Haringey Youth Grab Cross Country Gold

Haringey and Bromley launched the new Balfour Beatty London Youth Games season in great style as they won the male and female cross country titles at a glorious Parliament Hill on Saturday 16 November.

Olympic marathon runner and former London Youth Games competitor Scott Overall was on hand to present the prizes as over 1231 youngsters took on the Hampstead Heath courses.

Haringey have not won the cross country title before but they have continued their year on year improvement to win the male competition.

They were fourth in the same competition last year and seventh the previous year. On a great day for the north London borough, they also won gold in the under 17 males team event and took home the silver salver for winning the overall under 11s title.

Their day was typified by twins Paulos and Petros Asgodom of Woodside High School, who battled to gold and bronze in the under 17 males race. Paulos said: “The London Youth Games are always good to race in. I came today hoping to win and I did, I’m so pleased.

“I’ve raced here three times before and come third twice and second. This is my last race with the London Youth Games, so to win is great. I love racing for Haringey, I’m always up for it. The borough has helped me to get to this point and I’m really grateful for all the support.”

Bromley’s victory in the female competition was down to a really solid all-round team performance, which meant they were first in the under 15 event and third in both the under 13 and under 17 events. Team Manager Jay Galley was confident his team would deliver.

He said: “We had a very strong side and I fully expected to win today. They’ve done a lot of training to prepare for today; 3-4 sessions a week. Most of the girls train for running clubs as well so they get extra practice there too.

“It was an honour for the girls to compete for their borough today. There was a lot of competition to get into the team this year – 20 girls competed for 12 places on the team so they feel really chuffed to get into the team.”

Perhaps the race of the day was the girls under 15 race which saw a titanic struggle between two English champions.

Greenwich’s Sabrina Sinha, English Schools 1500m Champion just managed to out sprint last year’s English under 13 Cross Country Champion Katy-Ann McDonald of Wandsworth in a thrilling finish.

For Sinha it was her third successive London Youth Games title having won the under 13s race two years ago and the under 15s event last year.