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Friday, 2 June 2017

2017 Wellington Secondary Schools XC Races Harcourt Park Upper Hutt Wed 31 May

Autumn colour


The venue for this year’s event was Harcourt Park in Upper Hutt. While the park has been used as the location of primary schools cross country events this is the first time that College Sport have used it for a secondary schools XC.

Advantages offered by this venue include good parking, a scenic location and a layout that offers the potential for courses of varying layouts. 

The XC races this week were conducted over a 2km course that included several rises, a bit of downhill, a log barrier, some road crossings and plenty of turns.  It was generally good for spectators. 

he only thing that was probably not quite right was the start which needs to be wider especially since some of the start fields were quite large.

Taking photos can be a bit tricky especially on a bright sunny day when tree-generated shadows are cast by a low winter sun. You have to pick your spots carefully.

This year there were around 448 finishers across 7 races. The distances are in line with what can be expected at the National Secondary Schools XC to be held in Christchurch later this month. 

The Wellington event provides good experience for those intending to represent their schools at the nationals at allows selectors to pick teams for the relay races which are held on the Sunday following the main Saturday races. 

It should come as no surprise that the athletes who did well are the ones we see racing on most Saturdays.

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