4 Mar

Jack Crawford Cross Country?

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The Jack Crawford Cup attracted almost 200 runners to Bishopbriggs in the north of Glasgow on Saturday, February 27, for the rescheduled Springburn Harriers annual 10k 'road' race.

The original event had been postponed due to concern for the safety of runners, however the mud bath that led to the car park gave participants an early indication of what the course would be like on the day.

At 2:30pm the runners set off with a fair degree of pushing and jostling as they negotiated the restricted pavements and roads at the start of the route. A sharp right turn took competitors eastwards along the undulating canal path, where they were welcomed by heavy underfoot conditions, puddles and narrow sections which made overtaking extremely difficult. They then crossed the bridge over the frozen canal and headed westwards back to the race HQ near the local Leisure Drome, under the bridge along a much flatter but still arduous section with puddles and icy parts before crossing another bridge and returning through a puddle ridden wooded path before opening up to reveal the finish line beside the race HQ.

Kerr Continues Winning Streak

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Fresh from his success at the recent Kirkintilloch 12.5k, Olympian Stuart Kerr (38) ran to victory, completing the course first, with a time of 33:09. Glasgow University's Daniel Bradford (22) finished as runner up in 33:26 and Garscube Harrier Joe McKnight (34) earned third spot with 33:51.

Zakrzewski Prepares for Chile

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In the women's race Joasia Zakrzewski (33) earned gold, successfully negotiating the course in 38:29. The Dumfries Runner beat Garscube's Alison Winship (38) by 80 seconds, with Glasgow University's tall, Polish, runner Katarzyna Janiak earning third in 40:11.

Women's race winner Joasia Zakrzewski told www.scottishrunningguide.com "The course was horible; it was muddy, waterlogged and dangerous in some places beside the frozen canal. It was much more like a cross-country race than a 'road' one. Still even if the heavy underfoot conditions made the race feel slow, I managed to squeeze out a PB and then went on to win the Netherhall 10 miler the next day. I am about to go off and do the Atacama Crossing so I wanted the experience of running two consecutive races for mental preparation but I didn't expect to win either of them, never mind both!"

Atacama Crossing

Established in 2004, the Atacama Crossing is a six-day, 250k race across the Atacama Desert of Chile, which is basically a rainless plateau made up of salt lakes, lava flows and sand. It is noted to be the driest place on earth, with some places where no human has ever recorded a single drop of rain and with dry river beds that have not seen water in 120,000 years. The Atacama Crossing 2010 has attracted competitors from 34 countries, including Joasia Zakrzewski who will help the UK field be the largest, with a total of 39 participants.