CENTRAL AC'S Senior Mens Team secured a record-equalling eighth title in a row, at last weekend's Scottish Cross Country Championships in Callendar Park, Falkirk.

It was a bright, cold day with excellent underfoot conditions on what is a traditionally-testing course for all age groups.

As well as the men's team success, there silvers for the Under-17 Men and team bronze for the Under-20 Women.

There had been some talk prior to the Championships of Corstorphine AAC anticipating ending Central’s seven year winning streak in the Senior Mens Team event.

On the day there was certainly a challenge but Central’s yellow and blue vests soon made their way into top placings to ensure the team title was retained.

Top counter on the day was Alastair Hay in fifth with a classy 33min 58secs clocking over the undulating 10,000metre course. Aidan Thompson showed real determination to finish ninth (34.25) while Cameron Milne (13th; 34.50) worked well throughout.

Scott McDonald (18th; 35.24) showed his normal strong running while Conan McCaughey (25th; 35.32) and Michael Wright (32nd; 35.46) ensured the club closed in with 102 points, with Corstorphine in second on 122 points and Shettleston Harriers on 149

Matthew Sutherland (34th; 35.54) provided the necessary back-up to the scoring runners.

As the senior runners streamed through there were further improved performances from Murray MacLarty (42nd; 36.25), Fraser Logan (48th; 36.34) and Scott Brember (87th; 37.44).

Euan Jack looked committed throughout to finish 189th in 40.31 and there was further strong runs from Neil Cameron (220th; 41.34), Ross McNaught (231st; 41.57), David Eckersley (282nd; 42.51), Donald Shaw (295th; 43.14), Will Hensman (296th; 43.17), Gordon Appelbe (354th; 44.35), Colin Alexander (363rd; 44.50) and Robin Mussett (397th; 45.58). Fraser Purves (410th; 46.27) just held off Hugh Buchanan (411th; 46.28) ahead off Iain Dunsmore (430th; 47.01), Jens Subke (478th; 48.22), Ben Noad (486th; 48.43), Mark Logie (558th; 42.49), Colin Sinclair (562nd; 53.08), Allan Gall (567th; 53.23), Cameron Campbell (574th; 53.51) and Sandy MacLarty (619th; 63.36), an impressive 29 finishers from Central AC.

Central senior ladies were also defending champions, but with a thinner team further weakened by illness, seventh club was a good outcome by the team’s top four counters.

The course was the same as for the men and this suited marathon specialist Fanni Gyurko, she fought hard for her excellent 8th place finish in 39.40. Catriona Buchanan in 24th place (39.40) and Kim Timmins (36th, 43.38) also featured well to the front end of the race.

Hazel Dean (83rd, 47.16), Any Hendry (102nd, 48.35), Kirsten McStay (116th , 49.59), Becky Hay (130th, 50.55) and Alison Curry (232nd, 58.26) all featured well in a race with 271 finishers.

Central’s Under 17 Men were always in contention for team medals in their 6000metre challenge with Ben MacMillan leading Central’s effort in 18th (22.43), backed-up by further sound performances from Tom Graham-Marr (23rd; 22.55), Telfer Gray (25th; 23.10) and Sandy Holl (29th; 23.19), the team just short of topping the podium by two points.

It was also good to see Gregor McArthur pit himself against the best in Scotland finishing in a creditable 65th placing in 26 minutes exactly. Central has just a single Under 17 women with Lizzie Stansfield showing up well in 30th, 29.34.

The Under 20 women’s race of 7.5 kilometres was a tough battle with Central’s Kate Gallagher pushing hard amongst the leading group for early laps of the race.

In the end Kate lost out the tussle for the individual bronze medal, finishing fourth place in 29.19. However, she did not come away empty handed as some great running by team-mates Fiona Davies (15th, 32.50) and Eleanor Hanson (33rd, 36.50) gave them bronze team places.