On Saturday 3rd October we had 56 excited children taking part in the Jarrow and Hebburn AC Minors Cross Country Competition at Bedeswell Park. This was the biggest number of children we have ever had involved in a single event! It was also the largest squad involved on the day from either Schools or North East Running Clubs. All of our children completed their events, while they achieved some notable individual and team successes.
Firstly, I really appreciated how many families had thoughtfully re-arranged their usual Saturday mornings, to allow their children to represent our school. During the event, the brilliant spirit of our school community was evident in how children and families clapped enthusiastically, and cheered loudly for everyone in St. Bede’s vests. The support for our children whether they finished first or last was equally loud, as they approached the finish line. There was also generous applause for athletes from other clubs or schools.
In the Year 3 Girls race (3/4 mile) St. Bede’s Darcey Tullis (4:59) struck Gold after a determined run (also 4th in the Y4 race!), Alex Connor ran a well-paced race for Silver (5:20), while Heidi Clark and Rose Henson tied for Bronze in (5:52).
In the Y3 Boys race (1 mile) Hayden Steven (6:41) strode majestically around the course to be the fastest Y3 boy, with Lucas Britton (6:52) claimed Silver and Felix Severs (6:53) Bronze. The Y3 children will get the opportunity to run the same course and distance next year as Year 4’s. I’m sure they will be better for experiencing the route, and performing in front of a large crowd.
The Year 4 girls race (3/4 mile) was dominated by the St. Bede’s Y4 girls. Maddison Hart ran a rapid race (4:31) to storm to Gold, closely followed by the impressive Ava Elliot gaining Silver (4:43), while Cordilia Odile claimed Bronze (4:58). In the Year 4 boys race (1 mile) Joseph Wood (6:14) ran fantastically, but had to settle for Silver after finishing a few seconds behind the winner. Our next boy home was Leroy Velasco- Luckham (6:37) finishing in a creditable 7th.
The Year 5 girls race (1 mile) saw our girls just finish agonisingly outside the medals, after some very strong performances. The increasingly determined Megan Tooley finished 4th (7:18), Grace Knowles 5th (7:26), Francesca Williams 6th (7:28), Emily Sanders 7th (7:56) were our highest finishers, in a particularly strong field.
Meanwhile, in the Y5 boys (1 ¼ mile) Schools’ race Jake Waters ( 6:50) was in imperious form winning Gold ( 2nd overall, beating nearly all of the Harriers!), with Joshua Camm ( 7:32) winning a brilliant Silver medal, after a great sprint finish! Jude Connor 4th (7:56), Ben More ( 8:11) 7th and Nick Campbell 9th ( 8:20) also ran particularly fast races and new personal bests.
The Year 6 girls (1 ¼ mile) race saw us continue our successes in the school’s races. Lily Jary (7:48) was amongst the medals again with a gritty Silver, while Ella Wood ( 8:08) claimed a brilliant Bronze, very well deserved too, after training so hard in recent weeks. Elizabeth Kilminster was our next girl to complete the course in 6th place, always a consistently high performer.
The Year 6 boys (1 ½ mile) was the final race of the day, and naturally the longest. William McDougall ran a personal best (10:46) to earn a Silver medal, closely followed by Alastair Moffitt (11:25) who finished a superb fourth.
Amazingly, we were within two points of winning the whole team event for the six races, showing how strong everyone performed collectively. This represented a great performance in our second appearance at the event, especially against a winning school that contains 120 more Juniors.
This was a really uplifting morning and I was especially proud of all of the children taking part. The biggest success of the day was the vast number of children involved from St. Bede’s – a whopping 56! The support for each other was phenomenal, which in turn helped to inspire great performances and made sure everyone enjoyed the event.
Finally, my abiding memory from the day, were the lines of St. Bede’s families cheering for all of the runners as they reached the finish line, in almost Great North Run fashion, such was the great spirit of the day.
Well done everyone and thank you!
Sporting regards, Mr. McVittie