2017 Cross Country Team Manager's Report
A new venue for this year's championships at Prestwold Hall, near Loughborough, provided some excellent courses with undulating terrain but mostly very firm underfoot and no steep slopes at all. Parking, which has been a problem in the past at Birmingham, was plentiful, although, for team managers, not very convenient as it was a fair trek to the tented area with two tents, flag and vests. However most of the athletes and parents approved of the new venue and the athletes seemed to enjoy the courses.
As in previous years I lost the services of several athletes after the entry deadline and unfortunately two of them were Lancashire champions, U17 Daniel Jones and Patrick Dever from the Senior Men's team which was already a relatively inexperienced one. However we finished complete teams in all the age groups including the Senior Men's 9 man team who placed second.
Although we didn't come away with any individual or team medals there were some fine performances and seven out of the ten teams placed in the top ten from around 40 counties. Before the event I thought the U17 men's team had a good chance of at least a bronze medal but losing Liverpool Pembroke and Sefton's Daniel Jones through illness seriously weakened a very good team and they finished in seventh place. Preston's Nathan Dunn, who always runs well in this event, finished in seventh place, just 12 seconds off an individual medal.
Other notable performances include Blackpool's Emily Japp who finished in 16th place in the Senior Women's race, Blackburn's Chris Arthur, 38th in the Senior Men's race and Ben Preddy, 20th for the U15 Boys.
As always, it was a very enjoyable day and I am very grateful for the commitment of the athletes and their parents, especially for the 11 athletes who made the journey from the Isle of Man.
Team Positions and Counters
U13 GIRLS 19th Team 68, 85, 86, 140
U17 MEN 7th Team 7, 48, 55, 90
U13 BOYS 9th Team 20, 53, 54, 82
U20 WOMEN 7th Team 34, 44, 58, 59
U15 GIRLS 25th Team 70, 95, 128, 144
U20 MEN 8th Team 36, 40, 57, 60
U15 BOYS 5th Team 20, 36, 53, 77
SEN WOMEN 8th Team 16, 36, 51, 60, 114, 126
U17 WOMEN 19th Team 67, 69, 81, 100
SEN MEN 7th Team 38, 50, 68, 85, 87, 89