Friday, 17 May 2013

Kinnoull Hill race, May 16

Another bumper turnout of Harriers at the latest Championship race. It looks like this year is going to go down as a record for the numbers of club members participating in the Championship – so far we’ve had double figures for all the races and Thursday’s turnout of 18 Harriers has to be some kind of record at Kinnoull – we certainly got the attention of the organisers in the post-race announcements.

So, Kinnoull Hill was the latest race. It’s short, just 4 miles, and doesn’t have the very steep ascents of many other hill races, but it’s steep enough to get you working hard. We were lucky to get a glorious evening for it, and I’m sure the views from the top would have been splendid if we’d stopped to look. But, there was racing to be done ...

Up at the front, Will was leading the way and eventually came in in 7th position and was first Male Vet. Patrick wasn’t far behind and was first Male Super Vet. Phil T took a break from his Munro-bagging May to come in next, despite complaining beforehand that his legs felt like they’d been filled with concrete. Following his uncle closely was Daniel M, running well, to finish a wee bit ahead of Kerry, who certainly seems to have got her racing head back. Daniel and Kerry had come past me after the first mile or so, when I’d blown it trying to stick to Phil T. After that, Em and I swapped places a few times, up and down slopes, but I just managed to hold her off.

Gordon and Rhian were having their own wee tussle, with Gordon just winning out with a final sprint over the finishing stretch – the published time difference of 10 seconds is wrong, since they were within a few strides of each other at the finish.  Maddy was running her first Kinnoull race and did very well to finish so close to hardened hill runners like Gordon and Rhian.

Al, Nicola and Fi were racing each other for a large part of the race, with Fi pulling strongly on the ascents, but losing out to Al and Nic’s superior downhill technique. Peter G was making a welcome return to racing action and held off a slight under-the-weather Cathy, who in turn held off an injured Allan and a heavily-blistered Sav, and finally Liz came in jauntily, to round out a very successful event for the Harriers. Also running with was Amy Jones, who might be a member of HBT, but she’s been working locally and joining us for Thursday evening sessions and is a very welcome addition to the scene. Needless to say, we were also the noisiest club, out-shouting even HBT as our finishers were sprinting to the finish.

Full Harriers results:

7              Will Manners                  28:19
15            Patrick O'Kane              29:17
48            Philip Tipping                 33:19
53            Daniel Mestecky            33:45
57            Kerry Sweeney              34:13
59            Tony Wayte                   34:16
62            Emily Grieves                34:33
65            Gordon Morrison           35:07
66            Rhian Evans                  35:17
69            Maddy Watson              35:31
100          Alastair Nicholl               38:42
103          Nicola Watson               38:58
108          Fiona McDonald            39:55
112          Peter Gaylor                  40:12
113          Cathy Tilbrook               40:40
115          Allan MacInnes              40:54
116          Savannah Sweeney      41:06
119          Liz Mestecky                 41:58

Bupa women’s 10k Glasgow, May 12

After the excitement of the women’s running event the previous Friday, it was back to the sharp end for the Bupa women’s 10k in Glasgow.

In a masterstroke of organisation, Kerry had booked the CoCo bus, and Colin had volunteered to be driver, so a contingent of 12 Harriers assembled for the stress-free trip to Glasgow. The Women’s 10k (formerly the Ignis Women’s 10k) is one of the largest mass-participation events of its kind in Scotland. Despite the poor weather, the race still attracted over 7000 runners this year, including British Olympic athlete Jo Pavey, running in her fifth month of pregnancy.

Team Strathearn take on Glasgow
Maddy was first Harrier home in a very impressive time of 42.06 to finish in 40th position overall – a terrific effort. Next to finish was Nicola in 47.35, followed not far behind by Fi in 48.06. Also running were mother-and-daughter team Kerry and Sav, Elaine and Susan, in training for the Strathearn Marathon, Liz, Jayne, Kirsty, Fiona L and Fiona D.

The intended picnic in the park didn’t quite happen because of the weather, but the bus was a huge success – big thumbs-up to Kerry and Colin.

Full Harriers results were:
Maddy   42.06
Nicola    47.35
Fi           48:06
Kerry     49:08
Sav       49:08
Elaine   51:47

Susan   51:47
Elizabeth 52:25
Jayne    53:58
Kirsty     55:33
Fiona L  56:32
Fiona D 56:33

The two Fionas

The three Fionas

Strathearn Harriers Ladies running night, May 10

In a new venture, the club hosting a Ladies Running Night, open to all women and girls in the area interested in running. The event centred around a strictly non-competitive fun 5k run along Lady Mary’s Walk. Before the run, Maddy lead a warm-up session to get the circulation working and muscles loosened up and adult and junior members of the Harriers ran with newcomers to answer any questions about running with the club.
The event was Kerry’s brainchild, with the aim of showing that joining a running club is not just about racing, but is right for anyone who likes running and enjoys running in the company of like-minded folk.
Kerry worked really hard to get support and sponsorship from local businesses, and also from Run4It, Scotland’s biggest chain of running shops. Ian White, Managing Director of Run4It and coincidentally married to Kaz’s sister, said "Run4It are delighted to support Strathearn Harriers in their efforts in this area. We are committed to helping any event which supports helping get more ladies and girls running and improving their general health and wellbeing". 
After the event, there were refreshments and a free raffle will be held, with spot prizes generously donated by local businesses The Handy Shop, An Cnoc, Snip, Tack and Sew, Be Salon, Delivino and Crieff Hydro Leisure. 
In all there were more than 70 runners, with an almost immediate follow-up with three new juniors on Sunday. There was a terrific buzz about the event, and we'll be looking at ways of building on this success.