It was a low-key weekend for athletes from Wolverhampton & Bilston AC, the calm before the storm, the quiet period before the cross country crescendo for all ages in the next couple of weeks. Athletes still found some opportunities to race and pull on the vest, in both colours.
The black vest made its team competition debut after emailed confirmation from the organisers that they were happy with us using the alternative kit as a single team travelled to Nottinghamshire to take part in the British Masters Cross Country Relays. A befits a national championship there was plenty of quality at the sharp end of the field with clubs making the long journeys from as far afield as Brighton and Glasgow for 4k, just shy of 2 miles, on a pancake flat course. The Wolves team of Dave Norman, who ran 13.13, Greg Asbury 11.31, Gareth Briggs 11.34, Pete Hood 13.29 and Ben Foster 11.08, finished in a total time of 1.00.55 to take 17thplace in the M35 age group and 7th in the Midlands Masters competition. Not a bad effort considering that all bar Ben were having to run down an age group and Pete was having to run down two.
Elsewhere Dan Turner was amongst the prizes in the tough Bridgnorth 10k, the downhill at the start being wiped out completely by the uphill towards the finish, running 34.40 to take 2nd place, Ashley Atkinson was 8thin 37.51, Paul Dean 11th in 38.31, Brian Wright 15th in 39.44, Shaun Bennett 18th in 40.20, Ceri Card 93rd in 49.38, Leny Hall was 255th in 1.04.50 and Julia Condon was 299th in 1.10.22.
A trio of Wolves athletes took part in the Severn Bridges 10k in Shrewsbury with Rob Edwards placing 43rd in 45.08, Peter McCullagh was 71st in 48.29 and Mark Perry finished in 50.10 to take 93rd spot.
And there were a couple of notable performances from individuals who travelled much further afield with James Neilson coming 16th in 35.47 in the Fleet 10k and Roger Grand, returning from injury, made a comeback of 41.59 to finish in 169th place in the Lincoln 10k.