FEW runners in the history of Wiltshire athletics will have enjoyed a year like Simon Nott in 2018.

The Calne Running Club athlete delivered a magnificent finale to a glorious 12 months as he retained his Wiltshire cross country title at Bath University on Sunday.

That success means Nott’s status as the county’s best male distance runner was emphatically underlined as he now holds the Wiltshire titles at 5k, 5 miles, 10k, the half marathon and cross country.

“There has been a lot of hard work, but it has been very rewarding as well,” said Nott.

“I’ll now take time out to recover and reflect on the year and think about my goals for 2019. It is very nice to hold all these country title as well as improving my personal bests at the same time.

“I have been successful in all the races I targeted and it is nice to have titles over that breadth of distances. It has been a very good year.”

For good measure, Nott also beat the best that Avon and Somerset could throw at him for the second successive year as he retained his Tri-Counties title at the same time with a masterful tactical display.

Content to sit in with a large pack around the opening small circuit, Nott started to exert pressure on the first of the three big laps around the university grounds.

“I was running alongside Taunton AC’s Phil Burden for a while,and while I was stronger up the hill, he caught me up on the flat,” added Nott.

“So on the second big lap, I made a really big effort to shake him off as I didn’t want to leave it to the final lap. I managed to open a good gap and maintained that to the finish line.

“It was a really good race, a lot of fun and a nice way to end a good year.”

Swindon Harriers’ Simon Byrne kept his form well despite running alone for most of the race to claim the Wiltshire silver medal, with club-mate Sergio Martinez third.

In the team competition, the Avon Valley Runners squad of Chris Roxburgh, Rich Harding, Gary MacAlister, Stuart Sellers, Tim Lerwill and Mike Sargeant finished second overall to Bristol-based Westbury Harriers and top Wiltshire club, just ahead of Chippenham Harriers, for whom Paul Gardiner was their leading scorer in 17th.

The Wiltshire senior women’s title went to Chippenham Harriers’ Cordula Hurcum, who finished sixth overall, 19 seconds clear of club-mate Emma Hines.

With excellent support from Michelle Maxwell and Julia Maddocks in 10th and 16th respectively, Chippenham also claimed the overall Tri-Counties team title from the Avon Valley Runners quartet of Veryan Cranston, Gemma Lawton, Jennifer Marlow and Diane Hier.

In the junior races, Hilperton’s John Howorth caught the eye as he won the mixed U20/17 men’s race, just four seconds ahead of Trowbridge runner Will Stockley.

Tri-Counties Cross Country Championships, Bath University

Senior men: 1 Simon Nott (Calne) 34:10; 2 Phil Burden (Taun, M40) 34:45; 3 Simon Byrne (Swin) 35:11; 4 Oliver Beale (WH, M40) 35:36; 5 Joseph Donworth (Frome RC) 35:52; 6 Miles Chandler (B&W) 35:56.

Wiltshire: 1 Nott; 2 Byrne; 3 Sergio Martinez (Swin).

Teams – overall: 1 Westbury Harriers (Beale, Alex Hamblin, Anthony Glover, Richard Noble, Ken Ham & Matt Swaine); 2 Avon Valley Runners (Chris Roxburgh, Rich Harding, Gary MacAlister, Stuart Sellers, Tim Lerwill, Mike Sargeant); 3 Chippenham Harriers (Paul Gardiner, Andrew Duncan, John Keat, Nick Hancock, Richard Smith, Alwyn Royall).

U20 men: 1 John Howorth (TB); 2 Will Stockley (TB); 3 Ben Lloyd (Wells).

U15 boys: 1 Joe Ponter (Taun); 2 Seamus Robinson (WH); 3 Thomas Heal (Taun).

Wiltshire: 1 Robert Jones (New Forest Juniors); 2 Lukas Bailey (Sals); 3 Jack Gunning (Swin).

U13 boys: 1 Dylan Stoneman (TB); 2 Harry Maxwell (TB); 3 Jack Harvey (Wells).

Wiltshire: 1 Maxwell; 2 Jacob Pritchard (Madja); 3 Henri Cotineau (Chipp).

U11 boys: 1 Charlie Coles (Sals); 2 Jacob Fleming (AVR); 3 Tom Howard (WH).

Senior women: 1 Kate Drew (Taun) 24:38; 2 Isabelle Talbot Price (B&W) 25:11; 3 Catie O’Donoghue (B&W) 25:20; 4 Helen Southcott (Wells) 26:04; 5 Kirstie Booth (Taun) 27:26; 6 Cordula Hurcum (Chipp) 27:35.

Wiltshire: 1 Hurcum; 2 Emma Hines (Chipp); 3 Veryan Cranston (AVR).

Teams: 1 Chippenham Harriers (Hurcum, Emma Hines, Michelle Maxwell, Julia Maddocks); 2 Avon Valley Runners (Veryan Cranston, Gemma Lawton, Jennifer Marlow, Diane Hier); 3 Shrewton Running Club .

U20/17 women: 1 Elise Thorner (Wells); 2 Rosie Hamilton-James (WH); 3 Ellie Hobbs (WH).

Wiltshire: 1 Lucy Fitzpatrick (TB); 2 Catriona Edington (Madja); 3 India Ibbotson (TB).

U15 girls: 1 Bea Wood (Sals); 2 Dalis Jones (WH); 3 Alice Bridger-Morales (NSAC).

Wiltshire: 1 Wood; 2 Lilly Jones (New Forest); 3 Lavinia Rai (Swin).

U13 girls: 1 Keira Devereux (NSAC); 2 Clementine Lee (WH); 3 Laura Chance (WH).

Wiltshire: 1 Sophie Nicholls (Sals); 2 Naryani Costa Jafrate (Chipp); 3 Bella Rees (New Forest).

U11 girls: 1 Jasmine Spear (WH); 2 Daisy Sears (Sals); 3 Isabelle Hugill (WH).

  • MAX Davis enjoyed a superb debut in the Telford 10k on Sunday as he clocked a time of 31mins 20secs for 73rd place in a top class field.

The time puts Davis, who is a member of Avon Valley Runners, 14th in the South West rankings and is the fastest by a teenager.