Young cross country runner Todd comes fourth in Scottish national race

Twelve-year-old Shetland runner Layla Todd finished fourth in the Scottish National Cross Country Championships in Falkirk at the weekend.

Cross country runner Layla Todd (left) put in a tremendous performance to finish fourth in Falkirk at the weekend.

Todd braved cancelled boat journeys, an extended stay on the mainland and really challenging weather conditions to take part in the Lindsays-sponsored event.

It was the third cross country championship meeting she had been to on the mainland over the winter. After a third-place finish in the North District event in December and a fifth place finish in the Inter Districts event in January, expectations were high for another strong performance in what is the flagship age grade cross country championship of the season.

A field of 142 athletes took to the start line at Callendar Park in conditions which saw everything from sunshine, wind, hail and snow. The route had been changed because of severe weather over the previous week, making for a course that was very heavy underfoot and flooded in several places.

Todd managed to get to the front of the queue at the line and set off at a steady pace, settling in to a position within the top 20 or so runners after the initial surge.

Over the next 12 minutes she maintained her form and starting easing her way up through the field to settle in sixth place as the runner approached the final quarter of the race.

As the finish was coming into sight, Todd started to kick for home and her efforts were rewarded as she moved up to fourth and battled all the way to the finish line to maintain that position, getting it on the line with no more than a foot’s length from the athlete in fifth place.

Coach David Wagstaff said it was a fantastic achievement for the youngster, who was not only a great prospect for the future in athletics but also an aspiring triathlete who was doing well on the junior circuit.

Todd and her parents thanked NorthLink Ferries, without whose generous sponsorship participation in the cross country championships would not have been possible.


Add Your Comment

Add Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.

200 words left

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Get Latest News in Your Inbox

Join the The Shetland Times mailing list to get one daily email update at midday on what's happening in Shetland.