Honeyeater Cross Country 2023

Certainly Ashgrove’s strongest Brisbane Cross Country Series team effort in a long time yesterday. Courageous running by our athletes on the tough course at Honeyeater saw us go down by only 3 points to Thompson Estate 567 to 564 points with Toowong Harriers in third place on 529 points in Round 2 of the Brisbane Cross Country Series.

It was the first time that we were able to utilise both Honeyeater and Ross Road Reserve (for the 4k and 6k races).
How did everyone feel about the course that we finally came up with?

This course was the culmination of a long search trying to find a test for runners in being able to run both at speed with good mobility on the flat and still be tough enough to endure some very steep grass and Trail Hills. If we want to be serious about what would be required for excelling in 2032 then we need to develop these all round attributes and for that reason having this course as an annual goal for us to try to master is very useful.

The Honeyeater bit is actually a lot tougher than it looks because of the sharp Hound Hill soon after the start and the tuftiness of the grass on the flat which provides an ultimate test of the balance that’s inherent in all great distance runners.

The 2k Ross Road Reserve loop used once in the 4k race and twice on the 6k race is formerly the site of a dairy farm and is very pretty with its lakes, trails, creek and bird life.

It’s quite an organisational effort to execute on such an involved course and the response we had from our helpers was first class.

Daniel Casey made a great debut on the microphone and with his knowledge of the sport and it’s statistics second to none we may have found a worthy successor to the iconic commentators Bruce Macavaney and Brian Chapman.

While we didn’t quite nail the honey this time round there were lots of very strong runs with Elliott Stannard in the Boys 1k and Laura Bray in the Girls 3k going down only narrowly, with Laura showing tremendous courage to hang on for a close second after rolling an ankle while leading.

Other very good junior efforts included Eliza Preston, Amelia Schulze, Nick Bray and Tom Carey whose big aerobic engine and quick ground contacts are starting to really come to the fore.

Sonny Adam and Perry Croft were 3rd and 4th in the 4k and in the 6k Tully Schweitzer, Lily Fraczek and Finn O’Keefe were very good on the exceptionally tough course.

A big thanks to everyone who was involved from our club, our fellow clubs and Queensland Athletics in making it a challenging but enjoyable day.