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Thirteen Terrington students competed at the North Yorkshire School Games Cross Country Finals at Dalby Forest on 5 November.

All the runners had qualified at last month’s Ryedale District trials held at Lady Lumley’s School by placing in the top 8 of their races. However, they now faced a field of 570 competitors from across North Yorkshire, all of whom who had successfully trialled and amongst whom were several county and national competitors.

Conditions on arrival were wet, windy and muddy, and we were kept from walking the course and planning out good lines, so focused our attention on keeping as warm and dry as possible. Despite the driving rain which persisted for most of the day, Terrington spirits did not drop, and once the first of our runners departed – Jessica Cook in Year 3 - we were cheering all the way. Jessica ran valiantly and managed to beat one of the children she lost to at October’s trials. Her race will prove very useful experience for her as she gets older.

Next up, William Rivis and Arthur Camacho in Year 4. Both shot off like bullets into the distance, and by the time we saw them again, William was running home in 8th place, a great performance. Arthur came in 54th out of the 73 finalists who finished. Georgie Brown raced next in the Year 4 girls race, working her socks off to keep up with some strong opposition. She came 22nd out of 70 finishers. I note ‘finishers’, as this course was proving more challenging than some runners were used to as the course deteriorated.

A quick lunch break – food, warmth, towels – in the minibus and some tactics considered (in these conditions, make sure footwear is held on very tightly, and just try to keep upright!).

Year 5 boys next, William Farnsworth and Michael Mulryne for Terrington. Again, a very challenging run, now against many club runners with summer experience to give them an advantage. William came home 3rd for Ryedale and 45th overall, and Michael 6th for Ryedale (two boys did not make it back, thus Mikey gained two places since the Ryedale trials) and 61st overall.

Year 5 girls next, these being the experienced Annabel Roberts and Emily Rycroft, and Thea Camacho going for her first finals. Annabel worked hard and held a good position for the majority of the race and, as last year, we were hopeful of a podium place. Unfortunately, injuries come at inopportune moments, Annabel limped home in 10th place, but still the top-placed Ryedale runner. Just behind in 14th came Emily, a better run than last year; then Thea in 46th with a great performance from her.

Year 6 boys up next, our podium hopes again pinned to Theo Cross. Training mostly over longer distances than the 1500m sprint that ensued, Theo found himself reeling in competitors from the half way point as usual, but struggled to make enough ground on the very best this year - 17th place in the end, but admirable considering the conditions faced.

The Year 6 girls' race completed the day, with Tilly Rivis, Rosie Cooke and Roma Bensalem running for Terrington. The head of this race was controlled by a large number of highly experienced county and national competitors, so 15th place (and 1st for Ryedale) for Tilly was quite, quite respectable. Rosie in 19th just behind, another promising run, and Roma in 50th proved a good result for her first competition at this level.

Overall, a very challenging day with awful conditions under foot and in the sky. Terrington Hall students did themselves proud though, indefatigable to the last and high spirits all the way home. Many thanks again to all the parents and grandparents who supported across the day.

Stuart Keens

{gallery}Dalby cross country finals 2019{/gallery}