Ten of Greenock Glenpark Harriers youngsters turned out at Falkirk for the National cross country championships. For many it’s the most looked forward to and the most competitive event of the year. Instead of last year’s rain and mud, Callendar Park was bathed in sunshine with the ground firm underfoot – perfect conditions for the athletes and spectators alike.
The youngsters had been preparing for this race for months over the winter at Tower Hill, and their hard work paid off with all performing well on the day.
Proceedings got under way with the under 13 girls 3.1km race, and Ruby McGill got her pacing spot on. After a cautious start she moved steadily through from 80th early on to finish in 43rd place in the large field. Special mention to her team mates Katie Johnson and Francesca McKay who were both making their debut in a national event. Katie who was doubtful with a foot injury ran through the pain to finish midway up the field. Francesca who has been showing a marked improvement in training, produced that recent good form on the day.
Jude Dolan was the Harriers leading under 13 boy with an excellent run, finishing ahead of his team mate Cameron Patton, followed by Alex Wiseman who produced a blistering turn of pace down the last 100m to hold off two challengers.
The under 15 boys were tested over 4.1km, and Harry McGill produced his best run of the season to finish 20th, an improvement of 40 places on 2017. Ewan Ferguson had been battling a heavy cold all week, and he did well just to make the start line, even so he still managed to better his placing from last year. Shaun Wiseman didn’t let his very limited cross country training this season put him off, as he turned out an excellent display.
The final runner was Ryan Brown, another returning after a bout of flu. This was a big step up in distance for Ryan, but it was a determined performance over the hilly course, to show a marked improvement from the Renfrewshire Road Race just a few weeks earlier.
Results 3.1km: Ruby McGill 14.08, Katie Johnson 15.23, Francesca McKay 17.41 3.1km: Jude Dolan 13.07, Cameron Patton 13.52, Alex Wiseman 15.46 4.1km: Harry McGill 14.53, Ewan Ferguson 16.59, Shaun Wiseman 17.55 : 6km: Ryan Brown 25.30.