd at Swanley and 2nd at Footscray.

A feature of this season has been that virtually every race we have welcomed new faces to the squad and this was no exception with both Luke Martin and Ray Ramsey running in Cambridge vests for the first time.

In the final standing of the individual league table it was Angus Vosper who was our highest placed runner in 9th place. As a 17 year old Angus has the option to run in either the Under 20s or the Seniors and to his credit chose the Seniors and has scored us valuable points at every fixture. Of the others from the club who completed all four races Luke Ford was 20th, Christian Poulton 28th, Graham Maynard 34th and Martin Hawkins 60th. In addition to which Martin was the winner of the M60 category. Martin's first race in the Kent League was in 1992, over ploughed fields at Hoo, 30 years later and he has finally won something!

It must be admitted that Norman Park is hardly the most challenging of cross country courses, particularly after the period of sustained dry weather we have had recently, but all enjoyed running in the sunshine and those that complain too loudly should be careful what they wish for: how many would really want to go back to ploughed fields at Hoo?

Chris Loudon

James Macdonald

Tom Brooke

Luke Martin

Angus Vosper

Ben Rew

Luke Ford

Andy Doyle

David Reader

Clinton Lowe

Ray Ramsey & Christian Poulton

Steve Groom

Graham Maynard

Clem Dixon

Martin Hawkins

Ian McCarthy

Pat Austin

John Murphy

1 Megan Marchant 29:41

9 Julie Backley 31:27

13 Katie Sanders 32:10

15 Lucy Marlow 32:39

31 Hayley Newman 34:36

57 Christine Bond 38:14

67 Marian Hine 39:32

86 Monica Whitefield 42:20

11 Chris Loudon 26:05

23 James MacDonald 27:28

28 Tom Brooke 27:47

35 Luke Martin 28:15

42 Angus Vosper 28:29

47 Ben Rew 29:00

50 Luke Ford 29:10

53 Andy Doyle 29:23

67 David Reader 30:23

70 Clinton Lowe 30:39

75 Christian Poulton 30:53

80 Steve Groom 31:08

85 Ray Ramsey 31:25

116 Graham Maynard 32:47

155 Clem Dixon 35:29

163 Martin Hawkins 36:11

202 Ian McCarthy 39:58

206 Pat Austin 42:11

209 John Murphy 43:09


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