Gold for Buchanan at Victorian Cross Country Championships

Rd 5 XCR16: Bundoora Cross Country


Andrew Buchanan has claimed his maiden Victorian Open Championship, winning the Victorian Cross Country title in dominant fashion on Saturday at Bundoora and leading MUAC’s Premier Men to second place.  MUAC was well represented at the top end of the race with Nick Earl and Martin Mashford in the leading packs as the race surged over the hills of Bundoora Park. A wet week made the coursem muddy underfoot, a true test of cross country running and Buchanan shone, breaking clear from several previous winners through the middle of the race to have a clear lead with a kilometre to go to win in 30:34 for the 10km race. The lightly trained Martin Mashford and Nick Earl ran superbly to take 8th and 7th respectively putting MUAC’s premier men achingly close to a victory for the day.

Regan Lamble, fresh off a grand tour of the continent that secured her nomination to the Australian Olympic Team, got in some great cross training at her XCR debut for MUAC, taking 14th place. The team of Lamble, Ellen Schaef, Aislinn Prendergast, Lanita Steer and Ella Trimboli claimed 5th place in Premier Women to continue their inexorable move up the premiership ladder.


Behind the scenes with MUAC at XCR

Let’s dive behind the scenes to find out how Team MUAC gets organised for a cross country race.

7 days before the race

The Team Manager, Max Ueda, and Team Captains, Martine Botha and Zac Newman, will be working the phones, emails and messages encouraging everyone to come out and race. An up to date tally, kept online, ensures that the team knows how many athletes are committed to race, who can’t make it and who needs a lift or is on the bus. Every race the team is aiming to hit the club’s goals of four teams of open men and three teams of open women. This effort will continue for most of the week. The over/under on the number of texts Zac sends Andy Buchanan is 6.5.

4 days before the race

With entries closing at midday on Wednesday, an email from the club will go out to the whole club with details of the upcoming race and encouragement to get involved.  The email will also mention the upcoming Thursday night team dinner, report on the previous races, have the latest golden shoe ladders and much general club news. The email will get posted on the club’s facebook and twitter feeds as well. Winter Volunteer Coordinator Fred Smithers will be on the hunt for those who can fill the clubs volunteer duties, without which the club will score no points. This week he’ll have David Sullivan, Charlie Park and Emile Kaskauskaite on the list to arrive at Bundoora at 9am and help at the All Schools Cross Country. If the race is a relay the Team Manager will calculate how many teams MUAC will have and make sure we’ve got enough relay teams entered.

3 days before the race

The registrar, Tim Thomas, will check the online registration and entry system to ensure that all pending memberships have been processed in time for the midday cut off.

2 days before the race

The last night of training before the race and maybe a lighter session depending on the coach and the race.  There’ll be some last minute chatter about who is racing or not. Everyone heads to The Clyde Hotel after training for a team dinner for a parma or the pie special, a couple of beers and some discussion about the season so far and the race ahead. If the weekend’s race is a relay, the team lineups will be announced at the pub.

1 day before the race

Senior MUAC Forecaster Dr Nick Earl will get out of bed extra early to make sure there enough time to create a race day forecast. The forecast will get posted on MUAC’s social media channels on Friday afternoon.

Race day

Our volunteers will be out bright and early, marshalling on the course, handing out water at the finish line and helping the officials. Well before the race the club tent and gear will be taken out of storage, packed up and taken out to the race to be set up. Head Gaffer Tim Thomas supervises the tent and tarpaulin process and sets an exacting standard to maximise athlete comfort. Once the marquee is setup, race bibs and chips will be collected from the race administration and the business of racing begins. If it’s a relay, team captains for each of our 8-12 teams will be busy making sure all their athletes have arrived and assigning them a race order.  Team sheets will be filled out and then changed as teams are reshuffled. Athletes not racing, partners or parents will be cajoled into taking photos as everyone races. Once done racing, everyone retires to the marquee for some well earned afternoon tea and to discuss the race. Some provisional team results will be acquired from the Oracle, Ian Sloane. Significant results and photos will get posted to social media straight away. All the gear and the marquee will be packed up and returned to the Rawlinson.

The two days after the race

The results will be checked to ensure that they’re correct, with queries emailed to AV within 72 hours of the race. Photos will be uploaded to flickr and facebook. A race report (hey that’s this!) will be written and posted on the club website with the photos embedded along with the athsvicTV coverage. The report will be posted across all MUAC’s social media channels. Results will be submitted to MUS so they appear on the MUS website. The best photos will be uploaded to the clubrooms slideshow for regular viewing.

Four days after the race

Once the final results are published, Golden Shoe Computor Nick Earl will plug the results into the spreadsheet and update the ladder. Final results, team scores, team ladders and individual ladders will be uploaded to the honourboard in the MUAC Club Rooms.

Then it’s time to start thinking about the next race.

Round 5 XCR16 Bundoora Cross Country