LADIES ECCA NATIONAL CROSS-COUNTRY CHAMPS
Wollaton Park, Nottingham, 25 February 2017
” A Bridge too far…”
Author: Charlie Dickinson
Photo Credit: Sally Underhill
For many, the National is the climax of the cross country season, the race they train for and work towards all year. For the Belles, after a very encouraging and well supported season, it was perhaps a ‘Bridge too Far’. Injuries and illness have at last taken their toll with three stress fractures, calf injuries, chest infections and the usual persistent colds and flu, we should be so grateful to the small team who made such an effort to travel and who all ran well.
It was a hard day, the trains were overbooked and packed with several having to stand. The course was not at its best with several boggy areas and the usual fast grassland soft and muddy. The weather was overcast and grey although thankfully apart from a little drizzle, the promise of rain didn’t materialise.
The team all came with a cheerful positive attitude with Sally Underhill taking a break from her Wedding preparations, ahead of our four. Sally kept going well even moving through on the second lap despite a really painfully bruised big toe. (Michael; you had better not step on it when you practice your dance routine).
Next was Lizzie Goldie-Scott, not too far behind, suffering from the after effects of a cold and losing a little ground near the end, but still a very good effort. Then Fiona Maddocks, never afraid to take on the big events and looking stronger throughout the race, she very nearly caught Lizzie at the end finishing just two places further back.
Megan Bailey completed the scoring four just like a year ago running her usual strong reliable race finishing well within the first half of the huge field. Megan has been a wonderful asset to the team again this year missing only a couple of races all season. So too has Helen White and also Sarah MacKelvey who was the only one who ran in all four league races. They are the all important backbone of the team, and they are hugely influential in creating the terrific team spirit the Belles have had this season.
Good support on the day too, and thanks to Jojo Rhodes, Sophie Harris (on crutches) taking photos, Matt Welsh, Alex Mills and Michael Dunglass. You all help make it an enjoyable day.
1. J. Judd (Chelmsford) 33.39, 2. L.Small (AFD) 33.43, 3. C. Duck (Leeds) 33.45,…
185. S. Underhill 35.50, 272. L. Goldie-Scott 37.57, 274. F. Maddocks 38.05, 329. M. Bailey 39.14. 788 ran.
1. AFD 22, 2. Charnwood AC 107, 3. Highgate H 154, … 37. Belgrave 1060. 93 teams finished.