The eighty-seventh Senior Women's Cross-Country Championships took place at Harewood House in Leeds. This was the first time the venue had been used for the National and it was a very picturesque spot. The grasslands used in the grounds were designed by landscape architect Capability Brown. The 8km course was two laps and the event was sponsored by Saucony.
Defending champion Phoebe Law (Kingston AC & Polytechnic Harriers) had been injured and was not entered, 2018 runner-up Louise Small (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC) and third-placed Iona Lake (City of Norwich AC) were expected to feature again. Emily Thornhill Hosker (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC) was also considered to be a potential medallist as was 2017 winner Jess Judd (Blackburn Harriers). Area champions were Pippa Woolven (Wycombe Phoenix Harriers) - Southern, Mhairi MacLennan (Morpeth Harriers) - Northern and Katie Holt (City of Stokes AC) - Midland.
The weather on the day was glorious and Jess Judd led the runners up the hill and set the pace for most of the first lap. Keeping Judd company were Georgia Taylor-Brown (Sale Harriers), Emily Hosker-Thornhill, Pippa Woolven, Abbie Donnelly (Lincoln Wellington AC) and Leeds City AC pair Lucy Crooks and Georgia Malir. After the climb up the main hill and through the woods a leading group of six emerged with a ten-metre lead ahead of the main pack, they were Taylor-Brown, Woolven, Small, Hosker-Thornhill, Judd and Claire Duck (Leeds City AC). On the commencement of the second lap the group broke up with Duck falling behind and Hosker-Thornhill and Woolven breaking away from Judd, Small and Taylor-Brown.
At the top of the hill Hosker-Thornhill broke away from Woolven and moved further away on the descent going on to win in 28:17, 11 seconds clear of Woolven with Judd winning the battle with Small and Taylor-Brown for third.
26-year-old Emily Hosker-Thornhill told Athletics Weekly: "I just can't believe it. I was hoping for a medal but knew the field would be strong but Mick [Woods her coach] said 'just get up there and see what happens' and I felt good. "It was a beautiful but tough course and weather. All the way up the straight, I thought she was closing, so I had to keep on sprinting."