For the second instalment of the North Midlands Cross Country we headed to Wicksteed Park in Kettering.
In wet conditions the women’s race set off following a one-minute silence for the two Aldershot girls and a former official of the North Midlands League. In a repeat of the Derby Race, Amber Reed provided another fast start and was closely marshalled by Chloe Bird who managed to pull ahead of Amber to finish 7th. Amber finished twenty seconds behind in 10th place and both remain as first and second counters for Nottingham University. Following in behind Amber and Chloe, Megan Gildea produced an indefatigable run to finish 14th. The combined efforts of the women’s team meant they finished second on the day, only losing to Notts AC on countback. Our next two finishers, Emily Starman and Charlotte Richardson both showed substantial improvements in their placings compared to the Derby race. Emily finished 43rd and Charlotte finished 50th. That is an 11 place and a 25 place improvement respectively!
For the men’s race we welcomed some debutants to the cross country scene. Calum Duck, Chris Fielding, Rob Middlewick and Chris James all turned out for the first time but our heartless president Jack Millar showed no mercy by speeding off into the front pack almost instantly. Unlike our last League race, Tom McGuinness chose not to take on Jack and provided a more reserved start. Millar was rewarded with a second place finish meaning he continues his run on the podium. Tom followed closely behind in sixth with another strong run.
Third counter for the University was Daniel Leng. A decent 67 second final 400 meters meant that he finished in 32 place. However, not too far behind Rob Middlewick produced a tremendous debut run. Rob had persistently stuck with Daniel throughout the race and had only slightly dropped off towards the finish meaning he completed the course in 38th place. Chris Fielding also provided another eye catching debut performance outsprinting Beeston AC’s fell running champion and fellow university runner George Russell to finish 61st. Calum Duck was also not too far behind in 68th place and rounding off the debut performances was Chris James finishing in the top half of the field in 90th place. Allan Wilson and Matthew Grammatico then concluded an impressive team third place for the men by finishing 151st and 153rd respectively.
Kettering provided yet another great team performance and some outstanding individual performances. Who’s ready for East Mids XC?