Ruts stop running: the Southerns are off!


I hear some good excuses in my line of work. I heard a superb one today. And it wasn’t from a child. The South of England Cross Country Championships, due to be held at Parliament Hill on Saturday, have been cancelled. Why? The ‘state of the ground’. Adverse weather strikes again! Athletics Weekly report that the course is ‘badly rutted’. It is so ridiculous that you have to initially laugh incredulously, and then shout: ‘IT’S A CROSS COUNTRY. THE GROUND IS MEANT TO BE RUTTED.’ Two years ago, the bottom of Parliament Hill was a filthy, calf-deep quagmire. It had gone beyond rutted. Runners speak nostalgically about such horrors; we love it really. It seems that someone has leaned on someone else to force the cancelation; those details will inevitability emerge. Whatever the reason, it is a great shame that such an important event on the athletics calendar has folded in the face of a bit of snow and the odd rut.

Lloyd Park

Running in Lloyd Park, Croydon, earlier – conditions were adverse and ruts were present.

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