What is the Harrier League?
It's a series of 6 cross country races for clubs in the North East of England. You have to be a member of a club to take part and you have to wear your club vest to compete.

You get one number that you keep and have to wear at each race. Look after it. Wearing the wrong one leads to disqualification! You don't have to compete in all of the races and you can start at any point in the season. The races take place at different venues across the North East, with a wide variety of terrains included.

The League has a handicap system with slow, medium and fast packs. The senior men's race is approximately 6 miles. The packs start at 2.5min intervals with the slow pack starting first. Slow or medium pack runners finishing in the top 10% will be promoted to the medium or fast pack respectively.

The senior women's race is approximately 4 miles with packs starting at 2min intervals and a top 10% finish seeing you promoted into the next highest pack.

Junior age groups have fast and slow packs only with a top 20% finisher gaining promotion to the fast pack.

If you are promoted to a higher pack, you stay in the higher pack for the remainder of that season and for the following season. See the rules for the full details.

The league has divisions for the seniors. Runners score points for their club depending on where they finish. The finish position of the club's first 6 men (or 4 women) are added together for the team score. Teams are then ranked (men and women separately) and vie to win their division or avoid demotion. But all runners matter - non-counting runners affect the position of counting runners from other clubs, so everyone plays their part!

There are races for junior age categories as well. They have their own pack system and team competition. Even Under 11s are catered for with a non-competitive short run before the main competition.

You don't have to be of a particular standard to take part, so even if you're new to running you can give it a go. All abilities are represented. But you will need spikes or trail shoes - all races are off road. A love of mud helps too!

Timetable of events on the day
Races for the different age and gender categories are run according to the order below at each event (timings are approximate - the courses vary in length so always be there in plenty of time as races can be earlier than expected. The different ages/genders run separate races):

12.00 Under 11 Boys
12.05 Under 11 Girls
12.15 Under 17 men
12.20 U17 and U20 women
12.35 Under 15 Boys
12.40 Under 15 Girls
12:50 Under 13 boys
12:55 Under 13 girls
13.05 Senior & veteran women
13:50 Senior & veteran Men
** Please note, that these event timings are very much subject to alteration depending upon the nature of the course, and the timings of previous events on the day**
Please, at all times pay attention for Starters Whistles for call up to your particular event.
How do I take part?
Clubs: To register your club contact the league secretaries - John Stephens (john.stephens@northumbria.ac.uk) or Vicki Thompson (amiraptor@gmail.com)

Runners: Find out who in your club is responsible for registering runners and let them know your name and date of birth. That's it. You can be registered at any point in the season. Registration on the day of a race is possible, but register in advance where possible as it's much cheaper.

Other Cross Country fixtures
These non-Harrier League fixtures may be of interest:

9th December 2017 - North Eastern XC championships, Redcar

27th January 2018 - Northern XC championships, Leeds

24th February 2018 - National XC Championships, Parliament Hill, London