|The first race of the season saw a record turnout with 485 Senior and 67 junior finishers. The Juniors unfortunately had to endure a proper downpour but for the Seniors the rain stopped soon after the start of the race giving way to very good running weather. As in other recent races at Whitbread Hollow the Senior course was very demanding with a climb up to Beachy Head. Please see results tab for the results.
Please note the cross country on 12 January will now be held at Warren hill instead of Heathfield Park. It will be jointly hosted by Eastbourne Rovers and Hailsham Harriers. Thank you to both clubs for stepping in at short notice.
Just a few reminders in particular following on from points on the committee meeting as per an earlie news item:
2. Seniors 10:30 start as before
3. If pre registered pick up your number from your club rep.
4. If paying on the day adding to the queue will close 30 minutes before race start to allow those in the queue to be processed ahead of race start and avid delays to race start.
a) If pre reg you need to keep your number: you use the same number at all races. The club rep or (other other person from the club) should print the list of pre reg and tick all runners present: this is then handed in to registration before the start of the race. If the list has already been handed in before you are ticked please go to registration and tick the list (you should not need to join the main queue). The list is used to check runners who start to the finish results and is an important check to ensure the results are as accurate as they can be.
b) If non pre reg you can use your number at future races. Seniors however you must queue, re register the number and pay the £5 or £7 at each race or else you will not be included in the results. As Juniors are free they do not need to re-register the number but if you have been issued with more than one number please use the last number issued (because that is the one recorded on the computer against your name.
Looking forward to the start of a new season
The races have now been confirmed as follows:
At the committee meeting last Wednesday 7 September points/changes were agreed as below:
1. Junior race start time: U15/17 9:50am, U11/13 9:55am (previously 10am). But can all Juniors please be at the start at 9:50am U11/U13 to hear any directions or safety announcement but wait until the U15/U17 have started before lining up on the line. This is to allow more time between Junior and Senior races and the split start so the Juniors can see who is in their race and to make it easier for marshals. The senior race will be at 10:30am as before.
2. To hopefully avoid delays to start of race from late entrants if entering on the day you must be in the queue at least 30 mins before the race start (so 9:20am for juniors 10:am for seniors).
3. Charges are unchanged: £10 pre registration for all 6 races(UKA paid up members of participating clubs only) or £5 entry on day (£7 if not UKA reg). The date for submission of pre registration for all six races by club reps is 30 September this year but you club may set a date a little before this to allow for entries and payment to be checked ahead of submitting the form.
5. To qualify for an individual prize you must have completed at least 4 races. This applies to both Junior and senior categories. This is for individual awards only, team scores are based on the results for each race.
7. Portslade Hedgehoppers and Brighton and Hove Frontrunners have been accepted as new clubs this year.
8. Hastings AC and Hastings Runners will now run as a combined team.
9. As in previous years junior categories are based on age at 31 August and Senior categories age at first race. As before and in accordance with UKA you must have been at least 17 on 31 August to compete in the senior event (even if you turn 17 before the first race).
10. The races this year are:
Oct 16th - Blackcap - Lewes
Please see the Rules tab for further details. The Events tab will be updated once the December and January venues are confirmed which should be by the start of October.
CROSS COUNTRY SEASON 2020/21
The committee have concluded that it was it was not viable to put on cross country races for 2020/21. A brief explanation as to the reasons why are given below.
You can operate races on one of 2 bases:
1. Competition with a maximum of 12 athletes per wave racing in traditional format for less than 15 minutes...…….
2. Competition longer than 15 minutes can take place but must be set up so that social distancing can be maintained at all times.
Unless we reduce the race distance to 1 mile the first does not work. Effectively to maintain social distancing under 2 we would need to use a time trial format say a runners going every 10 seconds: if we had 300 runners it would take and hour to get everyone through the start, the results would be difficult to compile. There are further issues re parking: we could not encourage car share but without that most courses do not have sufficient parking.
Essentially the guidance seems to be geared to small events rather than mass participation. We could have a league with very restricted numbers say just 3 from each club but then if becomes an 'elite' race and really is not what this league is about.
Further it just seems inappropriate to organise an event with a large number or people turning up when generally people are limited to groups of 6 and may not even be able to meet close family or friends.
Regretably we concluded it is not viable for this season.
We had planned to present awards at the first race of the season but in the circumstances these are being distributed to the club reps to hand out to the award winners. Please see the Resuls tab for the awards and final results for 19/20.
AGM and update 03/09/2020
Yesterday evening (02 September 2020) we held the AGM (via Zoom). Key points are:
1. 2020/21 season. On 28 August England Athletics advised that steps are being taken towards a restricted return to Cross Country competition. Key points are:
a) 17 October 2020 is provisional date when Licensed cross country can resume
b) Cross Country competition will be unable to resume in the traditional format, adaptations will have to be made based on the current circumstances regarding the virus.
c) Guidelines are being prepared and are expected to be issued during the week commending 14 September
Currently we decided it was not practical to plan any events pending release of the guidance: we cannot second guess what restrictions the guidance will place.
What we do not know at this stage is whether England Athletics is proposing a return to full open competition in October or whether this is intended to be restricted to elite competition or competition with restricted numbers.
Thus unfortunately currently we do not know whether it will be viable for our league to re-commence events in the short term.
A further meeting of the core committee will be held on 30 September (by Zoom) to consider the guidelines: at this meeting we will consider whether it is viable to put on events within the guidelines and if so what measures will need to be taken to comply with the guidelines. If we do not consider it is possible to recommence at this stage we will explain why.
A meeting of all club reps will then be held (by Zoom) on 7 October to consider the conclusions of the core committee.
If events cannot take place currently we will continue to assess any changes in guidelines to see if they can recommence later in the year: eg have a shorter season: perhaps extending into spring.
A further issue we will also need to address if events are to go ahead is people travelling to events. A number of our events have limited parking and we have only been able to continue to use these courses with the support our runners have shown for car sharing, and in some cases mini buses or coaches.
2. 2019/20 prize giving. It had been intended to do the prizegiving at the first event: originally planned for Ashdown Forest on 11 October: but clearly this will definetly not be going ahead as regardless of the guidelines no events are to take place prior to 17 October. Whilst we would have liked to have had the normal presentation to which all runners can attend given the continuing uncertainty of when events may recommence the trophies and prizes will now be sent to club representatives to distribute. A list of winners will be published shortly.
3. Age categories and team scoring going forward
When events do eventually start there is a change to both age categories and team structure.
a) The league has prevously retained the 'traditional' age categories or men becoming vet at 40 but ladies at 35, thus the male individual brackets have been in 5 year brackets from 40 to 70 whilst female 35 to 65. For teams there were 10 year brackets of 40 to 60 for men and 35 to 55 for ladies. We concluded there was no reason to continue with the disparity and accordingly going forward both men and ladies will use 40 as the first vet bracket: thus for both men and ladies individual brackets will now be 40 to 70 and team 40 to 60.
b) There has been a welcome steady increase in ladies participating in our events and also a changing the age profile of our runners: it is great to see both men and laides runners still competing in higher age brackets. To reflect this the team score table is being revised (and also to reflect the change to ladies age brackets):
19/20 from 20/21
MS 4 4
M40 3 3
M50 2 3
M60 1 2
Total male 10 12
FS 2 2
F40 2 2
F50 1 2
F60 1 2
Total Female 6 8
Total 16 20
The size of the scoring team is increased from 16 to 20 with increased emphases on ladies and older contegories which we hope will continue to encourage the increase in participation from these categories.
Clearly in the immediate term we do not know if events will take place at all or if they do whether there may need to be changes to the team structure in the short term to comply with the guidelines.
4 EA affiliation
To comply with England Athletics guidelines only affiliated clubs can compete in the league and discounted pre entry for all events (£10 for all 6 events as before compared to £4 per event) will only be available to athletes affiliated as individuals.
Following advice from England Athletics re COVID 19 that all events should be cancelled until the end of April unfortunately we have had to cancel the cross country at Bodiam on 5 April.
Quite a mild day today, last time we ran this in 2017 it was freezing cold with snow on the ground. Also fairly dry. But that hill at the end was not any easier! Full results are on the results tab: key finishers below.
- Lewes AC were first team: 2nd Hailsham Harriers and 3rd Wadhurst
- 1st Man Chris Dodd of Eastbourne, 2nd Craig Sharp of Central Park Athletes, 3rd Aled Anderson Arena 80
- 1st Lady Allissa Ellis of Hailsham, 2nd Cat Bounds of Hailsham, 3rd Sue Fry also Hailsham
- U11 Boys 1st Finlay Goodman (Hastings Runners), 2nd Ilya Korchev (Eastbourne), 3rd Luke Draper (Wadhurst)
- U11 Girls 1st Isabell Edwardson (unattached), 2nd Georgina Nickalls (Crowborough), 3rd Hariet Nickalls (Crowborough)
- U13 Boys 1st Joshua Wakefield (Eastbourne), 2nd Zach Morris (Crowborough)
- U13 Girls 1st Darcy Pring (Lewes), 2nd Zante Gegory-Westbook (Crowborough), 3rd Mattie Cassidy (Crowborough)
- U15 Boys 1st Eddie Walley (Unatached), 2nd Rubin Coppard (Crowborough)
- U15 Girls 1st Hope Sankey (Bexhill Tri), 2nd Maddy Brandt (Hastings AC)
- U17 Boys 1st Matthew Terry (Run Wednesdays)
- U17 Girls no entrants
There are 500+ photos on the photos page taken by my wife Lorraine West.