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2018 Yorkshire Veterans Cross Country Champs


A VIEW FROM THE REAR - David Yeomans

Race report 40th Yorkshire Veterans Cross Country Champs. at Cleckheaton 4th March 2018

As only Wetherby runner I have to do it!

Early Sunday morning set off out into "Beast from East" to start the "Treck to Cleck" having received E mail from organisers that course was safe to race.

The course was 9.4.k over 5 laps of what used to be pitch and put but now derelict land. Conditions best described as treacherous. Snow covered tree roots and where there was no snow it was slippery slush with the rest deep cloying mud. One big hill to be climbed 5 times and a stream cleared 10 times

My days of podium finishes are long past and it is now more often a view from the rear so there is plenty of time to think whilst running. Along with the usual "What the hell am I doing here?" thought, today I think of Spenborough AC and what a marvellous job they had done in marking ourt the twisting course with flags and tapes and making sure we had somewhere to run after last weeks awful weather.I reflected on the good banter that is exchanged between runners at the back of the field and yet when I slipped down it was two runners who were lapping me that took time out to make sure I was ok before they disappered into the distance. What a great sport this is.

At the end of lap 4 when the thought of quitting enters my head I suddenly feel a great responsibility to my Club. Today I am the only representative of the mighty O. I feel I must not let them down. Why does it matter? Well six months ago I turned up at Wednesday training expecting to be told sorry sod off you are too old. None of this for I was made to feel really welcome, and over the weeks even useful for the Club at the Peco's. It is because of Wetherby Runners that I have a purpose in life again, I cannot wait for Wednesday night training, I have races planned all summer and PB's to better. I have met new colleagues who make running fun, have taught me how to use Facebook, messenger and even mended my old bike (thanks Chris). My wife says it is like I am 20 years younger in attitude. Without really knowing it the members of Wetherby Runners have changed my life and that is the reason I cannot let them down now. Quitting thoughts expelled I go on and before long the finishing line appears. A quick (ish) sprint to the the end and the adrenaline rush arrives having completed the race and even managed to be ahead of some others as well as quite a few who dropped out.

Was it all worth it?

Top 10 finish on age group 65-70 in a County Championship - got to be happy with that
New PB - (never run 9.4k race before)
First Wetherby runner home (be surprised if this ever happens again)
Ok a slowish time but surely this should boost my handicap by at least 20 minutes for the Mulgrave Castle run!!

Yes it was worth it for all those reasons and just for the great feeling you get at the end of the race.