Saturday, February 22, saw the culmination of the cross country season for most Scottish club runners – the Scottish National cross country Championships, held at Callendar Park in Falkirk.
With competitors pitching tents in front of Callendar House, the scene was set for a series of 10 races covering junior and senior age groups with hundreds of entries in each race.
The mud was deep and sticky and made it particularly challenging to gain any traction, particularly on the uphill and downhill sections.
However, there was plenty of support during each race, with the voices of locals and competitors spurring people on over the difficult areas of the course.
Representing Linlithgow AC, Andrew Fischbacher had the best result of the day to finish 25th in the under-17 men’s race, covering the 6.4km course in a time of 25:27.
In the under 13 boys’ race, David Featherstone finished 129th in 16:32, over a distance of 3.2km.
Next up was the senior women’s race, over a distance of 8km.
Frances Wood finished 165th in a time of 39:13, Hilary Stocks was 190th in 40:52 and Nadine McAlpine was 206th in 41:45.
It was a baptism of fire for Frances and Nadine who were both running their first ever cross country race.
The final event of the day was the senior men’s race, held over a distance of 12km.
With over 566 competitors, the LAC team was pleased to finish in a respectable 35th position.
Individual results are as follows: 143rd John Redding, 324th David Marshall, 376 Scott Hyslop, 390 Angus Gallie, 436 Gerry McArdle, 478 Matt Richardson, 522 Brian Couper, 525 Bryan Grome, 551 Graeme Burrows.
The Devilla 15km race took place on a wet and windy Sunday morning.
Unfortunately there were some problems with the course markings which resulted in the route being shortened to 12.8km and caused confusion with the pacing for runners.
First to finish for Linlithgow AC was Colin McCluskie in ninth place with a time of 50:17. Doug Robertson was 21st in a time of 52:47, Bryan Grome was 268th in 1:08:39, and Jodie Smith was 447th in 1:23:28
At Falkirk parkrun, Malcolm Hughes finished in 17th position in a time of 21:08.