Dulwich Runners preserve Surrey Cross Country League status
The red and blue of Dulwich Runners completed the fourth and final round of the Start Fitness Surrey Cross Country League on Saturday. The ladies team started the round second bottom in Division 1 with three to be relegated. A series of high scoring runs was essential at Richmond Park to make up ground on other teams and preserve top division status.
Clare Elms set the tone for a strong team performance with a stellar display to place 11th overall and first in her V50 age group. Helen Lister then followed up with a 45th place finish, translating her marathon training form to the muddy trails of Richmond Park.
Becca Schulleri, Tess Bright and Ola Balme then finished in quick succession to help the team to a 10th place finish on the day. There then followed a tense period where the officials did the maths before revealing that Dulwich had overturned a 99 point deficit to relegate both Stragglers and Ful-on-Tri - the latter, a club that had finished 5th last season.
In the overall championships Ros Tabor secured second place in the V60 category, and the B team placed 7th out of the 15 teams.
Meanwhile down at the now customary Lloyd Park mud fest...
the men’s team started the final round of Division 2 in mid table looking for strong performances to end the main league season on a high.
A hardy group of supporters braved the conditions for some impressive action from all the teams and surprisingly few tumbles on the slippery slopes of Croydon. Five Dulwich Runners comprised the top 30, with Tim Bowen, Steve Davies, Buzz Shephard, Greg Hills and Oscar Hussey leading the way.
The A team scorers were then made up of Tom South, Shane O'Neill, Ed Harper, Ian Lilley and Grant Kennedy.
An overall 4th performance on the day was not enough to move Dulwich up from 5th place but the team finished closer to 3rd than 6th in the final championship reckoning.
In the overall individual championships, Steve Davies placed 3rd in the V40, Steve Smythe 5th in the V50 and a clean sweep of the podium in the V60 category saw Hugh Balfour beat Mike Mann and Graham Laylee to second place overall.
Conditions got so bad at the end that some runners were asked to sit in the tent to stop it flying away into New Addington...