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Dyfed Schools Athletes turnout at Welsh Inter-Schools Ysgol Bro Myrddin secure team double! PDF Print E-mail
Written by Nathan Jones   
Saturday, 17 November 2018 17:03


It was a "Super Saturday" today with a triple-header of athletics events across Mid and South Wales. Along with the Welsh Athletics Clubs Conference in Cardiff & British Masters Cross Country International at Singleton Park in Swansea, young pupils also represented their schools at our featured event from Penlan Arena/Brecon Leisure Centre here:

Saturday 17th November was a big day as far as school endurance runners were concerned, as all roads from the Eight Welsh Districts - Afan Nedd Tawe, Cardiff & Vale, Dyfed, Eryri, Glamorgan Valleys, North East Wales, Powys and South East Wales led to the Penlan Arena fields in Brecon. On a bright but chilly afternoon, the 42nd edition of the Welsh Inter-Schools Cross Country Championships made a return in its usual Mid-November slot.

Roedd Dydd Sadwrn 17eg o Dachwedd yn ddiwrnod mawr yng nghalendr traws gwlad Ysgolion Cymru. Daeth yr athletwyr gorau o'r wyth rhanbarth - Afan Nedd Tawe, Caerdydd a'r Fro, Dyfed, Eryri, Cymoedd Morgannwg, Gogledd Ddwyrain Cymru, Powys a De Ddwyrain Cymru at ei gilydd i Gaeau Penlan yn Aberhonddu. Ar brynhawn braf ond digon oer, gwnaeth Pencampwriaeth Traws Gwlad Ysgolion Cymru dychwelyd i'w dyddiad arferol yng nghanol mis Tachwedd.


Welsh Schools Athletics Association launched their cross country programme as the fixture list presented its first serious test of the winter with this annual Inter-Schools event.

Having been open to every school to attend, nearly 90 different schools and colleges were represented in this annual event, which again incorporated the Welsh Colleges Championships. It was also pleasing to see a larger turnout in particular, the seniors than 12 months ago, with the six races attracting a total of 366 participants.

Medals were presented to the individual top 3 podium finishers & winning teams which consisted of four school athletes in a scoring team.

The Inter-Schools Championships has been one of the selection races over many years for the London Mini Marathon, however with a new selection criteria in place for 2018, it was more of a team event in Mid Wales as schools battled to come out on top in their respective age categories. The event over previous years has seen excellent success for the club's year 5 and 6 primary school children in the lead up to the main races.

The event took place over a brand new course in 2018, due to the construction work that continues on the new Brecon High school on parts of the old route outside the Leisure Centre. This meant that all the races were on the field beyond the athletics track and next to the astro turf. It used the far end field as the senior athletes used to run in Gwent League fixtures.

A later start than usual to the race programme gave the pupils extra time to prepare their race tactics and to walk around the course route.


The course in Brecon offered a different challenge to those experienced at the John H Collins Gwent Cross Country League match at Pembrey Country Park just 7 days earlier, where many club runners had competed the Saturday before. Rain earlier in the week leading up to competition day gave way to a bright but cold afternoon with the underfoot conditions not too bad either. It provided a tough course as mentioned by the athletes themselves, with a few sharp twist and turns along the way.

First to set off at 1.15pm were the Under 13 Girls and Under 13 Boys, with the opening races running a distance of 2,880m. Following them were the Under 15 Boys and Girls in races three and four. The girls' distance totalled 3,670m whilst the boys completed 4,460m consisting of two large laps. Concluding the event were the Senior Boys and Senior Girls with those in action in school years 11 to 14, running 4,460m and 5,770m respectively.

Individual winners on the day were: Maddie Griffiths (Welshpool High); Leo Stark (Bassaleg); Moli Lyons (Y Dderwen); Jacob Reynolds (Cwm Rhymni - Y Gwyndy); Aimee Callow (Ysgol Glantaf) and Ben Thomas (Y Strade)

Winning teams in each of the six age groups at Brecon came from five different schools. They were Cowbridge, Bro Myrddin, Bro Morgannwg, Ysgol Glantaf and Cardiff High.




13:15 Under 13 Girls / Merched O Dan 13 (year 7 & 8)

Ffion Ouseley (Y Preseli) finished in sixth position just ahead of Faye Jones (Bro Pedr) who led her scoring team in 12th. Her school teammate Jasmine Jones (Bro Pedr) was 15th followed by the Harriers duo of Amy Greatrick (QE High) and Erin Morgan (Bro Myrddin) in 17th and 19th respectively. Second scorer for the Pembrokeshire area was Lucy Wintle (Y Preseli) who came 25th whilst Seren Davies (Bro Teifi) was the latest finisher in 43rd overall. Henry Richard's Alaw Jameswas 46th before the Bro Pedr duo of Violett Caulkett and Molly Burgess ensured that they finished a team. Maddie Caulkett was Bro Pedr's fifth scorer in the opening race.

Ysgol Bro Pedr's scoring team were sixth out of 11, scoring 186pts.


13:30 Under 13 Boys / Bechgyn O Dan 13 (year 7 & 8)

It was the first of two team victories for Ysgol Bro Myrddin, Carmarthen who clinched it by 24 points with a total of 62pts.

It was Iwan Thomas (Y Strade) who was the first of the Dyfed boys to cross the finish line in the top five. Only a few seconds behind was Jack Thomas (Queen Elizabeth) in a top ten placing of seventh. Then, came the Bro Myrddin boys who claimed team glory thanks to Zach Elvy in 11th, Ifan Bowen 15th, Rogan Cox 17th and Steffan Davies completed the four scorers in 19th position. Also from the local club was Jake Lynock (Bro Dinefwr) who was 21st.]

Meanwhile, Ysgol Greenhill's Fletcher Broadhurst was the sole representative in 28th place followed by fellow Pembrokeshire man, Finley Bruce (Y Preseli) 31st just ahead of Wil Hockenhull (Henry Richard) 35th. Bro Myrddin's fifth runner in a good turnout was Brynmor Peters in 42nd. Thomas' schoolmate Iwan Wilson from the Llanelli club battled to the end in 49th.


13:50 Under 15 Girls / Merched O Dan 15 (year 9 & 10)

Jessica Morris was the first pupil to run under the newly-named school of Ysgol Harri Tudur and finished in the top 20 in sixteenth. Just a few seconds behind her wasTanwen Moon (Maes Y Gwendraeth) and was followed across the line by Amy Tucker (St John Lloyd) who came in 27th. The other two pupils involved in the U15G was Amber McIsaac (QE High) and Fraya Thapa (Penweddig) who crossed closely in 31st and 34th.



14:10 Under 15 Boys / Bechgyn O Dan 15 (year 9 & 10)

More success was to come shortly after for the Bro Myrddin boys, who followed up U13 victory with the Under 15 Boys team gold medals too to make it two wins.

In a high quality race full of talented young stars which saw the lead change hands at a number of times, Bro Myrddin's trio Dafydd Jones, Liam Edwards and Frank Morgan made it three in the first four with some fantastic displays. Edwards and Morgan even had enough energy left in the tank for a sprint finish in the final 100m! A sixth place for Iori Humphreys (Ysgol Harri Tudur) confirmed four finishers in the top ten for the West Wales boys in a very strong age group for this year!

The Pembrokeshire duo were next in, Cian Harries (Haverfordwest High) and Oliver George (Y Preseli) in 13th and 14th. Ioan Cressey-Rodgers (Bro Myrddin) in 16th was the schools' fourth and all-important scorer to ensure a comfortable victory with a great tally of 25pts. Bro Dinefwr's Scott Price was the seventh athlete from the district to cross in 23rd.

Elsewhere, Jac Hockenhull (Henry Richard), Rhys Llewellyn (Haverfordwest High), Jack Caulkett (Bro Pedr) and Jack Bruce (Y Preseli) were closely together recording positions of 36th, 41st, 43rd and 45th.


14:35 Senior Girls / Merched Hyn (year 11-14)

There was only the one competitor from Dyfed in the penultimate race, and that was Pembrokeshire Colleges' Eliza Martin. She placed 17th.


15:00 Senior Boys / Bechgyn Hyn (year 11-14)

The final race of the day, Senior Boys was expected to be a tight and contested race, and that's what we exactly got! There were some great early tactics with a group of around eight in the leading pack heading into the latter stages of the large lap.

However, Ben Thomas' experience at this level told as he followed up 2016 and last year's victory at the same venue to repeat his success for the third year in succession in Brecon. Thomas clocked 18:57 with a good battle between James and Reynolds for the silver.

In other results elsewhere, Callum Campion (Coleg Sir Gar) and Rhys Davies (Pembrokeshire College) came down the finishing straight together for 16th and 17th. Iwan Dugmore (Y Preseli) was the next to finish the race in 27th ahead of the Bro Pedr duo of Lewis Jones and Dafydd Lloyd in 32nd and 34th.


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Well done to everyone who took part on Saturday. Da iawn i bawb wnaeth cymryd rhan Ddydd Sadwrn. In addition, many thanks to all the officials and volunteers who worked hard during the day in front of and behind the scenes.

It's now onto the Welsh Inter-Regional Championships which will be held before the Christmas break over at a new venue in Llandrindod on Saturday 8th December.