Welsh Championship cross country titles to be decided in Swansea
Attention will shift from the indoor track and field this weekend to the grass, and probably mud, of Singleton Park, where National XC medals for all age groups will be up for grabs. Races start at 11am with the U13 boys, and close with the senior men's race at 2.55pm, where Dewi Griffiths will be looking to extend his winning streak to 7. Behind Griffiths, club mates Phil Matthews and Jack Gooch will also be chasing podium places. Rivals Cardiff AAC will be led by club captain Carwyn Jones, and youngsters James Hunt and Dan Nash.
Beth Kidger of Brighton Pheonix will return to defend her senior women’s title and will aim to fend off last year’s runner up, Cardiff AAC’s Clara Evans once again. The evergreen Andrea Whitcombe last won the Welsh title at Dinefwr in 2014 and will lead Swansea’s hopes of prizing the team title away from Cardiff AAC who took victory 12 months ago. Alaw Beynon-Thomas and Sian Edwards will be on hand to support Whitcombe in the Swansea team.
Mel Wilkins has proved herself amongst the top Welsh endurance athletes so far this season and will contest her first Welsh Senior Cross Country Championships on Saturday. Bronwen Jenkinson took the Welsh 10km title last week in Llandudno and along with 2015 junior champion Bronwen Owen will look to trouble the other pre-race favourites. Both senior races will incorporate the Welsh Masters Cross Country Championships and the 'Mass Participation Cup' which was introduced in 2016 to increase inter-club competition at the event. Matthew Willis form Wrexham AAC was the first British finisher at the Spar European Cross Country Championships in Samorin and is unlikely to be troubled in defence of his junior men’s title. Notable entries in the remaining age groups include last year’s winners; Deeside AAC’s Mia Roberts and Menai Track & Fields’ Mike Spill.
This year's 115th George Crump memorial races, which will see a couple of innovations, have attracted nearly 1000 entrants with 46 Welsh clubs represented, who will run through a marquee section providing hopefully a corridor of noise and support each lap. Each race will also see spot prizes allocated to runners, and the participation cup will again we awarded to the club with the most senior, male and female, finishers.
And if you fancy something completely different, there's the chance to head across the park to the Swansea athletics track and learn more about Javelin throwing!
Glasgow Grand Prix
Six of Wales' finest will be testing themselves against high class company at the muller Indoor Grand Prix in Glasgow; Sally Peake (Pole Vault), Olivia Breen (60m), Owen Smith (400m), Tom Marshall and Jake Heyward (1500m), and Sam Gordon (60m). Events start at 2pm with live coverage on BBC 2 and online.
North Wales road race double
Up in North Wales there are two oportunities for runners to test their fitness on the road; Saturday sees the Rhyl 10 mile road race, and Sunday the Wrexham Village Bakery Half - good luck to all those running, especially anyone doing both!!
Enjoy your weekend, stay warm, especially if you're out on your Sunday long run.