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Thames Valley Cross Country – Handy Cross & Crowthorne

With the festive break behind us its all action in the XC world as the Thames Valley Cross Country League charges at full speed towards February with races every weekend for the next four weeks. Before we pull on our trail shoes let’s pause for breath and do a quick recap of the last two rounds…….

Handy Cross Runners hosted Round 2 at Bradenham Woods near High Wycombe on the hilliest circuit of the series. Blue skies and thawing ground greeted the 377 runners for a rollercoaster of a trip around the 8.5km course with 225m climbing.


24 Sandhurst Joggers took to the start line with fantastic performances all round on the demanding ‘proper’ cross country course. The SJ Women took top honours in the Women’s league and helped the club to joint 1st overall. Graham was first home overall after shaking off his nearest rival on the final steep ascent to round out a great day of results for the club.


Scorers this round:

Women: Jenny, Helen A, Nikki, Kathryn

Men: Graham, Mark, Craig, Richard, Brendan,  Dave A


Although the day provided many more highlights with a huge array of sandwiches and cakes laid on by the host club and the traditional adjournment to the pub.



Two weeks later we were back in more familiar surroundings as Reading Road Runners hosted Round 3 of the league on an almost identical course to the Woodland 5 events in Crowthorne Woods. The familiar venue meant the standard and numbers were even higher with 473 jostling on the narrow startline and the club were well represented with 38 runners and many supporters lining the course.

The open fireroads and long smooth downhills provided very close and fast racing but it was the near vertical climb near the end of the lap which was to decide many finishing positions. This round saw another strong performance from the SJ Women’s team taking second spot in the Women’s league. Graham had to yield this time around to the host club’s Rob Corney who is enjoying a rich vein of form but still led the Men’s team to 5th in the league placing the club 2nd overall on the day.


Scorers this round:

Women: Jenny, Helen A, Nikki, Kathryn

Men: Graham, Mark, Craig, Brendan,  Dave B, Richard

Action picks up again on Sunday 15th January when Bracknell Forest Runners host Round 4 of the league at Lightwater Country Park. The race starts at 11am so allow time park and register.

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