England retain overall Edinburgh Cup at mountain running championships

The Scottish Borders’  town of Peebles and the Cademuir Hill provided the wonderful backdrop to this year’s Junior Home International on 10 September, which also incorporated the British and Irish Mountain Running Championships.   

The courses were fast and runnable but the unseasonably warm and humid weather made conditions tough for all competitors.

First to race over the 3.8k/175m course were the U17 women. The Welsh team provided strong competition taking the first two finishing places, with England’s Rose Gilldaley completing the podium in 3rd.  Backed up by her teammates in 5th and 7th, this was enough to secure England the team silver medal with Wales taking the team gold by 2 point margin.

Held over the same course as the U17 women, the U17 men's race saw a battle for the first two places with Wales’ Iwan Thomas edging out England’s Ewan Busfield by 5 just seconds. With Jack Sanderson in 4th and Oliver Bailey finishing in 7th, the team positions were reversed and England took the honours ahead of Wales.

The U20 race was 5.9k incorporating 275m of ascent and included a steep 100m climb to the summit of Cademuir Hill.  The first two female athletes home were England’s Lauren Russell and Amelie Lane, both of whom represented GB at the World Trail and Mountain Running Championships in July.  Closing out the team in 4th place, Georgia Bell ensured a comfortable team victory.  

In the final race, the U20 men rounded off an excellent day’s racing. Despite England’s Will Longden claiming the British title finishing well ahead in 1st place, and backed up by Alex Poulston in 3rd, Scotland packed well to claim team gold ahead of England by 2 points.    

An excellent set of team results across the races saw England retain the Edinburgh Trophy.   Second and third positions proved more of a mathematical challenge and Scotland edged out Wales on countback for second place.

England Mountain Running team with Edinburgh Cup

Thanks must go to the Scottish organisers for hosting an excellent event for our young athletes.

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Team photo by Mark Poulston

Individual photos by Neil Renton, Scottish Athletics