National Cross-Country School Finals Return to Prestwold Hall for 2018
Following a highly successful switch to Prestwold Hall near Loughborough in 2017, the National Cross-Country Finals for school years 5, 6, and 7 will return to the same venue on Saturday March 24th 2018. England Athletics will be supporting the event again, and with the action from the course being live-streamed on a 12 metre screen, and live across the world, it certainly has a big occasion feel about it.
Teams last year came from all points of the country, stretching from North of the Tyne to Cornwall. A truly National event!
The event is combined with the Leicestershire and Rutland Year 3/4 county championships which should see the total number of participants far exceed the 1600 that took part in 2017.
Event director John Skevington who leads up the Leicestershire Running and Athletics Network (LRAN) explained, “The inaugural final in 2016 highlighted that there was a real desire for quality and most importantly, appropriate competition for these age groups and this was proved by the returning teams in 2017 along with a real new influx of teams keen to take up the opportunity. We are very keen that the event is undertaken in the right spirit. These younger athletes, some of which will hopefully go on to compete at the highest level I am sure, are welcomed whatever their ability to an event where they can test themselves out whilst experiencing the exhilaration of being part of a big event in a supportive environment.”
The Year 7 races have been very much welcomed as a stepping stone to for the next school year where many of the better athletes will be aiming for qualification for the English Schools finals. It is very much hoped that this early taste of big event environment will serve well those looking to stay in the sport.
There is no entry fee and the organisers will accept individual entrants, however in keeping with creating a team spirit and a less pressured day, teams of up to 12 per age group for both boys and girls are encouraged. This means that a team could potentially be up to 72 athletes! The event is also looking at creating a network of ambassadors who will spread the word in their area, and parents of entrants are encouraged to recruit others with the key message “don’t keep it to yourself - If you want to run bring a friend!"
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