Midland XC Report (31/01/2018)

Tony Phillips was in attendence at the Midland XC last saturday and sent us his thoughts:-

The Midland Cross Country Championships were held at Wollaton Park, Nottingham, last Saturday. There were some commendable performances by Tipton's senior men and women, the men won bronze medals and the women just missed out in fourth place.

The Wollaton Park course has become a familiar venue over recent years with championship events being held there. It provides a testing course with some steep gradients leading up to the Elizabethan Hall that stand on a hill , with the course winding round it. There are grassland stretches and paths, and after heavy rain there were areas of mud and surface water, that made the running experience a testing one.

The event involved the senior men running four laps, and the leaders soon went ahead of the field of about 500 runners, and at the end of the first lap the first three to finish the race had already opened a gap, with three Tipton runners in the following group, Joe Smith, Peter Brookes, and Stuart Hawkd close together in the teens, and Ian Williams close behind followed by Martin Williams in the 30's. Karl Welborn completed the scoring six around the 50 mark.

The next three laps saw little change in the positions. At the front Brecker from Stoke opened up a gap from Gray (Cambridge and Coleridge), and Hallam (Wreake and Soar Valley).

These three dominated the race, with Brecker a convincing winner. Gray and Hallam ran strongly but gaps opened on the lap.

The Tipton team counting six more or less kept their positions, with Joe Smith finishing the strongest in 10th place, with Peter Brookes losing some ground towards the end in 16th position, and Stuart Hawkes finishing the stronger in 17th position, only just 10 secs. behind. Meanwhile Ian Williams battled the conditions, but below his best compared with his recent standards, in 31st place, just beating Martin Williams who made up ground to finish 33rd only 5 secs. down on Ian.

Karl Welborn completed the counting six in 52nd place after a consistently hard run race, in which he held his own after the opening lap. Stephen Corbishley, 63rd, Richard White, 77th, Jonathon Carter, 79th, Tom Holden, 80th, Ben Carrington, 85th, all competed strongly, to finish in the first hundred.

Result: 1. Notts.AC. 116 points, 2. Birchfield Harriers 128, 3. TIPTON HARRIERS 159 . 4. OWLS Leicester 450 38 teams completed.

Tipton's senior women competed well to finish fourth in the team event. Over the hard course Amie Williams ran very well and after some hard efforts on the course finished 12th, Susannah Davies, 37th, Catherine Holden, 41st, and Amy Hadley, 47th, were the counting four, each with hard running over the challenging course. Result: 1. Charnwood 30 points; 2. Bristol and West 75; 3. Notts.AC 111; 4. TIPTON HARRIERS 137; 5.Birchfield H. 140; 6. Birmingham R & TC 170.

Of the young age groups the only performance of note was in the Boys U15 Event, the team finishing 12th with 246 points. The counters were Lyndon Hunt, 41st, Haydn Watson, 50th, Thomas Bentley, 67th and Jack, 88th. Where were the other young age groups?