IT was a day of mixed emotions for Swindon Harrier Will Crisp as the British Cross Challenge Series reached its climax in Birmingham.

The 14-year-old, who lives in Hinton Parva near Wanborough, lined up for the fifth and final race in the series lying second overall in the under 15 boys’ category and knowing that a solid result should see him at least retain that position and his share of the overall prize list.

Unfortunately Crisp had his worst performance of the season as he could only finish 97th – leaving his overall position in doubt.

“I have gone through the race with my dad trying to get to the bottom of it,” said Crisp.

“It was not a good race for me and I am a very disappointed with only finishing 97th. The same thing happened last year when I ran at Birmingham. I guess I’ll have to put it down to experience.”

But amidst the disappointment there proved to be some consolation for Crisp that softened the blow of a bad day “I still managed to finish third in the series so got a share of the prize money so at least I got something out of it,” added Crisp.

“Also I have another year in this age group and I have only done three races as big as this in my life and it was just so quick. Clearly I have to think hard about what is happening in these big events.”

And Crisp has anther one coming up as he will end his winter season with the English Schools’ Cross Country Championships in Leicestershire on Saturday.

“Last year I got spiked and lost a shoe so hopefully I will have a better day this time!” said Crisp.

In the under 20 women’s race fellow Harrier Lillie Bellamy finished a creditable 31st but clubmate Jacob Platt just missed the top 100 in the under 17 men’s race.

Former Marlborough & District Junior AC runner Gemma Shepherd continued her improved form with an excellent 20th in the under 17 women’s race.