9th December 2017


Emelia Gorecka (coach: Chris Thompson, club: Aldershot Farnham & District) will captain the British team at the European Cross Country Championships on Sunday 10 December in Samorin, Slovakia.

Gorecka earned a popular victory at the trials at the Liverpool Cross Challenge last month, sealing the senior women’s title for the first time to confirm her place in the British team for these championships.

It hasn’t all been plain-sailing for the two-time European cross country U20 champion, who has faced a couple of years of injury but her reward for winning in Liverpool is her first call-up to the senior women’s team at these championships. After her junior success on the terrain, Gorecka is a popular character for athletes and athletics fans alike and she is raring to put on the British vest once again.

Gorecka commented on her selection as team captain:

“I am thrilled to be named as the captain of the British team. It was very special for me to win in Liverpool a couple of weeks ago and earn my first call-up to the senior women’s team, but this is an unexpected honour which is an added bonus. Just to be back racing and healthy is a fantastic feeling and I’m really looking forward to seeing how everyone performs on Sunday.

“We have an incredibly strong team of 40 and we are all ready for some hard racing in Samorin against Europe’s finest. Great Britain and Northern Ireland have a strong tradition at these championships and we will look to continue that at this edition. I’ve enjoyed success at junior level at these championships so I’m really excited to be racing on this stage again.”

She will race alongside Lily Partridge (Aldershot Farnham & District), Gemma Steel (Liz Nuttall, Charnwood), Charlotte Taylor (Helen Lehman-Winters, Nene Valley), Steph Twell (Mick Woods, AFD) and Elle Vernon (David Turnbull, Stockport) in the senior women’s team. A four-time junior team gold medallist at these championships, Gorecka is guaranteed to fight for every place as the team aim for the medal positions.

Unfortunately, Erin Wallace (Dudley Walker, Giffnock North) has had to withdraw from the U20 women’s race through injury. British squad member of the IAAF World Cross Country team in April this year, Phoebe Barker (Richard Owen, Tonbridge) replaces her in the team.

The races start at 8:00am UK time and will be shown live on the BBC Red Button and Online. For further information on the team, read our team media guide here.  


The British Athletics team for the European Cross Country Championships:

Senior Men:

Andrew Butchart (Terrance Mahon, Central AC)

Ben Connor (Steve Vernon, Derby)

Dewi Griffiths (Kevin Evans, Swansea Harriers)

Tom Lancashire (Steve Cram, Bolton)

Sam Stabler (Rob Denmark, Leicester)

Alex Teuten (Roderick Lock, Southampton)


Senior Women:

Emelia Gorecka (Chris Thompson, Aldershot Farnham & District)

Lily Partridge (Aldershot Farnham & District)

Gemma Steel (Liz Nuttall, Charnwood)

Charlotte Taylor (Helen Lehman-Winters, Nene Valley)

Steph Twell (Mick Woods, Aldershot Farnham & District)

Elle Vernon (David Turnbull, Stockport)


U23 Men:

Patrick Dever (Andy Bibby, Preston)

Daniel Jarvis (Mick Woods, Liverpool Harriers)

Mahamed Mahamed (Peter Haynes, Southampton)

Chris Olley (Mark Hookway, Tonbridge)

Jack Rowe (Helen Lehman-Winters, Aldershot Farnham & District)

Joe Steward (Harry Kelly, East Cheshire)


U23 Women:

Philippa Bowden (Mick Woods, Aldershot Farnham & District)

Amy-Eloise Neale (Greg Metcalf, Wakefield)

Amy Griffiths (Rob Denmark, Aldershot Farnham & District)

Jess Judd (Mick Judd, Chelmsford)

Phoebe Law (Mick Woods, Kingston & Poly)

Mhairi MacLennan (John Lees, Inverness)


Junior Men:

Scott Beattie (Mike Bateman, Morpeth)

Ben Dijkstra (Alan Maddocks, Leicester)

Jake Heyward (James Thie, Cardiff)

William Richardson (Peter Stewart, Birchfield Harriers)

Lachlan Wellington (Vince Stamp, City of Portsmouth)

Matthew Willis (Self-coached, Wrexham AC)


Junior Women:

Phoebe Barker (Richard Owen, Tonbridge)

Niamh Brown (Mick Woods, Aldershot Farnham & District)

Cari Hughes (Andy Walling, Swansea)

Harriet Knowles-Jones (Paul Roden, Warrington)

Khahisa Mhlanga (Mick Judd, Chelmsford)

Victoria Weir (Bud Baldaro, City of Plymouth)


Senior Mixed Relay:

Cameron Boyek (David Lowes, Shildon)

Melissa Courtney (Rob Denmark, Shaftesbury Barnet)

Tom Marshall (James Thie, Cardiff AC)

Sarah McDonald (David Harmer, Birchfield)