Morpeth Harrier Cat Macdonald goes to Scotland to beat the incessant rain

Morpeth Harriers members had a more relaxing weekend than they expected due to the weather, but one club member did manage to get her running shoes on for some serious competition.
Catriona MacDonald in action at the Scottish Nationals. Picture: Peter Scaife.Catriona MacDonald in action at the Scottish Nationals. Picture: Peter Scaife.
Catriona MacDonald in action at the Scottish Nationals. Picture: Peter Scaife.

Incessant rain caused the cancellation of the English National Cross Country Championships, which had been due to be held in Shropshire on Saturday.

It was only the third time since the Second World War that the championships had been cancelled, with the other occasions not due to the conditions but to either foot and mouth disease or Covid), with organisers deciding not to run the event on Friday.

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They put out a statement on Monday saying the event would now take place in September and said: “Whilst recognising how different it will be to have a National Cross Country in September, we hope and trust that athletes will embrace the experience.”

However, the Lindsays Scottish Nationals did take place at Falkirk over the same weekend, with Morpeth Harrier Catriona Macdonald once again in action.

Running for her Scottish club, Bellahouston Road Runners, Macdonald finished 10th, recording a time of 38 minutes 58 seconds for the grassy 10k course, with the race won by Edinburgh AC’s Alice Goodall in 36:03.

Finishing 10th in each of the last three years, Macdonald has certainly proved to be the model of consistency, although Saturday’s time was the fastest she has recorded so far.

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Missing competitive action, some of Morpeth’s younger members took part in park runs locally, with KEVI sixth-former Joe Dixon recording the fastest time at Blyth of 15 minutes 18 seconds and Under-17 Oliver Tomlinson 17:07 over the same course.

Fellow U17 Elliot Kelso was second back on Newcastle’s Town Moor in 15:50, followed home by U20 James Tilley in 16:21.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, Morpeth life member Serod Batochir ran a remarkable two hours 10 minutes, 10 seconds in some difficult conditions when representing Mongolia in the Osaka Marathon in Japan on Sunday.

Now 42 years of age, Batochir will be aiming to represent his country in the Paris Olympics this July, which will be a remarkable seventh Games for the well-travelled veteran.