This winter season, one Belper Harrier in particular had more reason to celebrate than many others. Chris Jordan (who has been in the club less than two years) came 2nd in his age category (MV40) at the North Midlands Cross Country league (NMCCL). This league operates alongside the local BDL league but it’s easy to race both (as Chris unquestionably does!) as BDL’s are Sunday’s and these are Saturdays. North Mids races are held across the East Midlands and many of them are local. They are a slightly different format in that there are separate races for males and females and the courses are slightly longer – the mens is typically 10km.
Chris has done a great write up – so have a read through and see why this is probably the best form of winter training you can get to boost your summer performances.
The North Midlands Cross-Country League was founded in 1946. Some notable runners have been associated with the League. Jack Buckner ran at all age levels in the league and went on to be European 5000m. Champion. David Moorcroft competed in the League for a period and later became World Record Holder at 5000m. The league is a good standard and is open to all aspiring club runners. This season (2015/2016) saw a decent turnout of Belper Harriers over the 4 races.
Senior Men: Chris Jordan, Simon Edwards, Andy Paisley, Tim Boursnell, Len Foulk, Malcolm Weir, Ben Rhodes
Senior Ladies: Meg McHarg
Race 1 Markeaton took place on a dry, sunny day and saw the biggest turnout of belper runners with 3 laps of Markeaton Park.
Race 2 was at Glebe Park, Corby, in torrential wind and rain. A nice, challenging, undulating woodland course in difficult conditions.
Race 3 took place at Shipley Park, again a sunny, dry day and saw a decent harrier turnout.
Race 4 finished the season at Woolaton Parkm, again on a sunny, dry day.
One of the things I really like about the North Mids is the fact that you get to run in the same race as some of the country’s finest athletes, it’s a bit like Belper Town playing against Man Utd in the FA cup! Also, the races are slightly longer than a BDL, meaning more of a steady pace! What’s more, there are league trophies for all age categories too, meaning, there is a chance of some silverware even if you don’t podium in any individual race. Consistency is KEY! So come and give it a try. It will certainly add some strength to your winter training!
Simon and myself took part in all 4 races. It would be nice to get a bigger turnout of harriers next year, especially for the ladies. It’s such a great event and always nice to see familiar faces from our club and others.