CITY of Salisbury’s newest rising star at cross country running, Bea Wood, moved to a completely different level at the English Schools Cup Finals by beating the entire field in her junior age group to become national title holder.
Competing at Formby on Merseyside for South Wilts Grammar School against girls from all over the country, the 13 year-old took the 2,000m race by storm, holding off her nearest rival to win a closely contested final by just four seconds.
This is the latest in a growing list of remarkable performances by the Salisbury prospect and one which will be noticed around the sport.
The youngster only took it up the sport a year ago and, with the help of club coaching, discovered that she has real talent for middle distance running.
In the same race, Rose Warren finished a good 53rd, contributing to the school’s 11th place overall.
In the junior boys’ finals, Oliver Phillips did very well for 26th and he was followed by Lucas Bailey 43rd and Theo Cochrane 92nd to earn Bishop Wordsworth’s a well-earned tenth overall.
Meanwhile, at Popham near Basingstoke in the Hampshire League cross country series, several City of Salisbury athletes improved their previous finishing positions.
Nile Battey in the under 15s took a fine 20th spot, as did Alex Mundell in the senior ladies’ race where she was followed by Charlotte Ingram 54th, Aly Sloane 92nd and Tasha Mundell 99th.
Ellen Tilley was 54th in the under 15 girls, while in the under 13s Alice Oliffe-Lee was 32nd and Ellena Bessey 50th.
For the senior men, Ed O’Gorman again ran strongly to take a creditable 49th place, followed by Andy Holme 88th, Reece Ingram 91st, Kevin Tilley 109th, Mark Glanville 114th and Richard Larcombe 165th.
Report by John Ruskin