Rotherby Lodge Farm was the local venue for the Leicestershire County Cross Country Championships on Saturday 6 January 2018. The earlier rain and slippery mud made this an extremely challenging course. Natalie Teece had a great race amongst the top county cross country runners to win a bronze medal in the Masters category. The ladies masters (6K) fielded a full team and achieved a credible 5th place out of 11 teams; Natalie Teece (29:48 3rd), Vicki Lowe (35:08 26th), Sharon Eshelby (36.40 33rd) and Lou Houghton (37.48 37th).
Alan Thompson led the Striders Masters Men in the 10K (52:19 20th), followed by Paul Geeson (59:25 50th) and Ian Howe (60:22 52nd).
A number of junior Striders also ran, putting in creditable performances:
U13 girls (3K) – Georgie W 18:42, Zoe N 19:00, Izabella R 19:58, Lucy J 20:26, Milly C 22:06
U15 girls (4K) – Amy J 24:36
U15 boys (4K) – Joe B 18:17
For those who enjoyed the terrain, the Frisby Fun Run on 14th April uses some of the same course but is considerably shorter!
* Interested in entering races? Not sure what you need to do?
Sometimes races need to be entered in advance, normally via an online form (but not always). Other races can be entered on the day as well, but may cost a little extra. Most races involve safety pinning your numbers on before the race. The League races often have chip timing too, which marry up to your race number.
Terrain and distances vary, but most races follow similar courses to previous seasons. Ask other Striders if they remember the course. An ‘oooh watch out for the hill at mile 4’ can be useful 🙂 Wear the club vest or t-shirt to get those Strider Cup points and most of all have fun!
A couple of days before Christmas a group of Striders travelled to Gaddesby for the Gaddesby Gallop, a 5 and a half mile X-country race with a number of stiles, a dew pond and a drainage pipe to negotiate, and the mild wet weather had made it very muddy .
In a record field of 195, first back for the club showing his off road skills was Michael Atton in 23rd place in 40.23, followed by Ian Drage in 25th 41.03, then Paul Geeson 43.10, Darren Glover 44.31, John Houghton 44.47. Next in her first race for the club was Vicki Hurrell 45.52, Dan Giblett 52.32, Daniel Howley 52.32, Ross Jackson 53.36, Lou Houghton 53.52, Sarah Lawrence 60.47, Debs and Jon Wilson ran together in 67.08, Kaye Mead 68.44 .
In the new year a few striders travelled to Leicester for the 3rd round of the Leicester 5k Winter Series.
First back in 4th was Luke Eggleston in 18min 18, then in 6th and first lady was Natalie Teece in 19.57, followed in 7th by Matt Gayton in 20.28, then Liz Goodbourn first vet 50 lady in 24.53.
On the 31st of December, I made my way over to Huncote to take part in the annual “back to basics” Huncote Hash cross country race. I was a solo Strider this year, joining 343 other runners for the 6.5 mile run. Heavy rain the previous day ensured a particular wet and muddy run, brilliant conditions for a fun XC. The course itself started off with a short loop through the local woodland, before heading out toward Croft Hill. I managed to conquer the hill, with my mum waiting at the top to shout some encouraging support and snap some good pictures. The route then descended back down the other side of the hill before making back towards Huncote, wading through a waist deep stream before attempting a sprint finish.
I managed to finish in 146th place in 1:03:36 before receiving my finishers soup and bread roll. As only my 2nd ever XC race I thoroughly enjoyed this. It is an incredibly well organised event with lots of support from the locals, without which there’s no chance I would have made it over that hill!