A BRIGHT, breezy but chilly morning greeted the 251 runners who travelled to Lauder on Sunday for the inaugural race of the Borders Winter Cross Country series.
Hills, burn crossings, mud, slippery climbs and downhills welcomed the 82 junior and 169 senior runners in the first of the six-event programme from November to February.
Gala Harriers’ youngsters acquitted themselves well. Leading home the junior field were Thomas Otton (10 minutes 51 seconds) followed by local lad Joe Agnew (11.17) who just saw off James Mercer (11.20) running well to take third, with Jamie Logan (11.59) and Andrew Hogg (12.01) battling it out for fourth and fifth.
Katie Rourke finished as the third girl and second in her age category. Twenty-six other young Harriers took to the hills of bonnie Lauderdale.
Senior Harriers also ran well and the Gala contingent were led home by Fergus Johnston who was fifth in 27 minutes 04 seconds, with Graham Manczak (28.35) and Mark Bryson (29.33) in 12th and 16th.
Kirsten Maxwell stormed in as the first woman home in 31.57 with Fiona Dalgleish taking first place in her age category in 33.04. Also featuring highly in their age categories were Bob Marshall (2nd in class in 34.14) and Andrea Pogson, first in her category in 37.04, with hard-run efforts from 31 other Harriers. (All results on the Borders Winter series Cross country page via the Norham Running Club website).