What a difference a week makes! In stark contrast to the brilliant blue skies that accompanied this years Undulator race, a week earlier an intrepid group of 12 WRC members braved the driving rain to take part in the first of the BDL Cross Country League races. Run over about 5 miles, the race took place at Shipley Park, which is a classic cross country course that stages other league races as well as the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Cross Country Championships.
Now truth be told, we are probably never going to win the league, that title is fought over each year by a small group of the larger clubs, however, there is a great camaraderie amongst competitors, particularly when battling the elements, and because it’s a league event, everyone contributes. Wherever you finish, you are pushing someone else back a place. For example, our brilliant ladies finished 9thout of 12, just one point ahead of Kimberley! So well done to which of the two Emma’s or Ruth it was, who battled down the finishing straight to keep their noses in front of the runner just behind. Overall, our Men finished 7thand the Combined Team 9th, with notable performances from Andy, who in Elaine’s absence led by example as captain, to finish an impressive 30th, just besting Paul who appears like a sepia tinged memory of his former self for weekend BDLs and really must get out more. John Potter, also continued to demonstrate the effects of Monday night speed training and was our third scorer, with Mark and Bob, now happily over injuries once again creeping up the rankings. Simon, Dave, Stacy and Brian made up the rest of the team and of course all felt fully justified in wolfing down the energy replenishing banana cake at the end of the race.
So. fancy a go? If you’re someone who has said “um cross country, not for me, too hard, wet, muddy, competitive etc”, the next event is the tamest of the lot around the fields of Chaddesden Park. It also takes place on Remembrance Sunday and includes a moving tribute before the race. Get on down. 400 plus running folk can’t all be wrong!
If you’re still not convinced, just look at the fun these people are having on Matlock AC’s Facebook page.