MMKAC make it four in a row in Cross-Country League

Jack Meijer
Jack Meijer

MMKAC stormed to their fourth consecutive overall team victory in the Chiltern Cross-Country League Division One match held at Keysoe.

More than 100 club members competed and saw MMKAC extend their lead over rivals Bedford & County. The win on the day accumulated 3247pts to give a grand total of 14,888, 1096 ahead of Bedford. With one match remaining in Campbell Park, Milton Keynes next month their defence of the League title looks highly likely.

Charlotte Underwood

Charlotte Underwood

From the ten races, MMKAC achieved two individual wins and three second places and in the team events, two victories were taken and no less than six second spots. The under 11 girls race over 2km opened the match and saw a thrilling finish as Sonja De Koning chased down a 10m deficit in the finish straight to pip her rival from Chiltern Harriers on the line, both being given the same of 7.51. Annabel Sanders was a fine 3rd and Jessica Kempton 18th but Chiltern Harriers just headed them in the team scoring.

Jack Meijer took an early lead in the under 17men’s 6km race and raced away for a good win over second placed Alfie Yabsley. With Ewan Forsythe 5th and Marcus Lovell 15th the team closed in second, just 2-points down on Bedford. However with the one match remaining overall MMKAC lead Bedford by a single point so “down to the wire” as they say in Campbell Park.

In the men’s 10km race there were 33 MK runners from the field of 214. As such they put their scoring ten in the first 50 finishers led, on this occasion, by Charles Wheeler, 9th overall. The club championships were held within the races and as twin brother George was next home (12th) the duo took the top two positions on the podium. Steve Tuttle, recovering from injury, placed 17th, Graham Jones 21st, Jamie Seddon 25th, Conrad Webber 27th, and Chris Hearn 29th(7 in 30!). The scoring team was completed by Ian Wood (43rd), Tom Comerford (44th) and Steve Herring (50th). Steve took the club veterans M40 award with Paul Sutherland first M50 and Paul Mason first M60.

The senior ladies raced over 6km and again Lara Bromilow had to settle for second place behind Rosie Keane (Luton), but this time was much closer than in previous races. Natasha Baker and Rachel Robinson had a close dual for second scorer, Natasha finally closed in 14th with Rachel a place down. The winning team of six over Dacorum & Tring was completed by Diane Baldwin (29th), Katie James (32nd) and Mel Wright (41st). 104 finished.

Sonja De Koning

Sonja De Koning

The under 15 boys continue to lead their overall team championship and on the day James Dowsett finished 4th in their 4km race. He was well backed-up by Brian Sayle (9th), Robert Hickman (10th) and Le Freeland (13th). They take almost a 100pts lead over Chiltern Harriers to the final match.

Elder sister Barbara De Koning valiantly tried to snatch victory in the 4km under 15 girls race but Bedford’s Tia Wilson held on to win by just 1-second. But the MK girls had a comfortable team win as the fast improving Ella Carey placed 4th just 2-seconds ahead of Imogen King in 5th and then Montana Edghill came home 7th. They take a lead of 80-pts to the final match.

Charlotte Underwood led the under13 girls home around their 3km course closing in 6th with Lily-Mae Smith 9th, Jodie Brogden 11th and Chloe Munro 14th. They are in 2nd place behind Chiltern in the race for the overall team prize.The under 13 boys raced the same distance and Aidan Murphy was first back for MK (his 3rd out of 4), finishing 7th overall. Harry Legg closed in 18th, Seb Henry 21st and Harry Rose 23rd but were back in 4th in the team event.

There was an encouraging 11 ladies racing over 5km in the combined under 17/20 age group and good to see Emma Mears getting back to form as she finished in 2nd place. Enya Deysel put in her best race this season finishing 8th, ahead of Georgia Flawn-Thomas, 10th and Sophie Botham 11th but were narrowly beaten by Bedford in the team event.

Natasha Baker splashing through in the ladies race

Natasha Baker splashing through in the ladies race

Finally there were just three under 11 boys in their 2km race. After an enthusiastic start Sam Oldroyd held on for first counter, 24th chased home by Toby Sapwell (36th) and Max Holland (47th) from the 72 strong field.