A week ago today (Friday 6th March) 287 enthused children descended on Wilton Lodge Park to compete in the 9th annual Teviotdale Harriers Primary & High School Cross Country Championships. The weather was on the Harriers side after the event was forced to rescheduled due to the endless wind and rain over the past weeks, but the morning of the 6th there was a glimmer of sun and gentle breeze, perfect conditions to tackle the 1850m Wilton Lodge Park course.
Course set out, marshals placed, primary 6 & 7 girls lined up at the start, it was time for the first race to get underway. The welcome sound of the whistle unleashed the eager 142 girls into the challenging cross-country trail which weaved it way through the beautiful park Hawick has to offer. The highly competitive field jostled for position over the first few hundred meters before settling down into the race. Over the first half of the race all pupils were tightly bunched together, however it was pupils from Trinity, Denholm & Drumlanrig who looked to stretch away from the field and create a smaller group fighting for the top spots. As the race developed it was Trinity duo Millie Scott and Emily Hush who jostled for the gold medal spot with the Denholm trio of Emily Robinson, Hannah Craig and Charlotte Robinson closely behind. With little under 200m to go Scott of Trinity made the last push for the finish line and was able to claim Gold for Trinity School. Emily Hush finished strongly in the silver medal position with Emily Robison wining the bronze after a spectacular sprint with her Denholm School team mates. Millie Scott (Trinity) finishing time was a superb 8:49minutes, 2nd Emily Hush (Trinity) 8:51 and 3rd Emily Robinson (Trinity) 9:07minutes.
Shortly after all the girls had completed the gruelling course it was the chance for the boys of primary 6 and 7 to excel themselves over the same distance. As with the girls race the 124 boys from 7 schools within the Hawick region donned their trainers and took their marks. The boys quickly gathered speed into the first bend being cheered on by the girls who had recovered from their exertions. It was Taylor Watson, Seth Elliot, Josh Wight and Dion Law who emerged as the front group after the first quarter mile and no one was willing the take their foot of the gas with the prizes on offer. However, Drumlanrig pupils Law and Wight began to work with each other and on the short climb towards the mid-way point made a decisive break. Dion had an extremely strong sprint to secure gold for Drumlanrig in a time of 7.56minutes, Josh Wight just behind in 2nd 8:00 and Seth Elliot of Denholm 3rd 8:09.
To conclude with the Primary School event the presentation was held at the iconic bandstand with all school parties being greatly praised for the effort and commitment on the day.
The winners of the girl team prizes were Trinity, the five counters were Millie Scott, Emily Hush, Niamh Dickson, Carra Mcleod and Rose McCluskey.
Drumlanrig were to secure the boys team prize with Dion Law, Josh Wight, Liam Gourlay, Lewis Cook and Reilly Lambert.
The combined team prize also returned to Drumlanrig School with the boy’s names mentioned above and also Mackenzie Grudge, Bethany Brown, Rowan Tully, Sarah Mcleod, Tamzin Yule.
In the third and final race of the day, it was the turn of the 21 High School kids that had put their name down to compete in the 2020 S1 & S2 Cross Country Championship. Although numbers were down on previous years the runners who took part were of the highest of standards. The combined races made for an exciting start, Boyd Hughes forcing the pace, Irvine Welsh hot on his heels with Charles Mckay settling down in the bronze medal position. In the girls race it was very tight for the top spots with Ava Hughes, Jessica Smith, Ellie Benstead, Chelsey Aitkens and Leah Brown all grouped together. As the High School Championship headed towards the later stages of the race Irvine Welsh (a previous winner) overtook Boyd Hughes and darted his way up the riverside finishing 1st in a time of 7:10. B. Hughes held on for 2nd 8:10 with a fast finishing Charles Mckay 3rd 8:17.
In the girls race it was another previous winner Ava Hughes who finished strongly in 1st 8:22, 2nd Jessica Smith 8:31 & 3rd Ellie Benstead 8:34.
Teviotdale Harriers would like to thank everyone who attended the 9th Primary Schools Cross Country Championship, including all volunteers who helped on the day, Hawick Waverly football club for the use of their changing rooms, the park green keepers for use of the changing pavilion, Keith Jonhson for use of gazebos and of course Live Borders Paul Scott who communicates with the schools to make it happen.
Teviotdale Harriers have junior training on a Wednesday at Teviot Church on St. George’s Lane 6pm, all kids from Primary 3 onwards welcome to come and have a try. We cater for all abilities with qualified coaches so please come along and join the fun.
The full list of results can be found below: