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SEAA Six Stage Road Relays, Aldershot, 23/09/2023

Hillingdon AC’s senior men finished 37th at the SEAA Six Stage Road Relays at Rushmoor Arena in a high quality, highly competitive race against the top clubs in the South of England.

This race acts as the qualifying event for the National Six Stage Road Relays and as such, the team were chasing a place in the first 25 A teams in order to secure qualification. However, few were expecting the standard of competition at this event to be quite so high and so despite running a combined time of 1:57:30 over the six 6km legs (over six minutes quicker than the time the team recorded last year), we missed out on qualification for the Nationals by just five places.

However, this shouldn’t diminish the performance that the team put in, with all members of the team recording a sub 20 minute time over the undulating two-lap Rushmoor Arena Circuit.

Liam Holbrook was first off for the club, running over a minute quicker than the time he recorded at this race last year with 19:19 to put the team in 48th position after leg one. Liam handed over to Kallum Pritchard who knocked over a minute and a half off the time he ran last year with a 19:58 clocking.

Matt Whitfield was on leg three and paced his leg excellently to record 19:53 before handing over to Jamal Ismael. Jamal was making his debut for the club and put in another strong performance to move the team up eight places for 51st to 43rd with a time of 19:28.

Tom Squires was also marking his road relay debut for the club and backed up his recent performance in the Big Half with another good time of 19:34. At this point the team were sitting in 39th place but there were significant gaps between athletes. James Laing was on the final leg and despite running the quickest leg of any of the team of 19:16 this only moved the team up a further two places.

Phil Warburton ran the first leg of an incomplete B team with a time of 20:32.

Full credit goes to everyone that competed for the club in this event. Before the race I would have thought that a combined time of 1:57:30 would have seen us qualify quite comfortably but the standard of athletics on display at Aldershot in these relays was simply on another level and so despite the team exceeding my expectations we fell just short of qualification.

Full results may be found here.