A small group of 12 athletes entered last weekends inaugural National Short Course Cross Country Championship races for u15 and u17 athletes which took place at Bellahouston Park,Glasgow. Traditionally the Short Course has been a senior event ran over a 4k course but this year Scottish Athletics introduced an u15 2k race and an u17 3k race.
In the u15 girls race young Katie McAlpine was the sole entrant. Katie is a multi-eventer and is using the cross country season as a base for her endurance training. In a tough race she completed the course in 10:29 coming home in 47th position.
The u15 boys saw 6 Seaforth athletes entered in a field of 68 runners. After a fast race first home for Seaforth was Fraser Stirling in 6th (6:36) followed by Lewis Ross 17th (6:51), Rhys Sim 27th (6:59), Callum Meldrum 45th (7:39), Euan McIntyre 47th (7:51) and Cameron Hay 58th (8:16). The first 3 boys home made Seaforth history by winning the team bronze medal coming in behind Fife AC and VP- Glasgow. This was the first Seaforth team medal at a National cross country event since 1999.
Next up was the u17 women’s race where Seaforth had 3 athletes entered in the starting line up of 35 runners. After a fast and hard fought race Kirstin Oakley led the team home in an excellent 2nd (10:49) place to win the silver medal, she was followed by Lisa Rennie 19th (12:23) and Rachael King 22nd (12:58). This team then made their own bit of Seaforth history, with the club having waited since 1999 for a team medal at a National cross country event they found themselves in the position of having won not 1 but 2 at the same event with the u17 women also taking team bronze. This is a testament to the hard work being done at the club by coach Alan Sprang as he develops his middle distance squad into a group who will regularly be competing for medals at this level.
The last race where Seaforth was represented was the u17 mens race with 2 athletes running in the field of 54 runners. James Pettigrew was the first Seaforth athlete in 15th (9:56) and Matthew Brawley was 30th (10:42)
Next up for the cross country team is the Ayrshire Cross Country Championships which take place at Irvine Beach Park on Saturday 16 November. After that a small group of athletes will head south to compete on Saturday 23 November in the McCain Cross Challenge race at Sefton Park, Liverpool which is also the European Cross Country trials and is sure to attract a large field.