Photo montage by Sue Gyford
Five Scots are headed for the Euro Cross this weekend with GB and NI – with each harbouring different hopes for Belgium.
Megan Keith will have bona fide medal ambitions as she competes in the U23 Women’s division after winning the Senior Women’s trial at Liverpool.
Eloise Walker is back in a British vest for cross country, too, while there are first appearances for Angus McMillan, Lynn McKenna and Andrew McGill.
All five have different back stories to their careers, of course, but the parallel theme would be their commitment to their sport, strong club /family support, good coaching and dedication and patience in the pursuit of progress.
Megan features on a special image created by European Athletics around the British team visiting Brussels . . . and rightly so given her record over the past two years.
The Inverness Harriers/Edinburgh Uni Hare and Hounds athlete won the U20 Women’s crown in Dublin in 2021 and followed that with U23 silver in Italy some 12 months ago.
Megan and Eloise at the Euro Cross last year with Alice Goodall, too
‘I love the competition of the European Cross, and I am learning how to race these better each year,’ said Megan, after that big win at Sefton Park (almost a full minute head of the rest).
‘I am excited to see how I get on in Brussels. Liverpool was tough but I was just trying to test myself by turning the screw as the race went on. I am happy with how I did it as it is an unforgiving course, but it was a good test of my strengths.’
European Athletics have now equalised the distances for men and women at the Euro Cross (following the lead of scottishathletics a number of years ago?). It means the U23 Women trio of Megan, Eloise and Lynn will race over 7k.
Lynn came through the ranks at Giffnock North with her twin sister and won Scotland vests in her teens in hill running.
Late she moved to Shettleston Harriers and Glasgow Uni Hare and Hounds and is now coached by John Montgomery in Glasgow.
‘I want to thank everyone who supports me because making a GB and NI team for the Euro Cross is a dream come true,’ she said, with a classic then-to-now photo showing her as a 15-year-old with Giffnock North when Eilish McColgan presented the Lindsays Trophy in 2016.
Angus is based in England and runs for the City of York club.
But his connection to Scotland is very much based in the Highlands. His dad, Donald, is a former Scotland international 1500m runner and still holds the 800m club record with Inverness Harriers.
Angus races in the Senior Men’s event with this being his first vest for GB and NI after wearing Scotland Joma kit in Liverpool.
Great weekend 🇧🇪 for @ShettlestonHarr 👏@lynnmcknna represents @BritAthletics ☑️@FionnualaRoss represents @irishathletics☑️
Seyd Taha Ghafari represents @EuroAthletics refugee team ☑️@SALChiefExec @OvensDavid @DavidFallon88 @Tartanshorts @mick_demarco pic.twitter.com/JP3Ko3G4b1
— scottishathletics (@scotathletics) December 7, 2023
Tags: Euro Cross