Photo by Bobby Gavin
Entry numbers for the 2019 Lindsays National XC have once again broken all recent records.
Fields for the 10 races at Falkirk on Saturday 23 February will now be the largest overall for a quarter of a century since men’s and women’s championships combined in 1993-94.
It’s the 26th edition of the combined event and, remarkably, the entry figure is a staggering 2458 which out-strips the previous best from a couple of years ago.
The 2019 entry for Callendar Park has risen by 184 athletes on last year’s 2274 tally and is up by 659 since 2011 – when the tally was 1799. That’s a rise of 37 percent having taken place in those eight years.
All at scottishathletics want to offer a huge thank you to athletes, clubs, coaches and team managers who are making such a commitment to competition.
‘We’re ecstatic about these entry numbers and must thank our clubs for their wonderful response,’ said Mark Munro, chief executive of scottishathletics.
‘It’s a wonderful event and we’re seeing so many people just wanting to compete and be part of that now. We’ve been pushing the message ‘Competition – It’s What You Train For‘ over the past three or four years and we’re getting athletes, coaches and clubs buying into that.
‘Lindsays came on board as sponsors of the Cross Country Season some five years ago with a commitment to try and help us grow participation. Their support has enabled us to improve a couple of aspects, bringing in an initiative like the Lindsays Trophy, and helped us raise the profile of the Lindsays National XC in particular.
‘Video footage from the event is very popular and last year for the first time we experimented with drone footage, which was excellent.’
We now believe the Lindsays National XC to be the largest and most inclusive National Championship event in Scottish sport (given that in the likes of our Half Marathon event, within the Great Scottish Run, only members are eligible for the championship).
The big rises are in the Senior ranks. The entry for the Senior Men’s race at Falkirk stands at 979 and there is an all-time Record entry for the Senior Women’s race at 406 – up by 41 on 365 last year.
scottishathletics equalised the distances for Men and Women a couple of years ago, with both races at 10K, and the numbers entered suggest a full endorsement of that policy. The Senior Women’s race, as recently as 2011, had 281 entrants.
The Lindsays Trophy always captures attention among our clubs – and the 2018-19 cross country season is shaping up superbly so far.
Record finisher numbers have now been totalled up for the Lindsays National XC Relays at Cumbernauld and the Lindsays Short Course XC at Lanark.
That reflects a remarkable response from clubs in making a commitment to compete in national championship events and, indeed, the list for those with at leasrt one finisher at Cumbernauld and/or Lanark runs to 82 clubs!
At the top of the current table, Giffnock North AC are out in front from the 2018 winners, Garscube Harriers, in a Glasgow head-to-heard. Giffnock have had 168 finishers in the two events and Garscube had 147.
Making up the top five are Edinburgh AC on 117, Central AC on 103, Cambuslang Harriers on 100.
Garscube Harriers celebrate success in the 2018 Lindsays Trophy with Callum Hawkins and Ian Beattie (photo by Bobby Gavin)