Claire Joliffe reports on the Senior Ladies teams at the English National XC Relays on 03-NOV-2018.
Having left a rather chilly Bristol at 8.45 it was great to arrive at a dry, sunny, if a little blustery Berry hill, Mansfield for the English XC relay champs where the event has been held successfully since 1989. Much to the delight of team manager Chris Elson, we had 9 fit willing and extremely able senior ladies ready to run the 3 x 3k undulating course of parkland and woods with a nasty energy sapping hill into the finish, the organisers had kindly highlighted any exposed tree roots through the wooded areas, very helpful for the mature team members!
Leg 1: Our A team was lead off by our ever improving Natalie Griffiths with a fab time of 10.15 in 23rd position, B team had club captain Ellen Harrison securing 45th place with 11.07 and C team had masters athlete Clare Jolliffe not far behind with 11.28 in 58th position, fabulous all 3 back safely. Please note the first leg is slightly shorter, due to the main start being at the bottom of the start slope.
Leg 2: All 3 of these athletes have recently returned to racing from injuries so it was fantastic to have them back competing. A team had Charlotte Taylor Green, happy to be stretching her legs again passing 17 people to put us in 6th position with a time of 10.16. B team with Hannah Pollock, who was determine to enjoy herself moved up to 33rd position in a time if 10.58, C team with Ana Duran, who admitted she started way too fast, got us into 45th place in 11.31. Amazing 6 ladies safely round the course.
Leg 3: Due to a late withdrawal Catie O’Donoghue stepped up to th A team and was feeling the pressure, she ran amazingly with a time of 11.09 to bring the ladies home in 13th position. Supervet Sarah Everitt also got bumped up a team level, running her usual reliable self in a time of 11.23 to bring the B team home in 31st position. Recent new signing, uni student Gaby Miles stepped into the C team at late notice and finished in 39th place with a time of 11.58.
Not a bad set of results, 3 teams in the top 40 out of 116 complete teams. Nobody got injured, the sun shone, we remembered to bring the tent back and dare I say it, we all enjoyed ourselves so much, we might be back next year.