The Bendigo Bats scored victory in two classes in Saturday’s latest round of XCR ’21 athletics action at Cruden Farm.

The Athletics Bendigo Region followed up success at Jells Park and Lardner Park by being the number one team in Divisions 2, second in Division 4 men and first team of all across the line on the testing Langwarrin course.

Several of Bendigo’s stars put the disappointment of not being able to race at the Gold Coast Marathon behind them to run impressive times at Cruden Farm.
Dual national 10km cross-country champion Andy Buchanan marked a hat-trick of XCR wins this season by completing the 12km showdown in 36.08.

Bendigo again claimed division two honours through great runs by Nathan Stoate 37.20, 7th; Brady Threlfall 37.25, 8th; Archie Reid 37.46, 11th; Jamie Cook 39.08, 19th; and Nigel Preston 40.56, 38th.
The Bats charged to victory ahead of Frankston, Mentone, Richmond, Glenhuntly and Melbourne University.
The division four men’s line-up of Stephen van Rees 41.16, 42nd; Glenn McMillan 42.08, 50th; Luke Millard 46.03, 108th; Matthew Schepisi 46.09, 110th; and Mike Bieleny 46.15 (M55), 114th was in hot form.
The team of Jill Wilkie 50.43 (W55) 30th; Alice Wilkinson 50.48, 31st; and Brianna Maddern 51.53, 42nd; was first in women’s division four race over 12km.
Bendigo scored 103 points to lead Mornington, 162, and Diamond Valley, 343.
Bendigo was runner-up in men’s division seven through the feats of Nick McDermott 47.53 (M45), 136th; Darren Hartland 48.45 (M45), 145th; David Heislers 52.44 (M55), 196th; and Trevor Kelly 54.57 (M60), 218th.
Athletics Bendigo was also represented by Anne Buckley 56.02 (W50), 57th; and Jim Russell 1:00.35 (M60), 255th.
In the under-20 8km, Taryn Furletti ran 33.38 to be third.
Matt Buckell was third in the under-20 6km in 19.30.
Angus Macafee clocked 29.46 to be 17th in the under-18 8km.
Tullie Rowe ran 24.13 to be fourth in the under-18 6km race.
University Pride clubmates Max Rowe 23.04, 11th; and Mason Woodward 24.50, 20th, ran strongly in the under-16 6km event.
The next round of XCR ’21 is on Saturday, July 17, when athletes contest a 10km run at Bundoora.