Senneleys Park in Bartley Green, Birmingham hosted the fifty-seventh Senior Women's National Cross-Country Championships. The 200-acre park contains large expanses of short mown grass and woodland and is criss crossed by three streams. Provincial Insurance Limited sponsored the event and the women's race attracted a record number of entries. Of the 1,100 applications over 600 finished the race.
Defending champion Helen Titterington (Leicester Coritanian AC) made a last-minute decision not to take part. This left the way open for the leading contenders including inter-counties champion Angie Pain (Leeds City AC), area champions Julie Asgill (Stretford AC) - Northern, Sally Ellis (Birchfield Harriers) - Midlands and Christine Kennedy (Parkside) - Southern.
The earlier races turned the course into a quagmire and the hilly section made for a challenging race. Pain had started off slowly but when she reached the top of the first hill, she felt confident enough to go away, sensing that the thick mud was already taking its toll on some of her rivals. Lesley Morton (Westbury Harriers) was with Pain as was Sally Ellis.
Pain went away from Ellis after a mile and was never challenged winning in 23:58, with Ellis second 12 seconds behind. Christine Kennedy was third with Morton fourth.
26-year-old Angie Pain told Athletics Weekly "'For about half a mile it was a battle between me and Sally but then when I got in front, I began to hope everyone else was feeling as bad as I was. That was very hard work. It was so tough."