Henry beats the best in the nation


Cirencester Athletics and Triathlon Club 8 March 2020

Henry Sheffield won again, this time by beating the pick of the nation in the Under 13 Boys at the Inter-counties Cross Country Championships at Loughborough. Henry, determined to put last year’s tumble behind him, had successfully fought his way to the front by the first bend. He then consolidated his lead on an extremely muddy uphill section but found enough in his legs to stretch the pack yet more on the descent, to finish a magnificent 13 seconds ahead of the rest. Finally, Henry, who described the muddy conditions as so tough it felt more like a 10k race, found himself on the podium in Wellies. Isobel Watt was also there, like Henry proud to be representing both the county and the club. She triumphed over pre race nerves and fought her way from the centre of the pack to finish 88th (well within her target of top 100) and 1st for Gloucestershire in a nationally top class field of 306. All being well, Isobel and Henry will both be running again next weekend in the English Schools Cross Country Championships in Liverpool. Tom Hunton ran as a Senior but, although qualifying, other demands led to James Thomas and Bill Legatte declining their places.




Inter-Counties Championships, Loughborough, 3km cross country

U13 Girls 1 Zoe Gilbody (Shropshire) 13.36 88 Isobel Watt (Gloucestershire / Cirencester AC) 15.44 306 finished.

U13 Boys 1 Henry Sheffield (Gloucestershire / Cirencester AC) 13.12 293 finished.









Almost too late for last week’s report was the news that Chris Illman retained his winning form when completing 17.5 miles between Cape Cornwall and St Ives in just under 3 hours. In common with so many other trail races, the wind, driving rain and mud made this year’s Cousin Jack Classic particularly hard but the endless ups and downs of the coastal path are always tough. Chris who is one of the most successful of our club runners has not been seen by most for sometime, but is preparing for “a couple more ultras” and hopes to continue road running and to reappear at club training if and when work allows.

Cousin Jack Classic, Cape Cornwall to St Ives, 17.5 miles trail

1 Chris Illman (Cirencester AC) 2.59.09 164 finished.


Mark Sysum was flying again, this time completing the hilly Minchinhampton 10km in 39.16 to finish in 3rd place. Jos Randall continues to improve and finished 88th in 54.16. Rachel Barrow followed in 1.00, Barbara Thomas in 1.01 and Paul Barrow in 1.16.

Minchinhampton 10km, road

1 Matt Wells (Team Bath AC) 36.19 (chip 36.18) 3 Mark Sysum (Cirencester AC) 39.16 (39.14) 88 Jocelyn Randall 54.16 (54.02) 153 Rachel Barrow 1.00.11 (59.46) 159 Barbara Thomas 1.01.10 (1.00.51) 251 Paul Barrow 1.16.28 (1.15.53) 271 finished.


Robbie Brown, Simon Campbell and Richard Hurdle went down to Devon for the well known and aptly named Grizzly which adds shingle beach to the usual off road delights of muddy scrambles and precipitous slopes. Robbie finished the very technical 20 miles in an impressive time of 3.05 with Simon only two minutes behind him and Richard some 7 minutes behind that.

The Grizzly, Seaton, Devon, 20 miles multi-terrain

1 Wayne Loveridge (Chard Road Runners) 2.26.22 79 Robbie Brown (Cirencester AC) 3.05.10 87 Simon Campbell 3.07.05 113 Richard Hurdle 3.14.40 1385 finished parkruns, 5km trail

The parkrun at Cirencester was cancelled for the second week running sending some to swell the numbers at Swindon and Tetbury and giving others another week off. Holly Willis ran sub 20 to finish 1stlady and 15th overall in 19.55 at Swindon Lydiard where Neil Morrissey ran 22.27, Alan McAdam 24.43, Rachel McAdam 26.47 and Barbara Thomas 28.05. One second short of his PB of 17.04 gave Ollie Campbell (JM15-17) 2nd place at Tetbury where he was joined by Brecht Grieten (19.32) and Nea Sneddon Jenkins whose 21.30 was 3 seconds slower than her last week’s PB. Jos Randall (the day before running the Minch 10k) and Sam Timms followed. Jacob McAdam has run sub 18 before but will be pleased with 17.44 which brought him in 8th at Victoria Docks. Finally Louise Abbott ran in Pembrokeshire and Rupert Chesmore and Liza Darroch were on grandchild escort duty at Gloucester City.

Cirencester AC finishers: Swindon, Lydiard: 15 Holly Willis 19.55 – 1st lady, 61 Neil Morrissey 22.27, 140 Alan McAdam 24.43, 200 Rachel McAdam 26.47, 239 Barbara Thomas 28.05, 613 finished. Tetbury: 2 Ollie Campbell (J) 17.05, 6 Brecht Grieten 19.32, 14 Nea Sneddon-Jenkins 21.30, 45 Jocelyn Randall 26.08, 84 Samantha Timms 29.33, 177 finished. Gloucester City: 292 Rupert Chesmore 41.57, 311 Liza Darroch 48.20, 345 finished. Colby, Pembrokeshire: 77 Louise Abbott 33.02, 110 finished. Victoria Dock, London: 8 Jacob McAdam 17.44, 190 finished.

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