Athletics - Gorecka looking to defend European title in Budapest

Emelia Gorecka spearheads a 36-strong Great Britain team at the European Cross Country Championships in Budapest, bidding for a third straight trip to the podium this weekend.

Cross-Country Skiing - Gorecka claims European Junior Cross Country win

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Emelia Gorecka of Great Britain (AFP)

Gorecka, 18, is Great Britain's only defending champion in action in Hungary but she will be part of a squad looking to reinforce their status as Europe's top nation, having collecting four team titles 12 months ago when the entire squad secured medals.

Two years ago Gorecka was third behind teammate Charlotte Purdue while last year she sealed junior gold and having been named in the junior squad for Budapest, alongside Jenny Walsh and world junior 800m silver medallist Jessica Judd, she will be looking to defend her title.

"Budapest has always been the aim for this part of my season," said Gorecka, the world junior 3000m bronze medallist.

"Every other race has been a stepping stone, so I cannot wait to freshen up and go out and compete. The team is looking very strong, which is very exciting."

Senior men's team manager Terrence Mahon, recently confirmed as UKA's endurance coach, said: "This will be my first European Cross and I'm looking forward to getting to know the athletes.

"As a team we have a very strong record in this event. We've finished top of the medal table for the last four years and have achieved a clean sweep of medals on three occasions in the last four years.

"I hope that tradition can continue this year and cap off an exciting and successful year for endurance running in the UK."

Full team:

Senior Men: Tom Farrell; Keith Gerrard; Tom Humphries; Jonathan Taylor; Andy Vernon; Steve Vernon

Senior Women: Elle Baker; Louise Damen; Caryl Jones; Rosie Smith; Emily Wicks; Katrina Wootton

Under-23 Men: Nick Goolab; Dewi Griffiths; Jonny Hay; Simon Horsfield; Scott McDonald; James Wilkinson

Under-23 Women: Hannah Alderson; Jess Coulson; Lauren Howarth; Lily Partridge; Beth Potter; Hannah Walker

Junior Men: Ian Bailey; Kieran Clements; Charlie Grice; Charlie Hulson; William Paulson; Luke Traynor

Junior Women: Rhona Auckland; Alex Clay; Emelia Gorecka; Jessica Judd; Annabel Mason; Jenny Walsh

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