Muir headlines big British team for televised Great Stirling Cross Country

Laura Muir XC relay 2017

European 1500m champion and double world indoor medallist Laura Muir (running handicap -2.2) will headline the British team to compete at the Simplyhealth Great Stirling Cross Country on Saturday, 12 January 2019.

Muir, the 1500m Diamond League champion, makes her fifth straight appearance in the 4×1.5km relay team, and is yet to be beaten in the event. 

She will anchor the British mixed relay team once again, joining Phil Sesemann (handicap -5.2), Alex Bell (-1.2) and Jamie Williamson (-5.2), who formed part of the mixed relay team in Tilburg.

The event, which is taking place in Stirling for the first time having been held in Edinburgh since its inception in 2007, pits Great Britain & Northern Ireland against the best athletes in Europe and the United States of America.

Kate Avery (-1.3), who took team silver at the European Cross Country Championships in Tilburg on Sunday and won the Great Edinburgh Cross Country in 2016, joins top Brit from Tilburg, Charlotte Arter (-1.7), with fellow team silver medallists Pippa Woolven (-0.8), Jess Piasecki (-1.4) and Verity Ockenden (-0.2) also named. Recent Telford 10k winner Emily Hosker-Thornhill (-1.6) is also in the team.

Andy Vernon (-6.5) has taken three individual medals at the event and is back in a British vest having missed Euro Cross through injury, with senior men’s team silver medallists Charlie Hulson (-5.7), Kristian Jones (-6.0), Ross Millington (-6.6) and Nick Goolab (-4.8) all earning another senior vest.

In total, 13 medallists from the 2018 European Cross Championships are selected, including Under-23 team silver medallist Patrick Dever (-4.8), who recorded the best finish of his career to date with an individual fifth place, earning himself a first senior British vest.

European Junior Women’s team gold medallist Grace Brock (with a runbritain running handicap score of 0.2), who finished 11th on her British debut in Tilburg, joins Junior Men’s team silver medallists Matt Willis (-3.5) and Jack Meijer (-3.6) in the junior mixed relay, with Charlotte Alexander (1.6) also included.

Team Leader Chris Jones, added: “Following yet another strong performance by the British at last weekend’s European Cross Country Championships, we are delighted to be able to name such a strong team for the Great Stirling Cross Country next month.

“The team is brimming with cross country experience that will prove vital in navigating the course in such a hotly contested event against some of the best athletes from across Europe and the USA and I’m optimistic of yet another excellent showing from the British team.”

The event on Saturday, 12 January is free to spectate and will be shown live on BBC Sport from 13:15 to 15:15. For more information please visit

The British Athletics team for the Simplyhealth Great Stirling Cross Country: 

Senior Men:

Patrick Dever (Andy Bibby; Preston)

Nick Goolab (Craig Winrow; Belgrave)

Charlie Hulson (Chris Jones; Liverpool)

Kristian Jones (Swansea)

Ross Millington (Steve Vernon; Stockport)

Andy Vernon (self; Aldershot, Farnham & District)


Senior Women:

Charlotte Arter (Chris Jones; Cardiff)

Kate Avery (Shildon)

Emily Hosker-Thornhill (Mick Woods; Aldershot, Farnham & District)

Verity Ockenden (Tony Houchin; Swansea)

Jess Piasecki (Robert Hawkins; Stockport)

Pippa Woolven (Matt Whiting; Wycombe)


Senior Mixed Relay

Alex Bell (Andrew Henderson; Pudsey & Bramley)

Laura Muir (Andy Young; Dundee Hawkhill)

Philip Sesemann (Andrew Henderson; Leeds City AC)

Jamie Williamson (George Gandy; Springburn)


Junior Mixed Relay

Charlotte Alexander (Wayne Vinton; Herne Hill)

Grace Brock (Cornwall)

Jack Meijer (Barry Hearn; Marshall Milton Keynes)

Matt Willis (self; Wrexham)