This Saturday was the Canterbury Cross Country Champs held out at Halswell Quarry, a familiar place for us Christchurch Orienteers! This time I wasnt there for Orienteering though, just 6 x 2km laps of the flat part making up a traditional 12km Cross Country. It was hard work!
I got into the lead group right from the get go and stuck with them for most of the first lap. Eventually they group ahead of me was going a little bit too fast for me and I let them run ahead. I probably had my best lap about lap 3 and hunted down two people ahead of me passing them both quickly and efficiently. One of those ahead that I passed lost his shoe and was running in bare feet, but that’s the way racing goes…take no prisoners! As the race got on I started to slack a bit and the distance to second place which was closing suddenly increased again and the runners behind me were beginning to get closer!
I had to dig deep around the last two laps and managed to stay ahead of a fast charging Graham Bee, Carsten Joergenson and Marty Lukes to take 3rd place. About ten times better than I expected! I felt comfortable most of the race and now I have an idea of what 12km Cross Country is like I’ll be back again in two weeks time for the National Champs…in Red and Black. Not quite as good as Blue and Gold, or Marron but the surely the next best thing!