Thursday 27 November 2014

British & Irish Masters Cross Country

22nd November 2014 - Wollaton Park, Nottingham

Results | Track on Strava

This was my 3rd time representing Scotland at the British & Irish Masters. Previous efforts were Dublin 2010 and Bellahouston, Glasgow 2011.  So this was my first time in the Over 50s race.

Friday was quite tiring with an epic coach journey down to Nottingham from Glasgow, arriving in the dark and pouring rain.  I checked into the Travelodge before heading out in the dark and rain to track down food and drink with several Clydesdale runners.

I had already started going down with the lurgy mid-week and woke in the night feeling grim with sore throat, so wasn't confident about the race.

The Scotland team convened at Wollaton park at 10am for pre-race photos.

Scotland Team Photo

My race started at 12:30pm

Start of M50-64 race

With 4 laps of a 2km course, I set out at conservative pace. After 300 metres, I'd passed all the Scottish runners except Stan Mackenzie and Peter Buchanan. I had to hold back a fraction to avoid passing any more runners, and settled in behind Peter. After maybe 500 metres, I passed Peter, and then focussed on closing the gap to Stan.  The gap didn't change much for the first 2 laps, and at the start of the 3rd lap I briefly passed Stan going up the hill, but he passed me straight back going down the other side.  After that I just plugged away, trying to hold position, whilst leaving something for a strong finish.  I did get passed by one Northern Irish runner, but don't remember too many other going by.

Chasing Stan Mackenzie (Peter Buchanan behind)

Strong finish
The 4-lap course at Wollaton Park:

The end result was I finished 2nd in the Scottish Team, 11th M50 overall, and we picked up Bronze team prize, the team being Stan, me, Peter and Ted Gourley.