XC joy for York

SATURDAY 3 FEBRUARY witnessed 2018’s largest university running competition. Over two thousand athletes competed at Uxbridge on the outskirts of London to compete in the annual BUCS Cross Country Championships.

York rose to the challenge with great performances from all teams. York ladies finished 18th from 60 teams, a massive improvement on last year in which they finished in a comparatively unimpressive 74th position. Rebecca Ward led home York’s women finishing 42nd out of 704 finishers; next home was Jessica Troy in 109th place followed by Olivia Mann (151st), captain Claire Jones (223rd), Cara Gibbons (230th), Seren Hughes (260th), Emily Legg (287th), Alice Steele (395th), Poppi Dickens (484th) and Rachel Ayrton (496th).

York’s men also improved on last year’s performances. The men’s long race witnessed York’s men come 27th out of 54 teams. First home was Sean Flanagan in 113th, followed by George Cook (139th), Toby Fletcher (148th), Jack Eggington (173rd), Harry Topham (191st) and Timothy Bagguley (242nd).

The men’s short race witnessed athletic prowess from Scott Taylor. Recovering from a drunken incident involving several gates earlier in the week, Taylor ran a fantastic race to lead the men home in 169th place. He was followed by George Mallinson (192nd), Daniel Figg (199th), Jelle Vinkwnoog (228th) and Noah Howlett (304th). Jacob Phillips was the last scorer in 320th.

When asked for their thoughts on the team’s results, men’s captain Lewis Bellwood stated: “we had a very successful day, everyone gave it their all and managed to look like they were having fun while doing it.”

Women’s captain Claire Jones stated: “Despite the mud, rain, cold and a surprise water feature, everyone had fantastic runs and a brilliant day out! Highlight of the trip had to be the all you can eat breakfast buffet.”