Four-time European Cross Country Championship medallist Jessica Piasecki (coach: Robert Hawkins; club: Stockport) has been named the British team captain for Saturday’s IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Aarhus, Denmark.
After a five-year absence from cross country, the 28-year-old has enjoyed a resurgent season on the grass, culminating in an individual 10th place finish and a team silver medal in December’s Euro Cross in Tilburg, the Netherlands.
Piasecki’s last experience of the World Cross came in 2007 in Mombasa, Kenya, where – as Jess Coulson – she finished in 26th place, but will make her senior bow in the competition in Aarhus.
Upon being named captain, Piasecki said: “I’m really happy and I couldn’t ask for any more than to be named captain of such a strong team.
“In 2007 as a junior at world cross I was really happy to be there and everything happens all at once and you let it happen, whereas now I approach this year’s event in a more professional manner and I want to do my utmost to finish as well as I can and put my mark on the event.
“The European Championships came around really quickly for me but now I want to make my mark on the World Cross. As a team, I think we have the potential to do really well across the board. Everyone needs to go in and run their own race and if they do that, as team captain I’ll be very happy.
“At the Euros we had a really good turnout across the board from the team and hopefully everyone can do themselves and the country proud in Denmark.”