Youngsters from Hercules Wimbledon Athletic Club experienced some of the most testing conditions of their young lives when they battled through gale force gusts and torrential rain in the Bruce Judd Surrey Young Athletes cross country relays at Stoke Park, Guildford, on Saturday, writes Tom Pollak.

The girls under 15 trio experienced the worst conditions of the six races as the three runners battled through torrential rain - their consolation for braving the elements was to come away with a well deserved set of silver medals. First leg runner Millie Thorpe handed over just outside the medal positions in fourth place covering the muddy and slippery 2.3km circuit in 8 minutes 35 seconds.

Georgia Winter also clocked 8:35 as she passed two runners on the second leg in moving into the silver medal position. Anchor leg runner Lulu Weisz was the fastest of the Hercules Wimbledon trio consolidating second place in clocking 8:19, only two seconds slower than the day’s fastest runner. The team clocked 25:29, 15 seconds behind winners Guildford & Godalming.

Hercules Wimbledon fielded two other under 15 teams. Millie Doyle (8:41), Eloise Davies (9:01) and Lauren Armitage (9:22) combined to finish seventh in 28:39 while Bailey O’Leary (9:27), Cliona O’Brien (9:33) and Charlotte Lam (9:39) were ninth in 28:39.

Richmond and Twickenham Times: Hercules Wimbledon's silver medal-winning under 15 girls team Hercules Wimbledon's silver medal-winning under 15 girls team

Team manager Anne Hegvold said: “The conditions were very challenging so the girls did very well in the circumstances.” Race official Mark Purser added: “It was very muddy underfoot in places. It was typical cross country weather, though.”

The girls under 17 team were also favourites to get among the medals but their hopes were dashed when Rebekah Riches, a key member of the trio, dropped out suffering from tonsillitis. First leg runner Georgie Clarke posted the second fastest time of the day, 8:12 while Selma Hegvold was third on the second leg in 9:30.

First leg runner Sophie Thorpe was the fastest member of the girls under 13 team which finished ninth. She clocked 9:28 with twin sisters Sophie (9:33) and Charlotte Conway (9:39) completing the trio. 

Making his debut for Hercules Wimbledon, Ibrahim Mohamed Achchi was the fastest of seven under 13 boys in action for the club. He clocked 8:42 on the second leg in moving through from 18th to 14th place for the B team which finished 15th in 28:13. Other members of the trio were Sam Vowles (9:19) and Hugo Kelly (10:12).

Oliver Holden (8:53) was the fastest member of the Hercules Wimbledon A team which finished 13th in 8:53. Jack Holden (8:10) and Matt Weisz (9:00) were the other members of the trio.

First leg runner William Belton (8:15), who handed over in eighth place, was the fastest member of the boys under 15 team which finished 12th in 25:01. Joseph Willis (8:48) and Adam Hammed (8:23) were the other members of the team.

Hercules Wimbledon’s Claire Grima was the third woman over 40 finisher in Sunday’s Frankfurt Marathon in Germany. Making her debut in the event, Claire, who regularly competes in the London Marathon, was almost five minutes outside her best marathon time set in the London race in April in clocking 2:45:22. Husband Dave finished more than two minutes ahead of his wife in 2:42:53. He also clocked his personal best of 2:40:42 in London this year. Another Hercules Wimbledon runner, Robbie Hynes, running his first marathon of the year, clocked 2:54:58 more than four minutes slower than his best marathon time.

Hercules Wimbledon had a quartet of parkrun winners on Saturday. Superset Lisa Thomas was top woman finisher in Wimbledon Common in 20:48 to post the top age-graded performance. Veteran Gina Galbraith made a winning debut in the Poole 5km event winning the women’s race in 18:48 and finishing 12th out of 592 runners. Andy Parker headed home a 139-strong field to make a winning debut in the Claire parkrun in Haywards Heath in 18:39.

Teenager Ellen Weir headed home the women’s field when she made her debut in the Crissy Fields parkrun in Tunbridge Wells. She was fourth out of 146 runners in 18:18. Her dad, Andy, was second in 17:11.

Elsewhere, Elena Dauster was second woman finisher  on her debut appearance in Edinburgh in 19:10 while Rob Tuer was also second out of 242 runners in Longrun Meadow, Taunton in 17:08

This weekend, Hercules Wimbledon are competing in the opening Downs Young Athletes cross country league meeting on Epsom Downs on Sunday starting at 10.45am.