Corporate Challenge Race 2

Another fine evening greeted another bumper number of runners in the second of this year’s Corporate Challenge Road Races resulting in some fine competitive racing

and many new personal best performances from juniors and seniors alike. After the juniors had done battle in the early part of the evening it was probably in the senior “A” race where there was the most excitement. With Dan Bailey making a dash for the lead from the start, a group of half a dozen settled into a steady pace some 10 seconds down after the first of the four laps. By halfway the leader had been caught and it was James Baker who was forcing the pace with last time runner-up James Ellis, Worthing’s Mark Burchett and Chichester’s top U20 Harry Leleu breathing down his neck. The order was the same until the final corner into North Street where Harry summoned all his strength to pip Mark by a second with James in third and James relegated to fourth for the second time in a row but with just 5 seconds separating the quartet. This was a special moment for the Seaford College 6th former having competed in the Corporate Challenge series as a junior and senior over the past nine years having started running for his Downview Primary team in year 5.

Just outside the top 50 overall it was Fay Cripps who was a convincing winner of the women’s race with a 40 second gap to Annabel Pink with Corin Bearpark in third. Teamwise it was Team iRun who again just got the better of last year’s winners Dstl Portsdown West while Worthing Hares posted a nippy combined time of 57.57 to have over two minutes to spare over Chichester Casuals. In the women’s rankings it is Midhurst Rother Staff who are out in front with again the Dstl squad in 2nd while CWTC Ladies were just too strong for Havant Angels.

Junior Races

As usual the evening started with the rush of the Primary Junior races with the top three in the combined years 5 and 6 races filling the same positions as in race 1 with Oliver Sanderson once again coming out on top although all the top ten dramatically improved their times from two weeks previously. In the team results it was Central who leapfrogged Jessie Younghusband although there was less than a minute covering the top six teams which North Mundham also deserving praise for having two teams with an aggregate of under 16 minutes. In the primary girls race it was Poppy Chandler of Oakwood who crossed the line just one second ahead of Nina Moranne who nevertheless led her Jessie Younghusband team to a seven seconds win.

In the Secondary schools races the top four in the girls’ race all had the honour of leading their individual school years. Maisie Grice from Cams Hill in year 10 was seven seconds in front of Olivia Wiseman from Bishop Luffa in year 8 and led her school to team wins in both year 8 and the combined years 9 and 10 race. Anya Pigden from Churchers was next to lead the year 9 girls’ home with another Cams Hill pupil, Saffron Moore, leading the year 7 rankings, although it was Midhurst Rother who took the team win with good packing from Lily De Lacy, Ella Howard and Ella-Jane Creasy.

In the boys race there was another dominant display from Ben Collins from Chichester High School who won the year 9 & 10 race and led his team of Alex Halfacree and Benedict Robinson to a convincing win over Bishop Luffa led home by Luke Campbell. Brodie Keates from Felpham improved to lead the individual year 10 rankings. In the year 8 race there was fine running from the top three who all broke the coveted 7 minute barrier with Worthing’s Ethan Fincham posting one of the fastest ever times at 6.34 for the three laps. In the year 7 race the top three finishers had all performed well as year 6 runners in the Primary schools races in 2014 with James Gardam winning in 7.09 with Stanley Kingshott and Liam Dunne finishing neck and neck in second and third respectively with James’s Bishop Luffa squad winning both the years 7 and 8 team races.

All eyes will be on the final race next Wednesday 25th March where there will be all to play for both individual and for team prizes with the best two times taken into account over the three evenings.