Great Edinburgh International Cross Country

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Great Edinburgh International Cross Country
Holyrood Park Arthurs seat DSC04963.JPG
The race takes place in the green backdrop of Holyrood Park
Date Early January
Location Edinburgh, Scotland
Event type Cross country
Distance 8 km for men
6 km for women
4x1 km mixed relay
Established 2005
Official site Great Edinburgh International Cross Country

The Great Edinburgh International Cross Country is an annual cross country running competition that takes place every January in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is one of the competitions in the Great Run series of athletics events and is held alongside the Great Winter Run 5 kilometres mass participation race.[1] The event was first held in Edinburgh in 2005 after the city was awarded the Great North Cross Country which relocated from Durham.[2] The Great Edinburgh International Cross Country features three professional races: the men's 8 km race, the women's 6 km race, and the 4x1km relay.[3] It is an IAAF permit meeting, which means that performances can be used to qualify for the annual IAAF World Cross Country Championships.[4]

The grassy, occasionally muddy,[5] course in Holyrood Park runs in a circular, clockwise pattern.[6] The same venue was used to host the 2003 European Cross Country Championships and the 2008 IAAF World Cross Country Championships.[7] It has had relatively difficult routes in the past, with runners twice having to climb and descend Haggis Knowe (a steep hill) in 2009.[8] The meeting attracts cross country athletes of the highest calibre, with past competitors including six-time World Champion Kenenisa Bekele, Gebregziabher Gebremariam, Tirunesh Dibaba and Eliud Kipchoge.[9][10]

The meeting is broadcast by the BBC annually,[10] and it has received sponsorship from VisitScotland (in 2006) Bupa (from 2007 to 2014) and PureGym in 2016.[9][11][12]

A new team competition format was introduced for the 2011 event. The four teams assembled were Great Britain, Europe, the United States and Great Britain Under-23s. Britain's Mo Farah won the race but the Europeans, featuring all the reigning European Cross medallists, won the overall team challenge.[13]

Garrett Heath had three consecutive wins in the men's race from 2014 to 2016.[14]

Past winners[edit]

Korir (2017 winner) with Hawkins (2017 runner-up) and Heath (2014, 2015 and 2016 winner)
Long course winners
Edition Year Men's winner Time (m:s) Women's winner Time (m:s)
1st 2005  Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) 27:43  Tirunesh Dibaba (ETH) 21:35
2nd 2006  Kenenisa Bekele (ETH) 26:08  Gelete Burka (ETH) 19:01
3rd 2007  Kenenisa Bekele (ETH) 28:14  Gelete Burka (ETH) 23:25
4th 2008  Kenenisa Bekele (ETH) 27:42  Gelete Burka (ETH) 19:58
5th 2009  Abebe Dinkesa (ETH) 26:51  Linet Masai (KEN) 19:02
6th 2010  Joseph Ebuya (KEN) 28:41  Tirunesh Dibaba (ETH) 21:37
7th 2011  Mo Farah (GBR) 25:41  Linet Masai (KEN) 20:24
8th 2012  Ayad Lamdassem (ESP) 25:44  Fionnuala Britton (IRL) 21:32
9th 2013  Bobby Mack (USA) 24:27  Fionnuala Britton (IRL) 20:40
10th 2014  Chris Derrick (USA) 24:11  Gemma Steel (GBR) 20:35
11th 2015  Chris Derrick (USA) 25:31  Emelia Gorecka (GBR) 21:26
12th 2016  Garrett Heath (USA) 25:29  Kate Avery (GBR) 21:05
13th 2017  Leonard Korir (USA) 24:03  Yasemin Can (TUR) 20:36
Short course winners
Edition Year Men's winner Time (m:s) Women's winner Time (m:s)
1st 2005  Nick McCormick (GBR) 12:22
2nd 2006  Nick McCormick (GBR) 12:16
3rd 2007  Serhiy Lebid (UKR) 12:20
4th 2008  Andrew Baddeley (GBR) 12:52
5th 2009  Andrew Baddeley (GBR) 12:17
6th 2010  Ricky Stevenson (GBR) 13:20
7th 2011  Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) 13:12
8th 2012  Asbel Kiprop (KEN) 9:20 (3 km)
9th 2013  Genzebe Dibaba (ETH) 9:46 (3 km)
10th 2014  Garrett Heath (USA) 11:51 (4 km)
11th 2015  Garrett Heath (USA) 12:11 (4 km)
  • All information taken from official website.[9]


  1. ^ Hedley, Nicola (2007-12-20). Burka seeks third consecutive cross country win in Edinburgh. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  2. ^
  3. ^ Event Information. Great Run. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  4. ^ IAAF Cross Country Permits Archived 2010-03-09 at the Wayback Machine.. IAAF (2009). Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  5. ^ Ramsak, Bob (2005-01-15). Kipchoge and T. Dibaba carry off thrilling victories. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  6. ^ The Course. Great Run. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  7. ^ Bupa Great Edinburgh International Cross Country. Spikes Magazine. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  8. ^ Landells, Steve (2009-01-10). Dinkesa shocks while Masai marches on in Edinburgh Cross Country. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  9. ^ a b c History and Tradition. Great Run. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  10. ^ a b Ramsak, Bob (2005-01-14). Mighty list of cross country stars assemble in Edinburgh - Preview. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  11. ^ Shaheen, Ochichi join Edinburgh cross country fields. IAAF (2006-01-03). Retrieved on 2009-12-23.
  12. ^ Gillon, Doug (2006-01-14). Bekele survives searching challenge from Shaheen in Edinburgh. IAAF. Retrieved on 2009-12-26.
  13. ^ Wenig, Jorg (2011-01-08). Kipchoge and Masai prevail in snowy Edinburgh. IAAF. Retrieved on 2011-01-09.
  14. ^ Mulkeen, Jon (2016-01-09). Farah beaten as Heath secures hat-trick in Edinburgh. IAAF. Retrieved on 2016-01-10.

External links[edit]