Saturday morning saw the #nuaxcultras board the train to Durham to take on past and present members of Durham University, as well as racing between ourselves. The course was an undulating mixed terrain race with plenty of mud. Covered in some questionable face paint, however, and the squad were raring for the challenge.
The women’s race was approximately 4km, with a strong field of runners and plenty of blue and red vests. It was a large group leading off, before team captain Lauren decided the pace was too slow and told Amy to go off and win the race, which she then did, smashing her previous best time around the course! Lauren also ran a cracking race, beating many of her former Durham mates (hisssss) and finishing a close 3rd. Coming in 7th, 8th and 9th overall were Shona, Erin and Rebecca respectively, showing a strong start to the season. Next in were the two Emilys, Oakshott followed by Athletics Captain Davis, finishing 12th and 13th with Emily D putting in a huge sprint finish to fend off a Durham athlete. Club Secretary Aoife finished 21st, whilst Vice President Alice somehow made it round in 22nd place despite having no functioning knees. Pihla was the final NUAXC member home, having gone 3.9km further than her normal race distance.
Now was the turn of the lads, taking on a 6km course which included heading up the “large slope” twice. NUAXC fresher Jack Douglas showed some great promise, leading the field out to the hill on the first lap of the woods. He went on to finish a respectable 2nd out of the Newcastle runners and 12th overall. But it was XC captain Chris Larkin who came through as the 1st NUAXC athlete, finishing 4th overall and hot on the tail of some of Durham’s fastest lads (if only there had been another large slope we’d have backed him for the win). 3rd and 4th for Newcastle were also new to the club, Sean and William finishing just five seconds apart and showing some quality even pacing. Social Secretary Toby managed to turn up both on time and not hungover for a change to come in 23rd and 5th for Newcastle. Next in was the ever speedy Sam with a respectable 26th in a strong field, and 6th NUAXC member home. 3rd year Brad and 1st year Luke had a good battle for 31st overall, with just nine seconds separating the pair, Brad just holding on long enough to be 7th from the club. The most experienced runner in the team, David, used his prior course knowledge to breeze past plenty of the field, arriving at the finish in 38th place on his fourth consecutive appeared at the race. An injured Alex hobbled home to complete the men’s squad, having taken a painful impact to his knee.
Another promising early season race for Team NUAXC as the X-Country fixtures start coming thick and fast over the winter months.
Last modified: 15th October 2019