On 29 April 2013 In Junior News

Bromsgrove and Districts Schools XC

It was a gloomy Wednesday afternoon in January and a cold wind was blowing as I stood with 50 other Year 8 and Year 9 boys on the start line of the Bromsgrove District Schools cross-country race.  My mind flashed back to how I managed to get here. I had run for my school at Sanders Park in Bromsgrove in a year 8 only event to qualify for this race. Only the top 15 qualified. The race was over 1600 metres, a short distance for me. I came 11th.  So here I was about to run 3500m against year 8 and 9 boys, some of whom were over a year older than me. The horn sounded. The bigger older boys shot off and my friend Max shouted, “we’ve had it lads!”  I set off at a steady determined pace. My next-door neighbour, Matt was competing for a different school and a friendly tension and rivalry had been building up between us all week.  About a third of the way round I was in front of Matt and from the crowd my dad joked, “Jacob is kicking your ass Matt!” This spurred me on.  Usually I prefer to run over a longer distance but three quarters of the way round although I was still ahead, I had developed a pain in my knee and each hill felt harder. I was slowing down.  As I neared the finish line and we hit tarmac I heard the thuds of a runner behind me. Shocked, I glanced back to find Matt coming at full pelt towards me! As quick as a flash I sprinted to the finish line. I crossed the line in 11th place, just beating Matt and qualifying for the Hereford and Worcestershire Schools Cross-Country Championship!

Jacob Gollings

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