Australian Cross Country Championships

Box Hill had some great results at the Australian cross country championships, held at Yarra Bend on August 5 and 6.

The fields were of a very high quality, but the club still gained a number of prominent placings.

Men’s Open 12 km.

In the men’s open 12 km. event, Julian Dwyer ran a great race to finish 5th behind Lee Troop, Dean Cavouto, Steve Moneghetti and Rod De Highden. Andrew Letherby held on well to finish seventh, while Graeme Olden gradually worked his way through the field to come in 20th. The Box Hill team of Julian Dwyer, Andrew Letherby and Graeme Olden finished a close second to a South Australian team in the national club championships.

Other placings were Scott Jackson in 32nd and Jonathon Tyler, 54th.


1 Lee TROOP VIC 36:22.6
2 Dean CAVUOTO ACT 36:37.7
3 Stephen MONEGHETTI VIC 36:55.7
4 Rod DE HIGHDEN VIC 37:09.2
5 Julian DWYER VIC 37:20.0
7 Andrew LETHERBY VIC 37:52.9
20 Graeme OLDEN VIC 39:18.1
32 Scott JACKSON VIC 40:29.9
54 Jonathon TYLER VIC 47:22.5

Men’s Under 20 , 8 km.

Sam Hassett showed a great return to form to be competitive through out this event and eventually finish in sixth position in a time of 26:47.

Women Open 8 km.

In another top class field, Anna Thompson ran strongly to finish in a very creditable 8th position (29:02) and be a part of the winning Victorian team.

George Connell showed the benefits of a hard winters training to finish in 20th (and third among the under 23s in 31:21), a good performance, especially considering this race was ten times her preferred distance!

Women’s Under 18, 4 km.

Jocelyn Keage ran brilliantly to battle for the lead with Ruth McDonnell of Queensland, before finally finishing second to the Queenslander. The national silver medal caps a great winter season by Jocelyn and promises great things for the future.

Prue Healy and Jessica De Bruin have had some close tussles this winter and this race was no exception, with Prue finishing 10th just ahead of Jessica in 11th place. Emily Smith was close behind in 14th.


2 Jocelyn KEAGE 14:08.6
10 Prue HEALY 14:55.5
11 Jessica DE BRUIN 14:59.3
14 Emily SMITH 15:18.0

Women’s Under 14, 3 km.

Hayley Tomlinson continued her great form to win the national title. Hayley and Fiona Nash of Doncaster pulled well clear of the rest of the field, with Hayley hanging on to the lead that she set up in the middle stages of the race to cross the line a clear winner.

Juliet Thornton also ran well. With less than 20 seconds covering the field from 5th place to 20th place, Juliet came in 17th, a good result and not far behind the place getters.

National Club Relays.

The day after the nationals Box Hill competed in the national club relays. Box Hill performed well in both the men’s and the women’s open 4´ 2000m. events.

The women’s team included three under 18 athletes. Jocelyn Keage ran first, covering the 2 km in 7:02 to bring the team in second position. Prue Healy ran second and chased down her Queensland opponent and run a time of 7:21, then handed over to Jessica De Bruin just s stride behind the leaders. Jessica ran 7:23, fast enough to give Box Hill a commanding lead by the time of the final change over. George Connell, a little leg weary from her 8km race the previous day, strode around in 7:24 to give the Box Hill team an emphatic victory.

The men’s team suffered from a number of late withdrawals, but we somehow managed to field a team (once Tim Renowden finally managed to find his way to Yarra Bend!). Knowing his lowly state of fitness and not wanting to sabotage the teams competitiveness early in the race, Chris O’Connor volunteered to run the last leg.

Dale Bickham ran a good first leg to finish in 6:14, about 5 seconds behind the leading South Australian team. Graeme Olden took over and running a fraction of a second under 6 minutes, turned the 5 second deficit into an 8 second lead. Tim Renowden ran strongly through the first 1 km, but then his South Australian opponent started to close. Tim finished in 6:15 dead level the South Australians. Chris O’Connor stuck with the leader briefly, before falling back to run 6:40 and bring the team in second place.