Results from annual cross country race

Mon 13 Oct, 2014



Sixty runners gathered at Stowe School yesterday (Sunday 12 October 2014) to take part in the annual UK Fire Services Cross Country Championships, incorporating the annual Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service Cross Country Race.

Brigades represented were Avon, Buckinghamshire, Cumbria, Essex, Hampshire, Hereford & Worcester, Lancashire, Leicestershire, London, Mid & West Wales, Oxfordshire, Tyne & Wear, West Midlands and West Yorkshire.

Piers Vallance from Great Holm Fire Station and Libby Gassor from Aylesbury Fire Station won their respective races in the Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service Cross Country Race for the fourth successive year. Piers completed the men’s 8.8km course in 34 minutes 37 seconds, and Libby the women’s 4.4km course in 24 minutes 2 seconds. Piers was fourth man to finish the UK Fire Services Cross Country Championships, and Libby the fourth woman.

The winner of the men's race in the UK Fire Services Cross Country Championships was current World Trail Running Champion Ricky Lightfoot from Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service. Ricky, wearing the number 300, led from the start (see picture above).

He finished in 30 minutes 57 seconds, nearly three minutes ahead of second-placed Brendan McMilllan from Tyne & Wear Fire and Rescue Service (33 minutes 41 seconds), who was also last year’s runner-up.

Six-times winner Nigel Stirk from Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service, who won the race in 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 and was second in 2009, finished third in 34 minutes 19 seconds.

The winner of the women's race in the UK Fire Services Cross Country Championships was Jo Haley from Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (4.4km course - 19 minutes 21 seconds). Second was Lottie Chant from Mid & West Wales Fire and Rescue Service (20 minutes 27 seconds) and third Bryony Martindale from Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service (22 minutes 2 seconds).

Leicestershire won both the men’s and women’s team events, with Nigel Stirk, Darren Weston, Stephen Ball and Fraser Harris triumphing for the men and Bryony Martindale, Angela Beresford and Nicola Gore for the women.

The field included nearly 20 guests from clubs including Vale of Aylesbury Athletic Club, Buckingham and Stowe Running Club and David Lloyd Redway Runners, Milton Keynes.

First guest home in the men’s race was Redway Runners’ Keith Miller (35 minutes 49 seconds), and first guest woman home was Piers Vallance’s’ wife Claire (19 minutes 8 seconds).

Individual and team winners were presented with their medals after the race by Mrs Doris Whitehead, mother of the tenant farmer at Stowe, Chris Whitehead.

Race organiser Eddie Gutteridge, Life Vice-President of the Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service Sports Association, said: "The use of this venue for cross country running is a special privilege to the fire and rescue service.

“I would like to express my sincere thanks to the National Trust and Stowe School for the use of facilities, and to Chris Whitehead for his support." 

Click here for a full set of results.