It has been such a long time since we last took to the playing fields of competitive sport. Therefore, it was a pleasure to see all our Bridgewater Prep III-VI children in action this week, competing in an internal cross country event around the grounds of the school. However, this was no ordinary event, as the results from the top four runners in each age group would go forward to represent Bridgewater in the Salford Virtual Cross Country League for 2020.

With intra-school competition not yet on the horizon, credit must go to the organizers of the Salford Cross Country League for deciding to run a virtual event across the borough. Participating schools have been asked to design a course of exactly one mile in distance around their school and results will be compared and analysed to find out individual and team winners of the competition for this year.

Prep VI took to the course first on Wednesday and immediately showed an enthusiasm and commitment that was a delight to see. The girls’ race was won by a matter of inches in the end, as Molly pipped Esme to the post in a fantastic race. Miranda was cheered home across the line in third place, with Abigail and Jasmine not far behind.

If the girls’ race was close then the boys’ race was even closer! Sebastian sprinted into an early lead, but after 400 metres was overhauled by his brother Luca and Alfie. This was the formation for the remainder of the race, with Alfie and Luca swapping the lead at regular intervals. The race took a decisive twist as Luca took a wrong turning that Alfie seized upon and stormed ahead with 300 metres to go. The boys sprinted home like Usain Bolt in a time of just over 7 minutes with absolutely nothing between them. Sebastian chased the boys down to finish third, whilst a delighted Toby came in next, ahead of chasing pack that included Luca, Harrison and Dexter.

The Prep V races where not quite as dramatic at the finish line, but they were no less entertaining overall. Maya put her Salford Cross Country experiences to good use as she won the girls race quite comfortably. Lucy and Ava put up a good challenge to finish in second and third. Meanwhile the boys’ event was a two horse race from start to finish. Alex and Anton left the rest of the field trailing early on and maintained the distance between the other runners throughout the race. Alex held Anton off to take victory in a fabulous sprint finish to complete the course in 7 minutes 50 seconds. Sam came home in a deserved third, with Frankie in fourth and Blake just behind in fifth.

The weather remained kind on Thursday as the Prep III and IV races took place around the same one mile course. San dominated from start to finish in the Prep IV race and completed the course almost a minute ahead of Leo and Lucas in second and third respectively. A special mention should also go to Oliver who finished the course when others couldn’t and he did so with a smile on his face and completely clean trainers! The Prep IV girls’ race was a bit more competitive, although Amelia cantered to victory in the end. Darcie and Lottie battled it out for the remaining podium spots and then volunteered to help marshal the final race of the day.

Prep III were the last to run and it was worth the wait, providing the closest finish of all the races. Despite a wrong turn that cost the front runners valuable time, Oscar, Jacob, Jensen, Henry and Maia all crossed the line less than two metres apart. Maia won the girls race but also finished in third place overall and almost beat all of the boys in the sprint finish. Oscar outpaced Jacob, Henry and Jensen to win the boys’ race. Ruby and Isabelle finished in second and third place in the girls’ race, fractions of a second ahead of Emily and Isabella.

It is definitely nice to see Bridgewater Prep back competing again after such a long time. We will be hosting another Bridgewater Virtual Cross Country event after half term to coincide with the AJIS Cross Country Championships in November. Well done to everyone who took part this week and keep up the good work in PE lessons and extra-curricular clubs.

Virtually Nothing Between Cross Country Runners!

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