QGSSSA athletic young guns shine at state cross country


Cross Country is one of the biggest sports on the Queensland School Sport calendar, and has a long history of providing a pathway to elite distance running, and a stepping stone to many other professional sporting careers including Swimming, Tennis, Triathlon, Football and Rugby League. The Queensland School Sport Cross Country Championships wraps up today and was an event full of incredible athletic performances.

QGSSSA Schools enable a culture of participation and performance in cross country running to produce athletes able to succeed in one of the world’s toughest sports. This has developed an athletic culture amongst the schools and encouraged a clear pathway for the girls to proceed through to District and Regional Teams, with 60 QGSSSA Athletes lining up at yesterday’s Queensland State School Championships at Rivermount College, Yatala. This is the race that decided who reigns supreme in school age Cross Country running in Queensland.

Rivermount is famous for being a “true” Cross Country course providing hills, sharp turns, undulating surfaces and an abundance of mud, spectacular theatre for supporters and they were their in droves this weekend. There were some famous faces and new names amongst the stand-out performances, and a large number of QGSSSA students punched their tickets to the School Sport Australia Cross Country titles to be held in Adelaide from 26 August 2022. They will be donning the maroon tracksuit with pride in the first National Cross since 2019 in Wollongong.

This will be extra special for athletes such as 17 year old Ella Rodwell from Somerville House, who came second behind Aspen Anderson of the Gold Coast. Ella has not been able to compete at an elite level at School Sport Cross Country due to COVID cancellations, and will be one to watch in August. Ella will be joined in the senior ranks by Georgie Gilroy of Brisbane State High School, Isabella Harte of St Margaret’s Anglican Girls School, Kobi Walker of Moreton Bay College and Gabrielle Schmidt from St Peters Lutheran College.

Competition was fierce across all races yesterday, 13 years girls saw Saffron Jenkinson of Brisbane State High and Sienna Barr of St Peters finish on the podium leading then into the combined age group divisions which heat things up further. Zoe McElwaine from Brisbane Girls Grammar and Matilda Lee of St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School went toe to toe in the 14 and 15 years race, pushing each other right to the finish. And we will also see Emma-Kate Watt of St Aidan’s heading to Nationals in the 18 and 19 year old division, capping off a stellar high school running career.

Susan Uhlmann
QGSSSA Content Coordinator
Monday, 18 July