VAA NEE Cross Country Championships, North Shields, Saturday, March 19, 2011

6K / 9K

Fiona Shenton

Cross country but not as we know it – beautiful sunny day, no mud and no hills! Women and men over 65 went first. Striders represented by yours truly and Nina. Nina was well up in the race despite having done Dent last weekend. Unfortunately she doesn’t appear in the results so I hope she will be able to supply a time? I was happy with 25:17 (although not quite so happy when those with Garmins pointed out that the course was well short of the advertised 6K!) Still good enough to be 2nd 50yr old gadgie.

In the mens 35-64 age group race (approx. 9K) we had Mike (37:04), Shaun (38:40) and Conrad (39:02). Mike took the silver in his V55 category. By my reckoning they should also have had a V50-54 team prize?? To be fair to the poor organisers their day started off badly when the school caretaker failed to turn up at the agreed time to open up Monkseaton High School as the race headquarters. Not all bad though as the Foxhunters pub right next to the course agreed to allow in the thirsty finishers to get results and medals.

Shaun adds …

I’m not at all sure we need to be fair to the organisers. How on earth they come up with this course as suitable for ‘cross-country’ is beyond me. Close to pancake-flat without any notable ‘features’ whatsoever. Running past peoples’ front lawns on a Saturday afternoon while they wash their cars and their sprogs kick footballs about. The only connection with the ‘country’ was that there was grass! How about something involving a hill? A moor? A riverbank? Would that be getting a bit close to a fell race? Possibly. But this course was just pitiful.

And our club appears throughout the results as “Elvert Stridders“. Nuff said.

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