News Article

5th December 2016

The English Schools' Athletics Association Cross Country National Finals were held on Saturday 3rd December 2016 in Formby.

We travelled pretty much the length of England on Friday afternoon for the ESAA cross-country final. Making the final is impressive enough but we were quietly confident of a good performance.

The competition is for under 14 age groups. The local rounds of this competition started in October, with over 1660 teams from over 570 schools throughout England competing against other local schools in their county. The leading teams from the competitions held in each county then competed in one of 8 regional finals in the first weeks of November. The national final pits the leading 3 teams in each age group in each region against each other.

The standard of this final was extremely high, the first placed runner was effectively running a 17 minute parkrun time, which is rapid!

Fin was as impressive as ever in an outstanding 4th place (though he was disappointed, which explains why he performs at the level he does!), Ollie H was just 20 seconds behind in 13th. Ethan pulled out all the stops to come 48th, followed by Ollie C, Freddie and Max; all close behind. Our great strength at Yardley Court is bunching high up the field and this was the case again. All six boys, running those times, would have been top ten in this week’s Tonbridge parkrun! We finished with 126 points and placed joint 4th out of the 24 of best running schools in the country. If you look at the scores below you will see that the top 8 schools were separated by just 31 points. We were only 13 points off top spot and we were super proud of all six boys.

Eddie Jones said last week that his England squad were beginning to drive their own performance from within by setting internal goals. Our boys are so driven to succeed and want to do well for each other in the same way. It is this, coupled with natural talent that makes them so successful. I have learnt a lot from them about the approach needed to make a highly successful team, whatever the sport.   
1 Woodbridge School, Woodbridge, Suffolk 113
2 Calday Grange Grammar School, Wirral, Merseyside 114
3 Northampton School for Boys, Northampton, Northamptonshire 121
4 Tomlinscote School and Sixth Form College, Camberley, Surrey 126
   Yardley Court, Tonbridge, Kent 126
6 Bourne Grammar School, Bourne, Lincolnshire 128
7 Ermysted's Grammar School, Skipton, North Yorkshire 141
8 Bishop Wordsworth's Grammar School, Salisbury, Wiltshire 144


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