Yorkshire Veterans Cross Country Championship 2017
Northern Racing College Doncaster 4th March 2017
On 4th March, Mike and I travelled to the Northern Racing College at Rossington Park, near Doncaster for me to take part in the 2017 Yorkshire Veterans Cross Country Championships.
We arrived early in drizzly weather conditions and after collecting my number, we jogged round the well-marked course. This consisted of one large and one small lap for the ladies race, the total distance being just over 5K. Heavy rain the previous day had resulted in parts of the course being waterlogged, including a narrow beck that had turned into a deep and wide channel. Other sections of the course were firm due to sandy ground, but were very uneven.
During the course of the morning, the weather changed from being damp, cool and drizzly to sunny and warm, with very little wind.
I was glad to have been round the course as I lined up for the start at 13:00, as I knew where the tricky sections were and was aware that there was a bottleneck almost straight after the start, where the runners had to go through an open gate.
The race started and in no time at all we were all heading towards the gate, where we all plunged through a muddy and waterlogged section before heading out onto part of the race course. At this point, a gradual downhill section led to a wood, where the course narrowed once more. On emerging from the wood, we ran towards the flooded beck and after crossing, began a gradual uphill to complete the first lap (glad to have had lots of practice crossing ditches in pack runs!).
I was pleased that the first lap was the longer one of the two and pushed on for the final small lap, which also involved crossing the flooded beck. I knew that once I got to the muddy section at the gate again, I only had approximately 400m to the finish and feeling very tired, with Mike cheering me on, I thought about the last 400m of a speedwork session and found a burst of speed for the finish.
I was delighted to find out that I had won the Championship in my category, finishing 13th overall from 92 ladies.
After a jog recovery, we made our way to the presentation area, where everyone was provided with complimentary coffee and biscuits, which was a very nice touch.
The whole event was very enjoyable, friendly and well organised.