Wes Reid reports from a very wet Forest...
A rain lashed Forest of Dean was the location this year for the annual Gloucestershire AAA Cross Country Championships, which took place at the Five Acres Leisure Centre in Coleford. Tewkesbury AC sent two of it's XC stalwarts in Carol Cowley and Wes Reid who bravely battled the treacherous conditions.
The course took runners around a sodden playing field and across woodland where competitors had to contend with the dreaded "Pit of Doom" and "Hill of Death" as they made their way through the boggy forest terrain.
A severe hailstorm shortly before the ladies race didn't help matters as Cowley took to the 6km course with vigour. Tackling mud strewn ditches, slippery inclines and a increasingly waterlogged field, the veteran campaigner has seen it all before and ran strongly to finish a highly respectable 21st place in 34:00.
Although the rain had stopped, the strong headwinds and atrocious conditions made running very difficult for the men in their longer 9km race. Reid battled not only the elements but a deteriorating course and fading light to finish in 68th with a time of 1:24:16.