Central AC’s Senior Men took top honours at the final match of the East District Cross Country League which was played out at Deans Country Park in Livingston. Hamish Hickey enjoyed the almost perfect conditions to lead a strong team to victory on the day, as they clinched the League title for the tenth occasion.
As always the day commenced with the Under-11 races with both the Girls and Boys facing 1.6 kilometre runs. There was some good packing from Central’s Under-11 Boys with Finlay MacGregor (23rd; 6 minutes 51 seconds), Jake Drummond (25th; 6:52) and Joel Gillan (26th; 6:53) and with the essential back-up from Logan Bell (57th; 7:54) the boys finished as fifth team on the day. Ciara Middleton was the sole Central girl runner with a fine 29th place and a time of 7:38.
The Under-13 Girls and Boys had a full 3.2 kilometre lap of the course to negotiate. In the Boys race Aaron Middleton caught the eye in ninth (12:01) and with further good runs from Joshua Kennedy (24th; 12:44), Henry Crossley (48th; 13:53) and Alex Dunlop (49th; 14:03) the Central team finished in sixth place on the day and an excellent third placing for the season. For the Girls, Leah Brown ran well to take 44th placing with 15:04.
Connor Bell, fresh from his quality run the previous weekend, always looked in control of the 4 kilometres Under-15 Boys race coming home for an emphatic victory with 13 minutes 39 seconds. Euan Docherty had another strong run to finish 21st (15:35). For the combined Under-15 Girls and Under-17 Women’s race, a fourth team place both on the day and over the season was achieved by some strong running by Summer McLean (12th; 16:28), Catriona Kane (13th; 16:39), Mirren Henry (20th; 17:24), Anna McKinnon (23rd; 17:41), Zosia Padden (33rd; 18:48), Leona Melville (40th; 19:32) and Heidi Eik-Maxwell (45th; 19:52).
Sam Grivell may have been the only Central Under-17 Man to tackle the 6.4 kilometre two lap course but here showed continued improvement to finish in 13th with a useful 24:38 timing.
It was Under-20 runner Hamish Hickey who showed his strength and confidence to become the latest Central AC athlete to win an East District League race, here completing the 9.6 kilometre, 3 lap course in 31 minutes 8 seconds. Alastair Hay again produced a sterling performance in fourth overall (31:30) and with back-up from Dale Colley (eighth; 31:53), Matthew Sutherland (11th; 32:12), Michael Wright (12th; 32:26) and Under-20 runner Ben MacMillan (13th; 32:28), Central again took team honours and lifted the Senior Men’s Team Trophy for the season.
The essential back-up came from the top two Masters runners on the day, Ross Houston (15th; 32:40) and Scott Brember (19th; 32:58), while there were further top performances from Robert Russell (25th; 33:29), Luca Fanottoli (26th; 33:34) and Under-20 Telfer Gray (36th; 34:12). David Eckersley (99th; 38:37) showed great concentration throughout to complete Central’s Masters team who gained second place, and led home more solid performances from Donald Shaw (103rd; 38:48), Alan Hume (120th; 39:49), Ross McNaught (129th; 40:14), Tal Edie (140th; 40:37), Iain Dunsmore (150th; 41:02) and Jens Subke (157th; 41:27). Charles Graham-Marr (169th; 42:08) stuck well to the task as did the remaining Central runners Hugh Buchanan (186th; 43:10), Colin Alexander (191st; 43:23), Roger Greenaway (211th; 45:21), Liam McCabe (218th; 46:17), Ben Noad (229th; 47:22), Allan Gall (243rd; 48:33), Colin Sinclair (251st; 49:46) and Cameron Campbell (257th; 50:17) as some 27 Central runners finished the Senior Men’s race making up a tenth of the total field.
In the Senior Women’s race over 6.4 kilometres, Catriona Buchanan led her team in with a fine 13th place display in 25:24, supported by Claire Houston (26th, 26:47), Mandy Williams (29th, 27:39), Hazel Dean (58th, 29:48) and Jane Waterhouse (104th, 32:49) with the team finishing the season in 4th place.