One of the most feared events in the club calendar is the annual cross country in December. For many years this has been held at Epperstone using a course devised by John Cummins (a man always ready for a challenge), but in 2012 we will be trying out a new course at Halam.
view a map of the new course please click on map
Instead of having to do (up to) four laps, the new course consists of only two circuits, one long and one shorter. The difference stops there, the rest is all too familiar to those runners who have faithfully taken part over the years. The terraine is equally hilly and (especially after prolonged rain) likely to be just as muddy, especially in some areas where the water is slow to drain off. An energy sapping, hard working (but rewarding) challenge is guaranteed for all.
To be fair to runners of all abilities,
the race will be handicapped, thereby allowing everyone an equal chance
of winning. Of course as we all know this is virtually impossible to
achieve, but it does help to make the race more interesting.
One thing that can be guaranteed is that
well as fighting against what will undoubtedly be a tough course, the
elements can also make
life even more difficult. If it is cold or icy
parts of the course will be slippery and possibly trecherous. If on
other hand we get prolonged winter rain then the pathways will
invariably become muddy making it difficult to keep on your feet
(you'll also end up with several pounds of mud stuck to your running
be fair though we have in the past occasionally had mild weather with
sun trying to peep through, but the chances of that this year are very
Although some runners are obscessed with time, really just finishing such a course is an achievement. In particular you have to admire those competitors who come back year after year to do it, irrespective of the weather.
the run is over we do then have something much easier and
certainly more relaxing to look forward to - SRC's Christmas meal in
the evening. Together this is surely two good reasons for joining the
Race Report December 2012
The weather was surprisingly mild and dry, but the ravaging rain from previous weeks had taken its toll on the course making it muddy (boggy even in one section) and slippery; moreover after several pairs of running shoes had been round the first lap, concurrent parts of the second lap were even worse. We are pleased to report that there were no casualties, unless you count exhaustion!!
The winners of the 2012 race were: Alex
Hughes and Katy Simpson
the new course