Prestwold Hall National and County Schools CC

Eighteen young WGEL athletes travelled to Prestwold Hall in Loughborough over the weekend to compete at the National &County Schools Cross Country event.

The event, renowned nationally, attracts a high standard of school and club runner and over 900 athletes took part in junior (school year 3-6) and senior races (school year 8-11).

Full results:

Strict rules were in place for all athletes, parents and volunteers at the venue (Covid Secure) for all racing procedures, arrival and registration. The event was designated as an England Athletics test for physical competition, after being previously cancelled in March due to the first UK lockdown. It was testimony to the organisers for their efforts in getting the event on, and ironic that a new UK lockdown was announced just hours after the muddy fields emptied.


The Club is pleased to announce that three of our club members have been nominated for awards at the England Athletics London Region awards evening on the 19th November.

Keith Hopson and Don Blackett have been shortlisted for the awards in the category of Services to Athletics. Keith and Don are Life Members of the club and have been past Presidents.

Keith joined the club in the 1950’s and after his competitive career was over, he became one of the club’s main administrators over a number of years filling many roles on the club committee. He continues to help administer the Women’s Track and Field team. In addition to his work for the club, Keith has contributed at the national level in various capacities. He is currently the Finance Officer for the National Athletics League.

Don joined the club in the 1960’s after he moved to London from the North East. A tireless worker for the club and for the sport’s governing bodies. He covered several jobs on the club committee for many years and until recently was the club’s  cross-country course setter for all home matches. He became a top-grade track and field official at club, county, major national and International meetings. Many owe their start to becoming athletics’ officials because of the training and incentive that Don gave them.

Sam Wintle has been  shortlisted in the nominations for the Young Volunteer of the Year. Sam, along with his dad Andrew, has been running the WASP’s section (under 11’s) since January 2019. During the current uncertain periods of lockdowns and restricted training, there has been a large increase in the number of U11’s joining the club. Sam has successfully continued to run the section with the support of the Young Members section.

Sam has a great rapport with the U11’s and the parents who come along to watch and occasionally help. His programme of training for the youngsters has helped develop many to full membership of the club and compete for the club at the U13’s level on the track, road and cross country.

Jack Petchey Awards

At our Ashton U/11s squad training yesterday we presented 3 young helpers, Miya Maeda, Jessica Adams & Ellen Savidge, with their Jack Petchey Awards after being nominated for all the excellent work that they, along with the other 11 WGEL Young Helpers, have contributed since June this year. In all, the helpers have given up 252 coaching hours in total to help Joe Everitt, and Sam & Andrew Wintle, whether that was at Roding Valley Fields, when we were unable to use the track at Ashton, and then when we came back in July. Without this help we simply couldn't accommodate so many children, and we now also have a waiting list - that is the success of the guys who run it.

These 3 girls have contributed 80 hours in total just on their own, which is a phenomenal amount of time that they have sacrificed, and yet another reason why it is so successful at the moment. GO TEAM WOODFORD!

Hever Castle Triathlon

With all prior triathlons cancelled over the summer, Hever did a magnificent job staging this event which has always been the biggest youth triathlon in the UK and worldwide. The event saw strict social distancing rules applied, with the first discipline, the swim, having triathletes start out ten seconds apart.

Conditions over the two days were cold and windy, which meant the water temperature was only 13 degrees. This forced the swim part of the event to be reduced by 50%. WGEL had no fewer than seven triathletes competing over the two days.

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