In-form Harriers head for a Lloyd Park cross-country showdown

Making a splash: Croydon Harrier Penny Oliver on her way to victory in her Surrey Cross-country League race at Chobham Common

Cross-country races are renowned for going ahead whatever the weather, and last weekend while footballers and race horses were taking time off due to the frozen conditions, Croydon Harriers splashed their way around sodden courses with great success.

At Chobham Common, Penny Oliver led more than 200 women home, while Katherina Warren, in 45th place overall, won the junior women’s age group.

The men’s Surrey League has long been regarded as one of the toughest in the country, and in the men’s five-mile race held at Beckenham Place Park (yeah, not actually in Surrey…), newly-crowned county champion Dom Nolan maintained his fine recent form by placing second, while his Croydon team mate, James Hancock, was 11th. Douglas Aikman placed third in the under-20s age group.

With one race to go, Aikman leads the overall season’s standings for junior men, by just two points – equivalent to two finishing places – while Hancock lies in second place in the senior rankings, needing to beat Hercules Wimbledon’s Fred Slemeck by seven places in the final race of the league season.

Most of the focus of the Surrey League is on the 10-to-score team races.

Sprint double: Farrell Fabusiwa with one of his two SEAA gold medals

The finale of this season’s Surrey Cross-country League is to be held at Lloyd Park on Saturday, March 5, when Croydon Harriers, currently ninth of the nine teams in Division One, will be in a tussle with South London Harriers to avoid relegation.

Croydon Harriers won six medals at last weekend’s South of England Indoor Championships at Lee Valley, where Farrell Fabusiwa did the under-15s sprint double, the 60 and 200metres, the latter with a championship best performance 22.82sec.

There was a one-two by Caiselle Murray and Saray Destiny Crosdale in the under-13s girls’ 60metres.

Tochi Davids in the under-15 girls’ 200metres and Kalvyn Mills in the under-13 boys’ 60metres also both won medals.

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