That was so stressful!! Watching Billy race. Particularly when he's a marked man. "Billy Craske won't win this year" one Dad was overhead to say. And we were aware that one athletics club had trained their team with Billy specifically in mind - running the route several times a week. Everyone, it seemed, was up for it.
So Billy stood on the start line of the Cornish Cross County Championships having won the last two years by a clear margin. That doesn't make it any easier. In fact the weight of expectation was a heavy burden and just before the race he was quite upset.
He waited on the line for the off. Sit in the pack, wait until you hit the end of the slope second time around and then hit the Billy Burners. That was the plan. Billy has many supporters, which is really nice, but maybe even they were concerned when he passed the terraced supporters on the first circuit in fourth place. But as he passed me, I gave him the big thumbs up. Perfect. On the second pass, he'd moved into second (another big thumbs up) and by the time he reached the white house, he'd fired up the Billy Burners and was gone! It was a really great performance. One well beyond his years.
Billyman running through some post race analysis with Findog, who seems to be following in the footsteps of his big brother.
That's a county hat trick - three years on the trot. Which is a very tough thing to pull off. Of course there will be a lot of parents pleased to see the back of Billy as he moves in the summer to Secondary School! But I have some very bad news for them - Findog is following hot on the Billyman's trail - and he quite likes winning too! Don't say I didn't warn you!
Billy's greatest challenge still remains - to get into the Plymouth Argyle Youth Squad! He's there training with the squad twice a week now, and he's doing great. But as the main coach stated, "We don't need good, we've got good. We're looking for something different." I think he gives them that, but then I am his Dad (and running race strategist!) so I would say that wouldn't I? We'll know in a few weeks time whether they think he's different too. Until then, he's just got to let his feet do the talking!.. and hope that Argyle stay in business!