Balmoral Estate, what a location!

Rhona returns to Balmoral - 10 February 2014

The Banchory Stonehaven AC athlete is currently enjoying a successful winter cross country season which has already produced a number of highlights.

In December she finished seventh in the under-23 women's race at the European championships in Belgrade and helped Great Britain win team gold medals.

She then made her British senior international debut in the Great Edinburgh cross country meeting at Holyrood Park, finishing a  creditable 21st.

At the beginning of February Rhona picked up a bronze medal behind fellow Team GB squad members Georgie Taylor-Brown and Emelia Gorecka in the British universities and colleges championships at Stirling.

She is now looking forward to competing in the Scottish senior championships at Falkirk later this month and the Home Countries international in March before turning her attentions to what promises to be a busy track season.

Despite appearing in all of these major events Rhona admits she's determined to find time to run at Balmoral.

She said:"I have competed there so often since I was a youngster and I really enjoy it. It is one of my favourite events and it would  be difficult to miss it.

"I was planning to run in the 1500m at the Scottish universities championships but, unfortunately, that takes place the same day as Balmoral.

"To begin with I wasn't sure what to do but I've decided I'll be going to Balmoral."

Rhona will compete in the ConocoPhillips 5Km. It's an event she has won for the past two years, setting course record times on both occasions and few would bet against her completing a hat-trick of victories on 26th April.

The Deeside race will set her up for some big track challenges.Rhona said:"My first track race will be the week before Balmoral when I'm competing in the 1500m at a Scottish women's league meeting.

"The week after Balmoral I'll be doing the 5,000m at the British universities and colleges championships and then I'm  doing a 10,000m at Highgate, which is a big race."

The Highgate race is certain to attract a top  quality field as it is to be the Great Britain team trial for the European championships and the European Cup.

Rhona, like all of Scotland's leading athletes, also has an eye on the Commonwealth Games but is adopting a sensible approach to managing her expectations.

She said:"My aim for the summer is to improve my times. I'd love to be at the Commonwealth Games but it's probably a bit unrealistic. If I'm running well, obviously I'll be doing my best to get close to the qualifying times but I'm not pressurising myself about it at all."




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