U15 teams win 1st NWLL league titles as D&T dominate final match

Over the past 20 years teams from Dacorum & Tring AC have regularly participated in the NW London YA XC League (NWLL), which consists of five matches throughout the winter months. The overall League positions are determined by the aggregate scores from 5 races, whilst individual positions are decided by the points gained from each runner’s best 4 races. In each of four age groups, boys and girls, the winning team receives a trophy, and the top 6 individuals overall are awarded medals.

More photos and final results will be published as we receive final confirmations from the race organisers

In the past two years Olivia Edwards and Stella Whitlum have both won the individual title in their age group, but until this season the club has never won a team title. Yesterday, 22 girls and 8 boys contested the final match held at Wormwood Scrubs expecting to win the Under 15 Boys trophy for the first time, but also looking for individual and team success in the other age groups.

Stella won the U13 girls series title in 2018 and took 2nd in the U15 category this year, her first year in the two-year age group

Once again the Under 15 Boys dominated the opposition, with Joe Chamberlain gaining a second consecutive win, followed in by Sam Burnell (4th), Tom O’Reilly (7th), Jack Raine (9th) and Thomas Durrant (top 20).

(Main photo, above, shows Joe, Sam, Tom and Jack at the start of the U15 boys race)

Having won all five matches, the Under 15 Boys were clear winners of the team trophy, and in the individual standings placed five runners in the top six: 1st Joe Chamberlain; 3rd Sam Burnell; 4th Jack Raine; 5th Tom O’Reilly; 6th Jamie Bailey.

Thomas, Joe, Jack, Sam and Tom prepare to do battle in the U15 boys race

Going into this match the Under 15 Girls were placed 2nd overall, so needed to score a convincing victory to have any chance of winning the team title.  Magnificent runs from Stella Whitlum (3rd), Grace Hucknall (7th) and Jemima Byers (9th) secured victory for the club, and they were followed in by Jessica Hill (16th), Emma Cresswell (17th), Lauren Collis (19th), Olivia Hill (22nd), Katie Mitchell (24th), and Amber Penaliggon (25th).

Stella, Grace, Amber, Jessica, Katie, Lauren, Olivia, Jemima and Emma won the U15 girls team title

There was then a tense wait whilst the organisers recounted the total scores several times, until finally the Under 15 Girls were declared the winners  – by one point – and as an added bonus Stella Whitlum placed 2nd in the individual standings.

Indira Patel was a clear winner of the Under 17 Womens race, to make it four victories in four races, backed up by Amy Cassidy (5th) and Jessica Hoar (7th) to ensure a team victory on the day, and a second place in the overall team standings.  Indira won the individual title, whilst Amy and Jessica finished 4th and 6th respectively in the individual standings.

Indira, Amy and Jessica celebrate their outstanding results in the series

The Under 13 Girls finished in the top three on the day, led home by Isabelle Jelfs (8th) supported by india Frost (19th), Amy Lane (29th), Beth Moody (32nd), Poppy Webster (36th), Nancie Bateson (37th), and Evie Light (40th). The team finished a very creditable 3rd in the overall standings, whilst Isabelle also placed 3rd in the individual standings. 

Alexia Bede had her best run of the season to finish 6th in the Under 11 Girls race, followed in by Effie Walsh (33rd). 

In the Under 13 Boys race Tim Fryer had an excellent run to finish in the top-10, and was supported by George Hawkins, and Rory Bartlett-Tisdall.  Tim’s consistently good performances in the league placed him 5th overall in the individual standings.

Tim, Rory and George ran well in the U13 boys race

In other club news, five Middle Distance Squad members ran in the Berkhamsted 5 mile race, testing themselves over the scenic but hilly course.

Finishing 4th overall was Angus Saunders in an impressive time of 29.29. Just under three minutes behind was Thomas Ashton, who finished 8th overall and 2nd junior male in a time of 32.18, while Jemima Byers, who ran in the NWLL match less than 24 hours before, finished 17th overall, 3rd female and 1st junior female in a time of 35.09.

Indie Frost, who also ran in the NWLL match, finished 25th overall in 36.44, fast enough for 2nd junior female. Less than a minute behind Indie was Isaac North, who celebrated his 11th birthday with a superb time of 37.40, giving him 6th place in the junior male category.

Former Middle Distance Squad member Sarah Grover finished 5th overall and 1st female in the 5-mile race in a superb time of 31.13.

Thanks to parent photographers Vivien Whitlum, Andrea Bartlett, Steve Chamberlain and Nick O’Reilly for the fantastic photos. Click on each photo to enlarge.. Click on each photo in the gallery below to enlarge.

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About Catherine Davies

Catherine has been an active member of Dacorum & Tring AC Road Runners since 2007, and her three children have all passed through Mike Dunphy's Middle Distance squad.