The Dublin Masters Cross Country was on yesterday in St Anne’s Park, Raheny. It’s a fast flat dry course which is strange for a cross country race a this time of year.
This year had the largest field for a long time with some pretty speedy guys too. The start was through the only wet patch and I got covered in mud from this bit because I was right behind someone. A fast and furious start eased into a nice pace up the back end of the course before turning onto the hard packed forest trail. Being slightly downhill here was a help but I still lost a few places to some slow starters. Next it was over a log and past the supporting corner, then more downhill, a sharp u-turn and back to the supporters. Lastly, over some soft grass to the finish.
I kept a steady pace for the first two laps and managed to keep it up for the third lap where I found out afterwards that I pulled away from Bren. I was passed by a Rathfarnam runner (Turlough) who tried to drag one of this team mates away from me. It worked for a bit but I managed to get back to him and over the last lap, we had a good battle up the back straight. After the u-turn, I started to go and powered past as well as I could. From there it was a slog to the finish, but getting faster all the time, which was good because there was another Rathfarnham runner closing on my heels.
I finished in 14th place, one after Ciaran in 22:49. I can’t complain about that too much even if I didn’t get my goal of top 10. Considering Ciaran’s run in the Tom Brennan, to get close to him was a fair achievement. The course measured slightly under 6km, but that may have been down to running through the trees for so long.
Next up is the Leinster Senior next weekend.