Luke Traynor on his way to World XC

THIS WEEKEND’S upcoming World Cross Country Championships in Denmark represent another milestone in the already impressive career of GB international Luke Traynor.
Fresh from running the fastest 5k leg of the day (14 minutes, 59 seconds and close to the course record) when racing for Giffnock North AC at a windy Scottish Road Relays in Livingston on Sunday, Traynor took time – over a roll and square sausage it has to be said – to chat about what he’s been up to and what his aims are for the next few weeks.

Test the best
“First, I’m delighted to make the GB team for Aarhus on Saturday. It’s my third GB cross country vest and I’m determined to put on a good show. Previously I haven’t had much luck – I came home from Hungary with a broken toe!”

“It’s never easy to get into a British squad and the Worlds are another step up, with Kenyans, Ethiopians and all the top guys from around the world but as a team we can make an impact. Every athlete wants to test themselves against the best, and that’s where my passion lies.”

Positive club scene
“The Road Relays in Livingston were an ideal workout for speed … I know I said beforehand that the time wouldn’t be important, it was just to test the legs before next weekend, but actually I’m pretty pleased with sub 15! More important though, the local Scots club atmosphere is brilliant – really positive, competitive but friendly, and with top officials. The club scene is where we all begin – for instance, the whole Giffnock North Ladies team came up through the ranks from Under 13 juniors.”

“I enjoy being right in among my team-mates here. I’ve been to Monaco, Spain and the Czech Republic, but where else but Scotland can everyday club runners queue for their roll and square alongside an international or two? It’s a great sport for friendship.”

For the record(s)
“Next up, I will be home from Denmark only to wash my kit, then off to the USA for four weeks to try to take down national records. I’m currently only 16 seconds off the road 10km record, so I’ll race the Cooper Bridge 10k in South Carolina on 6thApril before three weeks training camp at Tulsa University Oklahoma. Then it’s on to Palo Alto California for a crack at the track 10,000 m mark of 27:48. Busy days, but I’m in the shape of my life and up for the adventure ”

Report by Croy Thomson

The club wishes Luke all the very best at Aarhus this weekend and as he heads for more races in the USA

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