All eyes will be on Goodwood today (Saturday) when Chichester Runners & AC stage their final cross-country fixture of the autumn.
It’s a Hampshire League fixture which will attract clubs from Berkshire, Dorset, Wiltshire, Sussex and the Channel Islands as well as Hampshire itself.
In the ten years since the Goodwood venue has been part of the league’s fixture list, many present or future internationals have been in action including more recently GB internationals Steff Twell, Louise Damon and Emma Pallant, who have gone right through the age groups to now have reached senior level.
One to look out for this year will be Aldershot’s Emelia Gorecka, who has been setting new fastest times in national events in the junior ranks and is tipped as one to watch for Rio in 2016.
The men’s races have been no less competitive with Chris Thompson, another Aldershot athlete, running Mo Farah close over 10k and another runner looking forward to four years’ time.
Chichester’s squad will welcome the chance to pit their fitness against the best and should give a good account of themselves across all age groups.
The action starts at 11.30am when there will be a 2,000m primary Schools run before the main programme.
Entries for the primary race are open to any pupil in school Year 5 or 6 and registration is from the officials’ tent opposite Goodwood Racecourse from 10.30am. Runners can enter either as part of a team or as an individual.
The league races start at midday with the under-13 girls and the final race is at 2.30pm when a field of 300 will tackle the senior men’s 9,000m course.
And while the endurance and middle distance members of the club are involved in the throes of the cross country season, Chichester’s juniors are getting ready for the winter’s Indoor Sportshall programme with their first league fixture at Tanbridge House School near Horsham on Sunday, November 18.
With all clubs enjoying a surge in membership this autumn, competition is sure to be fierce across all three age groups - under-11 (school Years 5 & 6) under-13 (Years 7 & 8) and under-15 (Years 9 & 10).
For those wishing to get involved in a branch of the sport which appeals especially to sprinters, throwers and jumpers, Chichester Runners hold indoor training on Wednesday evenings at 6.30pm at Westgate Leisure.
In addition there will be an open meeting at Biship Luffa School on Tuesday, November 13, from 4pm to 6pm.
Further information is available from club secretary Phil Baker on 01243 533784 or on firstname.lastname@example.org