The forty-seventh Senior Women's National Cross-Country Championships took place in New Town Park, Runcorn, this was the first time the 'National' had been run in Cheshire. The testing course consisted of one medium lap and one large lap and was 5250 metres in length and consisted of fast grassland stretches and heavy mud.
Defending team race champions, Sale Harriers, were facing an uphill struggle to defend their title as two from last year's winning quartette were struggling, Jill Williamson out injured and Hilary Hollick suffering from flu.
Bright sunshine greeted the runners as the starter's pistol fired. Kath Binns (Sale Harriers) was the first to show, closely followed by Southern champion Penny Yule (Portsmouth Atalanta AC) and Christine Benning (Stretford AC).
Further back were Ruth Smeeth (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC), Christine Ward (London Olympiades AC), Ann Ford and Paula Fudge (both Borough of Hounslow AC) and Kerry Robinson (Pitreavie Amateur AC). As the runners started the second lap Binns maintained the lead and by the time 3km had been covered Binns had a 15 metre lead over Yule. A trio of runners tied for third place with Paula Fudge, Ruth Smeeth and Ann Ford doing battle. With half a mile to go Binns had increased her lead to 30 metres. 21-year-old Binns, an economics student at London University, won in 18 minutes dead. Penny Yule was overhauled by Ruth Smeeth with 600metres to go but she managed to hold off a challenge from Paula Fudge, Ann Ford and Regina Joyce to grab third place.
Winner Kathryn Binns told Athletics Weekly "I knew my only chance was to blaze away from the front, because I've got no finishing speed. Once someone goes past me, that's usually it. When Ruth moved up to second place, I remembered a Southern League race last November where I led all the way and then she caught and beat me on an uphill finish which was very similar to today's. But fortunately, this time I was far enough ahead."