Scotland take victory at Senior Home Internationals
Last weekend the Scottish team made their way to Yorkshire to battle it out with the English, Welsh and Irish teams, defending a winning streak of four consecutive years.
Saturday was the inpidual competition on Monk's Road, an area of fast open moorland with contour and rock detail. Strong results from the Scots included class wins for Sasha Chepelin (M20), Jenny Ricketts (W20) and Fanni Gristwood (W21). Chris Galloway and Briony Kincaid coming third on M20 and W20 respectively ensured that Scotland took the top points in the junior classes. Although narrowly missing first place on M21, the Scottish boys still achieved the top score by taking second (Hector Haines), third (Alasdair McLeod), fifth (Ewan McCarthy) and sixth (Duncan Coombs) places. The strongest Scottish domination was in the W21 class where Scotland took first, second, third and fourth places (Fanni Gristwood, Jess Tullie, Jo Shepherd, Hollie Orr, respectively). Overall Scotland took the maximum possible 30 points from the inpidual day and was awarded the Dolgellau Dish.
Sunday brought the relays on Hawswick Clowder, which was similarly open moorland but with more extensive limestone pavement and more intricate contour features. In the Men's competition early success from the Scottish teams made for exciting racing as the English teams kept their strongest runners to the end. Alasdair managed to stay ahead to take his team (Sasha, Hector, Alsadair) to a clear lead. England's Graham Gristwood pulled his team through to second, leaving Ewan and England's Jonny Crickmore fighting for third. Despite strong Scottish support from the crowd, Ewan wasn't able to pass Jonny and his team (Chris, Duncan, Ewan) had to settle for fourth place. In the Women's race the first Scottish team (Kirsten Strain, Jenny, Fanni) got off to a good start and moved up to first place with a good run from Jenny on the second leg, which Fanni was able to hold on to for the win. The second team (Briony, Jo, Jess) had a steadier start and gradually moved up the field. Jess had the run of the day, passing one Welsh and three English teams to bring her team into second place, securing top points for the Women's class and cementing the overall Scottish victory.
The overall scores for the weekend put Scotland in first with 58 points, just two points off the maximum possible. England were second with 46 points, Ireland third with 16 points and Wales fourth with 13 points. Thanks to Aire for hosting the weekend's events and particularly Ian Marshall for his coordination of the SHI competition. Full results are on the Aire website