Cross Country - A Personal View (18/02/2014)

Last week the cross country league season for senior men ended at Cheltenham with Tipton Harriers finishing third in the Birmingham and District Cross country League Div.1, with Loughborough University champions and Birmingham University runners up. Ian Rawlinson had his best run of the season with an outstanding run in third spot, with Ben Gamble and Matt Granger also having strong performances to finish 10th and 11th, followed closely by Ian Williams,16th, and much improved junior Luke Vine 60th, and Adam Soley, 71st, completing the count. Non-counters included Mike Buntin - good to see him competing again, 78th, Dean Hill, 99th, and Matt Smith, 103rd, completing the turnout. Without full strength teams in the four races Tipton performed well with numerous runners turning out during the series, but never at full strength to beat the universities. The event was a useful lead into the next contest.

The National

The National Cross Country Championships take place this Saturday at Wollaton Park, Nottingham, where I am sure Mick Robinson of the local club Notts. A.C., who will be keen to take their first National title on home ground, will have selected a good testing course at a venue being used for the first time. The course will be a different one from that used for the Inter Counties event.

Tipton have the runners to win the senior men's event, or at least finish in the medals, providing all the best runners turn out. They have the chance to continue the high performance achievements over the years of Tipton runners, who have won 12 titles since 1969, when the club won its first National, but not since 2000, but they have been in the medals on a further 19 occasions. No other club can match this record, and many clubs and runners would give a lot to achieve getting in the medals.

So Tipton Harriers talented runners turn out on Saturday and return to winning ways, you will feel a sense of achievement and feel better for it, so make it a day to remember! Turn out, run your best, and take the chance to win the National - past Tipton teams who have reached this pinnacle will tell you how worthwhile it was to make the effort to turn out and perform on the day, make history, and achieve your personal goals.

Tony Phillips, Coaching Coordinator