Falkirk Vics' Scott Stirling makes his mark with solid finish at World Athletics Cross-Country Championships

Falkirk Victoria Harriers star Scott Stirling secured a 74th-placed finish at the World Athletics Cross-Country Championships over the weekend in Belgrade, Serbia.
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The local runner made the Great Britain and Northern Ireland squad for the top tournament after a stunning season which saw him become the first Scot to win the British Cross Challenge Series at senior level.

He was one of four Scots who travelled as part of the group, and he was the sole Scot in the senior men’s foursome.

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Trainee GP Stirling finished in a time of 31:25, seeing him get back 74th out of 107 finishers.

Falkirk Vics’ Scott Stirling in action (Photo: Bobby Gavin/Scottish Athletics)Falkirk Vics’ Scott Stirling in action (Photo: Bobby Gavin/Scottish Athletics)
Falkirk Vics’ Scott Stirling in action (Photo: Bobby Gavin/Scottish Athletics)

“The team physio Stuart Butler had to scoop me up and help me to the team tent at the end,” Stirling said. “The whole experience was top class. The team environment was incredible, and to have such experience from Eamonn Martin, the senior men’s team manager, and the rest of the squad made this first GB experience really special.”

Stirling joined three other exceptional Scottish athletes to form part of the 22-strong GB team, and in the senior men’s 10k race, he was up against some of the world’s best distance runners.

The top three winners were: Jacob Kiplimo of Uganda (28:09), Berihu Aregawi of Ethiopia (28:12) and Benson Kiplangat of Kenya (28:14).

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The three other Scots in the team also performed well on the day, with Natasha Phillips (Dundee Hawkhill) finishing 30th in the junior women’s race, Craig Shennan (Giffnock North) 35th in the junior men’s race and Alice Goodall (Edinburgh AC) 46th in the senior women’s race.

Speaking to Athletics Weekly after the event, Goodall said: “I’ve done mountain running, 25 laps of the track and lots of cross country but that was the hardest race I’ve ever done.”

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