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West District Cross Country Championships, Inverclyde.

08/12/2012

Whilst the rest of the club were spending their Saturday measuring themselves up for mince pies & mulled wine, Jim Buchanan represented DRC at the West District Cross Country Championships. In his own unique style Jim gives his take on the event as follows...

"The race was held on Ardgowan Estate, Inverkip (Greenock), with no competitor car access, so changing facilities were 3 miles away with a shuttle bus service to the course.

Initial sight of the course through the steamy bus window, suggested flat lush fecund agricultural acres, soft to foot, hand and cheek (depending upon running style)... how misplaced! Closer inspection revealed a variety of frozen green pasture, with deer, sheep and cow hoof print depressions, and droppings. That was half of the course, the other being better described as simple mud, but exhibiting fine degrees of depth, thaw and agitation from all the previous races.

Bang on 200 runners completed the senior men's race of a full 10k distance. I decided to treat the conditions with the unusual respect of a quiet start, mid pack gambolling for the first mile, then upping the pace to overtake as many as possible. By completion of mile four, ardent fever was on the wane, and it was a case of picking off one or two more. One last head to head ding-dong was successfully undertaken on the final run in, which completed an enjoyable festival of cross country".

Jim finished in 45th place in 40:59, (improving on his 2011 placing of 69th in the corresponding race). The winner was Derek Hawkins of Kilbarchan AAC in 33:55 with Cambuslang Harriers taking the team honours. In the senior womens' race, Elspeth Curran of Kilbarchan AAC took first place with Shettleston Harriers winning the team prize.

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