Trusty Servant May 2019 No.127 - Page 12

No.127 Elizabeth, named Alex Riddle, who’d seen us in action in the UK. Batman was popular at the time and he was dubbed ‘The Riddler’, our running nemesis. We race Bishop’s and Wynberg Boys in Cape Town, St Andrew’s in Grahamstown, Grey High in Port Elizabeth and Hilton College. Our aim was to win every race on the tour; we did it, all three times. Bishop’s was the school at which OW headmaster Canon George ‘Gog’ Ogilvie introduced Winchester football in 1861, so we had a quick game against them. They found the rules difficult to master! The trips were marvellous: visiting South African schools was like travelling 30 years back in time from Winchester. T Who were the main personalities? J The star runner was probably Edward Matthews (K, 91-96)), nicknamed ‘God’. Mark Best (D, 93-98) was brilliant on the last leg of any relay; he also reached the final of the men’s 1500m at English Schools – I had to pay £4 to watch him! Phil Killingley (G, 93-98) was a solid athlete and conscientious in training. Alex Cheyne (I, 94-99) raced in the 2000m South of England championship at Crystal Palace; his parents owned a race-horse who was running on the same day, and they chose to watch the horse instead! Edward Barnett (H, 92-97) was really impressive because he ran despite having chronic asthma. Kit Tuke (H, 90-95) was bit of a wide boy, and invaluable in keeping the team’s morale up with a witty line. Michael Boucher (H, 92-97) made amazing progress: he came to the school as tubby little boy, but ended up as team captain, and later a 2hr24min or so London Marathon runner. Alastair Tucker (D, 90-95) was the brains of the team, always telling us the latest research into training methods. And then James Hogan (F, 98-03), The Trusty Servant son of an Olympic hurdler, Aston McNeilly (H, 90-95), Nick Gribbon (I, 92-97)… it’s terrible not to be able to mention everybody, but those are the boys I can remember. T What brought the golden era to its close? J Other schools started getting a lot more serious, taking sports scholars for example. And the authorities at Win Coll gradually clamped down on the evening runs, eventually banning them completely. T What is the current state of tolling at Win Coll? J There are still lots of really The PE Centre 60 Years on fantastic boys who run, but their main sporting commitment lies elsewhere. The ball sports are much more dominant than I remember. But the Steeplechās are still a big fixture in the school’s calendar: participation has actually been better in recent years. I’m sure it could explode again, if the right boys got enthused. College got very passionate about tolling under Alastair Land (Master-in-College, 03-12); he used to get out with them. But perhaps our approach at the moment is more ‘running for everybody’. Win Coll is embarking on probably the most comprehensive development plan the School has had since its foundation, the Kingsgate Park Project. This will involve the construction of the new Sports Centre and the demolition of the current PE Centre, now 60 years old. This provides an excuse to retrieve a TS article from 1969: 12