East District Cross Country Relay Champs – 09/10/2021

The first of this season’s cross country races took place at the weekend in Galashiels with the annual East District XC Relays last held in 2019 due to the pandemic. It was great to see so many athletes and clubs participating over a challenging hilly course in the border’s countryside.

Lasswade AC initially had eleven teams entered for the event over all age groups, however there were a number of withdrawals due to injury and Covid 19 so ended up with eight teams on the day.

The first event to get underway was the young females and our u13 girl Isla Taylor got the team of to a great start finishing the first leg in 4th place. U15 Eloise Scott was our second leg runner and she had a strong run to hand over to our final leg runner u17 Olivia Meikle in 8th place. Olivia ran well on the final leg to pull back one place and bring the team home in 7th place, a great start to the day’s events.

The next race was the young males and we had three teams, although one was incomplete. Our u13 first leg runners were Jonathan MacQueen, Ruairidh Wood and Lauchie Welsh. All the boys ran well with Jonathan leading home in 20th, not too far behind was Ruairdh in 25th followed closely by Lauchie in 28th. Our u15 boys were Rowan Taylor, Cian Murray and Will Heatlie with Rowan having a fine run to move the first team up to 11th. Cian was next home with a good run in 27th and one of our new athletes Will had a solid run to finish in 30th. We only had two under 17 runners, Alastair Scott and Rory Scott with both boys having good runs their lap times were within a couple of seconds of each other. Their teams finished in 14th and 22nd place respectively.

The ladies race was next and Lasswade AC had finished 3rd in this event the last time it was held in 2019 albeit with a slightly different team. This year we had two teams  and hoped our girls could prevent Edinburgh University who had a number of good teams getting a clean sweep.  We were not to be disappointed with first leg runner Amy Smith in her first race for a number of years having a good run to hand over in 7th place to U23 GB international Sarah Tait who showed her class to put in the fastest lap of the day and move us up to 3rd place and hand over to final leg runner Amy Frankland.  We could see Amy on the hills in the distance and she looked like she was moving well and closing in on the athletes in front of her. As the athletes approached the finish and came into the last field Amy Frankland was leading from Cera Gemmell of Edinburgh University. A fantastic race and great result for Lasswade AC to win from Edinburgh University who were 2nd, 3rd,  4th  and 5th. Our other ladies team was led off by Hannah Little who ran well to hand over in 31st place to Cathy Dickson who had a great run to pull us up to 22nd place.  Debra Urquhart wass on the final leg and in her first race for a few years ran well to bring the team in 24th place.

Senior Ladies East District Cross Country Relay Champions 2021 – Amy Smith, Sarah Tait and Amy Frankland

The final event of the day was the men and Lasswade AC had two teams. On the first leg Christian Graham made his intentions clear from the start and went straight to the lead closely followed by another Lasswade AC athlete Harry Henriksen who was running for Edinburgh University.

Harry on his way to 2nd on the first leg with the fastest lap of the day for an U20

It was great to see Christian and Harry leading the race with Christian first home closely followed by Harry. Martin Gore was our next runner and ran well over the 4k course to keep us in the top 10 and hand over in 7th place to our 3rd leg runner David Woods. David a newer member was running for Lasswade AC for the first time and ran well to keep us just outside the top 10 in 11th place. Our final leg runner Euan Hood had a solid run on the final leg to bring us home in 12th place. Our other men’s team was initially going to be all masters but unfortunately we had a few late withdrawals so it became a mixed team. Andrew McGlone led the team off and declared that it was a tough course coming home in 35th and handing over to Scott Dickson. Scott had a good run to move us up a couple of places to 33rd. Greg Louden was next off and running very well to move up seven places to 26th.  Our final leg runner was Sean Hadden who had a solid run to finish in 27th place.

Christian leading at the end of the first leg!

A great day’s athletics with fine performances from our athletes with some amongst the fastest times of the day. The highlight has to be our ladies win.

Congratulations to everyone on their performances.

Thanks for all your help on the day especially Stuart Meikle for arriving early and helping us erect the tent,  Scott and Cathy Dickson for taking it away to dry it and to all the officials and volunteers, especially Linden, who make these events happen.

Linden busy recording all of the finishers

See you all at the National Relays!

Kirk and Linda

Photo’s Courtesy of Neil Renton

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