An exciting third and final cross country meet for the season took place under heavy clouds on Friday (5 February 2016) on the grueling, hilly course at Lomagundi College outside of Chinhoyi.
Two new course records highlighted the afternoon. Andie Kuipers of Peterhouse Girls continued her unbeaten streak by breaking Hellenic Academy’s Gabrielle de Chassart’s 2013 record of 17:10.9 winning the U15 4.1 km girls’ race in a time of 17:04.6. In the U17 boys race, Alfred Chawonza of St George’s College finished the 6.3km course in 23:11.0 bettering Gedion Benade’s previous course set two years ago by 33 seconds.
Outside of Chawonza’s impressive run, Prince Edward continued to dominate all of the boys’ races, winning first, second and third in both the U15 and U19 races and second and third in the U17. Tinashe Gambe finished the challenging Open 7.2km course in 25:39, while Tanaka Ndabambi grabbed his third consecutive cross country victory in the km U15 category in 15:19.
The girls races were much more evenly distributed, with six schools featuring runners who finished in the top three. In addition to Kuiper’s clear U15 victory, Gateway’s Tinerudo Mawoyo continued her U17 winning streak this season with a 18:04.2 win, a race which overall was won by Arundel who had 2nd, 4th and 5th place winners. De Chassart of Hellenic was gunning for the course record in the Open Girls Category, but missed it by three seconds with a 17:07.7 finish, the fastest time of the day for the girls’ 4.1km course. We probably would have seen de Chassart beating records and winning more victories this cross country season except that this was the only meet in which Hellenic participated.
Prince Edward were the clear victors in the boys’ category, finishing with a convincing 77 points with Peterhouse coming second with 254 points, and St George’s third with 461 and Lomagundi fourth with 489. Hellenic won the girls’ category with 250 points, closely followed by Peterhouse Girls in second with 260, third hosts Lomagundi with 304 and in fourth Arundel with 352. The overall co-educational winners were hosts Lomagundi with a combined 793 points, whose strong fielding of athletes showed a familiarity with the hilly terrain.
Another victory for 2016 cross country was the inclusion of a boys’ team from Goldridge College who travelled from Kwekwe to participate in the meet.
|U15 Girls 4.1km||17:04.6
|U15 Boys 4.1km||15:19.7
|U17 Girls 4.1km||18:04.2
|U17 Boys 6.5km||23:11.0
|Open Girls 4.1km||17:07.7
Gabrielle De Chassart
|Open Boys 7.4km||25:39.0