GALA Harriers have been in action as far south as Birmingham and to snowy Irvine during the past two weeks – as well as closer to home in Lasswade, with some respectable results as the cross country season comes to its end.
Dianne Lauder has represented both her district and country through Scottish Police for a few seasons now and her most recent selection took her to Cofton Park in Birmingham for the McCain Cross Country series, which is both an international and UK inter-district event. Over a testing course among 261 female athletes from all over the UK, Dianne contributed well to the fifth place out of 25 that the East of Scotland senior women achieved. Her 63rd position in 31min 7sec ensured that the East team were the top Scottish women’s entry.
Next day, the Lasswade 10-mile race attracted almost 400 runners.
Four intrepid male Harriers brought home a sixth placing for the club out of 17, with strong and steady runs from Fergus Johnston (61.52), Calum Stewart (64.46), Colin McCall (65.25) and Sinclair Hill (65.30). For the women, Carole Fortune put in a very respectable time of 75.53 to finish just outside the top half.
And just last weekend, with the unwelcome return of the white stuff, Scottish secondary school athletes travelled to Irvine for the inter-school cross country championships.
Some Harriers were representing their schools and despite the chilly and uninviting conditions, pulled out some respectable performances. Paul Henney running in the boys 14-15 age group over 4,000m finished 18th out of 82 in 16.29; Isla King in the girls’ 15-17s was 23rd out of 54 in 19.25 over the same distance; and Rowan Marr ended 27th out of 67 in 20.20 over 5,000m in the boys’ 15-17 age group.
Harriers take part in the Deerstalker and Mighty Deerstalker at Traquair on Saturday, and the Alloa Half Marathon the following day.