Category Archives: Racing

Race details, news and results

British and Irish Masters Cross Country

Great news from the weekend: The club had two representatives at the British and Irish Masters Cross Country in Bellahouston Park. Russell Whittington was running in Scotland’s V35 team (and came away with a Silver medal), and Julia Harris representing Wales in the V40’s.

It was certainly a wet and windy Saturday afternoon, so huge congratulations to everybody who took part.

Russell sent in this superb event report:

On Saturday I had the amazing opportunity to run for the Scottish Masters team in the British and Irish Masters Cross Country in the home surroundings of Bellahouston Park. The race is split up into age categories in five year groups starting at V35 and going up to V70 for the men and V65 for the women. The event is made up of teams from Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

I was put in a strong looking V35 team along side David Miller, Jamie Reid, Robert Gilroy, Joe McKnight and Iain Connell.

The weather and course conditions were very challenging. The weather was wet and windy and the the course was muddy and hilly so all in all it was a proper cross country.

The first race was for all the women and the male V65 and V70 categories and was made up of one big loop and one smaller loop. The Scottish women got the team off to a great start with stand out performances from Lesley Chisholm third overall and second V35, Melissa White 4th overall and first V45 for the second year in succession and Fiona Matheson 5th overall and first V50. The F35 and F45 teams were both one point behind England in second place and the F50, F55 and F65 teams all took bronze medals.

Our own Julia Harris was representing Wales in this event and finished 75th overall in a time of 27:15.

The male race for categories V35 through to V60 was two big loops of the course. The race started at 12.45 and started on the pitch and put area. From there we headed uphill through the wooded area of the park followed by the downhill heading towards the House for an Art Lover. This descent was the trickiest part of the course as it was very muddy and several runners fell over in this section. After the House for an Art Lover we headed into a strong headwind past the Palace of Art and then up the second of the tough hills. The loop finished with a lap around the back of the cycle track before setting off on the second muddy lap.

I finished in 76th place in a time of 28:39. Peter Matthews was first home for Ireland in 24:54. First Scot was Jamie Reid who was 7th overall and 2nd V35. My V35 team finished 2nd overall one point behind the winners Ireland. The four to count for the team were Jamie Reid, David Miller, Robert Gilroy and Joe McKnight. Fortunately for me there were medals for all six of the team and so I am the very proud owner of a British and Irish Masters silver medal. The V55 team also won a silver medal and the V50 team won the bronze.

The event was followed by a dinner dance and awards ceremony at the Crown Plaza which I went along to with my wife Maureen. There was some very entertaining ceilidh dancing later in the night with more marks for effort than quality, but all teams got involved and the dance floor was always full.

Next year I think that the race is due to be in Belfast and I am going to give it my best effort to retain my place in the team and make the trip over the Irish sea for the event.

And Julia added:

Yes, it was a fantastic opportunity and although no medals for my Welsh team (I was put in with the young V40’s) and I slipped and went down my full length both times on the wee boggy downhill, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Cymru am byth.

Full results available on the Scottish Athletics website.

For more on Scottish Masters Athletics, they have a website here.

Jimmy Irvine Achilles Heel Bella 10K Race Report

Runners at the start of the race

Saturday 12th November saw the second running of the Jimmy Irvine Bella 10K, sponsored by Achilles Heel.  The race is named after the founder of Bellahouston Road Runners Jimmy Irvine and the race made its debut on the calendar last year to celebrate the 10th year of the club.

Bright autumn sunshine and slightly breezy weather greeted just over 400 runners on the start line in Bellahouston Park.
 
The race was won by Robert Gilroy (Ronhill Cambuslang Harriers) for the second year in succession in a time of 32:07.  Second home was Kieran Docherty (33:47) and third was Russell Whittington (34:38), both from host club Bellahouston Road Runners.
 
In the ladies race the honours this year went to Julie Doncaster in a time of 40:03.  In second place was Yana Thandrayen (Portobello RC) in a time of 40:30 closely followed by Sheena Jack (Fife AC) in a time of 40:48.
 
The male V40 category was won by Michael McLoone (Greenock Glen Park Harriers) who also finished 5th overall in a time of 34:50.  Andy Law (Mid Argyll AC) retained the V50 title finishing in 37:34.  Clydesdale Harrier Watson Jones took the V60 category with an impressive 45:58.
 
Katie Mathieson from Bellahouston Road Runners took the V35 female category with a time of 42:06.  Julia Harris also from the host club capitalised on good form by taking the V45 category in a time of 43:17.  The V55 category was won by  Margaret Deas from the Scottish Veteran Harriers completing the course in 52:07.
 
Given the number of purple vests on display it was no surprise to see Bellahouston Road Runners take both male (Kieran Docherty, Russell Whittington and Greig Glendinning) and female (Katie Mathieson, Ann Robin and Ciara Baxter) team prizes. 
 
Outside of the prizes all runners received goody bags and medals for their efforts, with an impressive spread of savoury and sweet eats, alongside teas and coffees on offer for all.  This years race proved to be extremely popular with all entries sold out in advance of the race.  Many returned for a second year, and we hope to see them all again for the Bella 5K next August and the 2012 Jimmy Irvine Bella 10K.
 
Full Race Results are here.
 
Race photos available for purchase from http://www.scottsportphotography.co.uk/

Glen Ogle Ultra Marathon

Craig Reid sent in this report from last Saturday’s Glen Ogle Ultra marathon.

Saturday 5th November saw the first running of the Glen Ogle Ultra Marathon. The 33 mile out and back route started in Strathyre at 8am and followed a scenic route towards Killin. Weather conditions were perfect on Saturday morning and over 120 runners lined up at the start line. Due to the larger than expected field the route had to be cut to around 31 miles.

I started at the back of the pack as I didnt want to set off too fast. The first 6 miles or so were very hilly and so it was difficult to get into a steady rythm. As I moved up through the field I met fellow Bella runner, Rebecca Jonson who was also doing the race. Miles 6 – 10 were very gradual and took us up through the glen and over the viaduct to the second checkpoint. My legs felt fresh and after stopping for water I pressed on.

Miles 10 – 18 were through the forest on a mixture of paths and trails. By this point I was completely on my own and was making good time on the paths. By mile 14 I hit a massive hill and actually had to stop and walk up it as my legs ached. This left me feeling full of doubt as I wasnt even halfway round and I was walking already, I began to wonder if I would even finish. Thankfully that was the worst uphill section and once I got to the top I soon got back to running and returned to the 18 mile checkpoint.

At 18 miles I took my first energy gel even though my legs were still feeling surprisingly good (apart from on that one big hill). I decided to try and run nice and steadily to the last checkpoint at 25 miles but the route was slightly downhill at this point and everytime I looked at my watch I was hitting between 6:30 and 7 mins per mile. At 24 miles I managed to catch another runner. He told me I was looking good and that the other guys werent far ahead so if I pushed on I could catch them. I thought at this point I was maybe in the top 20 or so but this runner informed me that by overtaking him I was now 5th!

At mile 25 I got to the last checkpoint. Unfortunately this was where I had left my drop bag so I would have to do the last 6 miles with a rucksack on my back. I wasted a couple of mins trying to find my last energy gel and bottle of lucozade and set of again. The last section was on road and by mile 27 I had caught the 4th place runner and could see 3rd a few hundred yards up the road. Somehow my legs still felt good and I was battering out 6:45 miles. Before I knew it I had passed 3rd and just had to dig in until the end. There were some tough hills in the last 2 miles and I kept thinking eventually I would hit the wall and the runners behind would catch me!!

Amazingly though, it never happened and I crossed the line in 3h 40mins taking 3rd place! I was (and still am) absolutely delighted. I collected my goody bag, had a seat and before I knew it Rebecca was also finishing in 3h 59mins, taking the 2nd ladies prize. Overall it was a very succesfull day along a stunning and challenging course. I would definitely recommend this race to anyone thinking of doing an ultra next year. Race website can be found at http://www.go33ultra.com.

Jimmy Irvine Achilles Heel Bella 10K Race Update

The race takes places in Bellahouston Park on Saturday 12th November starting at 11am.  We have 115 places remaining (at 21st October) of the 500 available.  There is just under three weeks until online entry closes on Wednesday 9th November.

Race Numbers

Due to the number of runners entered for the event we have decided to mail the numbers in advance of race date.  Numbers will be sent to the home address given when you entered the race.  If you have changed address since you entered please contact us at races@bellahoustonroadrunners.co.uk asap and the address will be amended prior to posting.  We will update the event webpage here and this News section to let you know when the numbers have been posted.  Please remember to bring your number on the day.

Course Details

After taking on board feedback from last years event, we have made a change to the course for this year.  Course maps are now on the event webpage here.

Series T Shirts

Series t shirts should be collected at the Palace of Arts after the race.  T shirts are available to those who pre entered both the Bella 5K and the Jimmy Irvine Bella 10K through Entry Central.

Post Race Refreshments

Remember to head back to the Palace of Arts for post race refreshments.  We will have the usual sweet and savoury selection as well as teas, coffees and soft drinks.

Spot Prizes

We have a number of spot prizes available.  Come back to the Palace of Arts after the race, drop your number in the entry box and wait for the draw.

Thanks to those who have already entered, we look forward to welcoming you on the day from everyone at Bellahouston Road Runners.

Please send any queries to races@bellahoustonroadrunners.co.uk.

Ben Nevis Race 2011

Chris Brotherston has just sent in his race report from the 2011 Ben Nevis Hill Race:

It seemed like a big ask with all that ascent using only two blistered feet, the rain plummeting from the heavens and the gallus mountain clothed in dank mist. This was it……the Ben Nevis Hill race, the thing you hear about as a kid and think to yourself “wow, these guys must be superhuman”. And then as you stand at the start line you see the super human athletes such as Finlay Wild (no relation to the humble Oscar or his long suffering wife) and Angela Mudge (whose dog is even faster than you) or Stuart Mathieson (just being pseudo sycophantic there Stuart). But they are in the minority the rest of us are human; some carrying injuries while others carry hangovers and overhanging bellies. But, that’s hill racing with its motley assortment of craggies on the crags, sloppers on the slopes…..and the illiterate alliteraters….

Anyway, back to the hill race……….and in a hill race everything is about feet….how many feet of ascent and descent…how are your feet…..what are you wearing on your feet……did you keep your feet (no I gave mine away to a passing tourist who got in the way on the bloody zig zags!)…wow what a feat (!).

Anyway back to the hill race….it starts as most race do and then finishes. In between there are a hell of a lot of feet (4370 feet of ascent, 1000 runners feet and 500 incredible feats). To some it is running up and down in an incredible 1 ½ hours, to others it is completing it in just under four hours, while all those in between have their own personal goals.

An experience it was; an achievement it was; an emotional experience it certainly was; a joyous pleasure…..well I think I will leave that feat to the imagination…….

Wouldn’t change it for the world though….

More details, results and… FEATures (boom *tisch*) about this famous hill race at http://www.bennevisrace.co.uk/

Clyde Stride 40

Grant MacDonald sent in this excellent race report from this year’s running of the Clyde Stride 40 mile ultra marathon:

I had been toying with the idea of an ultramarathon this year so when I found out there was one that started a few yards from my front door I thought it would be rude not to really.
So, the Clyde Stride. A 40 mile jaunt from Partick train station to the slightly more scenic New Lanark via the not very well signposted Clyde walkway.
About 100 of us gathered at the back of the train station and were set off running down the clyde battling against confused cyclists and dogs coming in the other direction. The 1st section goes along the clyde towards Glasgow Green and it was here I passed a few Bellas running in the opposite direction on their Saturday morning run, strangely none of them were tempted to turn around and join me. Otherwise it was an uneventful and almost pleasant run to the 1st checkpoint at Cambuslang. I shoved a banana down my gob and continued along the 2nd section towards Strathclyde Park. This section is mostly offroad trails and was a bit of a relief after pounding the tarmac. The only shock during this section was coming out of miles of serene woodland and suddenly finding yourself having to cross a massive roundabout with no marshals for assistance. After giving myself a pat on the back for not getting runover by a massive lorry I trundled on to the 2nd checkpoint where Elsie was helpfuly waiting to load me up with sugary things before shoving me in the direction of strathclyde park.
The race then follows the river through Barons Haugh Nature Reserve. It was around this point I suddenly heard the friendly voice of Matt W (who was doing the race in a relay team) say hello. Not someone I would normally expect to see at this stage in a race. He kindly slowed down for a chat before effortlessly bounding off into the distance. At this point I was still feeling really good and wondering how long it would last. The answer to that question was about 3 more miles. As I came into the final checkpoint i started to feel a bit sick and was starting to bonk a bit too. I tried to shove some food down me for the last 12 mile hilly section but was really struggling to swallow anything. I shuffled onwards and was confronted by a near verticle series of steps. At this point the most rational thing to do seemed to be to lie down and have a good cry, but probably due to dehydration the tears wouldn’t come so I had to carry on. After a seemingly endless series of ups and downs I eventually came into New Lanark, but here the race has a sting in the tail. Just when you think you are finished you are diverted back into the woods for another mile or so- I believe there may have been some fruity language coming out of my mouth at this point. But having a good swear lifted the spirits and I staggered over the line and was pleasantly surprised to have finished 9th in 5hrs 50mins. At the finish line a beer and a cup of tea was thrust into my hand and I thought- wasn’t such a bad day after all really.
I had been toying with the idea of an ultramarathon this year so when I found out there was one that started a few yards from my front door I thought it would be rude not to really.

So, the Clyde Stride. A 40 mile jaunt from Partick train station to the slightly more scenic New Lanark via the not very well signposted Clyde walkway.

About 100 of us gathered at the back of the train station and were set off running down the clyde battling against confused cyclists and dogs coming in the other direction. The 1st section goes along the clyde towards Glasgow Green and it was here I passed a few Bellas running in the opposite direction on their Saturday morning run, strangely none of them were tempted to turn around and join me. Otherwise it was an uneventful and almost pleasant run to the 1st checkpoint at Cambuslang. I shoved a banana down my gob and continued along the 2nd section towards Strathclyde Park. This section is mostly offroad trails and was a bit of a relief after pounding the tarmac. The only shock during this section was coming out of miles of serene woodland and suddenly finding yourself having to cross a massive roundabout with no marshals for assistance. After giving myself a pat on the back for not getting runover by a massive lorry I trundled on to the 2nd checkpoint where Elsie was helpfuly waiting to load me up with sugary things before shoving me in the direction of Strathclyde park.

The race then follows the river through Barons Haugh Nature Reserve. It was around this point I suddenly heard the friendly voice of Matt W (who was doing the race in a relay team) say hello. Not someone I would normally expect to see at this stage in a race. He kindly slowed down for a chat before effortlessly bounding off into the distance. At this point

I was still feeling really good and wondering how long it would last. The answer to that question was about 3 more miles. As I came into the final checkpoint i started to feel a bit sick and was starting to bonk a bit too. I tried to shove some food down me for the last 12 mile hilly section but was really struggling to swallow anything. I shuffled onwards and was confronted by a near verticle series of steps. At this point the most rational thing to do seemed to be to lie down and have a good cry, but probably due to dehydration the tears wouldn’t come so I had to carry on. After a seemingly endless series of ups and downs I eventually came into New Lanark, but here the race has a sting in the tail. Just when you think you are finished you are diverted back into the woods for another mile or so – I believe there may have been some fruity language coming out of my mouth at this point. But having a good swear lifted the spirits and I staggered over the line and was pleasantly surprised to have finished 9th in 5hrs 50mins.

At the finish line a beer and a cup of tea was thrust into my hand and I thought – wasn’t such a bad day after all really!

10K for 10 Years

Saturday 13th November saw the first ever running of the Jimmy Irvine Achilles Heel Bella 10K.  The race celebrates 10 years of both Bellahouston Road Runners and Achilles Heel.  Almost 400 runners took to the start in truly autumnal conditions in Bellahouston Park.  Rain, sunshine and windy conditions all played a part in the day’s performances.

The men’s race was won by Ronhill Cambuslang Harrier Robert Gilroy in a time of 31:37.  In second place was David Millar of Irvine AC with a time of 32:04, followed by Jozsef Farkas in third place with a time of 32:47.  The male vet 40 category was won by Kerry-Liam Wilson, also from Ronhill Cambuslang Harriers, in a time of 35:26.  Brian Craig from Irvine AC scooped the prize in the  male vet 50 category (38:49) with Kenny McVey from VP City of Glasgow taking the male vet 60 prize (43:00).  Host club Bellahouston Road Runners took the men’s team prize (Matt Williamson, Ciaran Dougherty and Russell Whittington).

The ladies race was won by Lindsay Morrison from Central AC with an impressive time of 37:36.  Lindsay was followed home by Michelle Sandison from Springburn Harriers finishing in a time of 38:22.  Third place was Bellahouston Road Runner Deborah Gray (38:56), who took the 1st female vet 35 prize, allowing Jill Smylie from Giffnock North to take the last of the open prizes with a time of 39:32.  Jacqui Thomson from VP City of Glasgow won the female vet 45 age group with a time of 39:41.  Denise Lindsay won the female vet 55 category (49:52).  The ladies team prize also went to the host club, Bellahouston Road Runners (Deborah Gray, Jane Simpson and Claire Wharton).

The race also formed part of a series with the Bella 5K held in August.  David Millar from Irvine AC and Claire Wharton from Bellahouston Road Runners took the series prizes with the lowest accumulated times from both races.

Thank you to all the runners for taking part.

Provisional Results are here.

Birkebeinerløpet, Norway

Elsie Downham ventured a bit further afield to our usual race reports…

I thought I would write up my latest (and now not so recent) racing experience as it was a bit different and very fun. And muddy. On 18th September I went to Norway to run an off-road/x-country/hilly half marathon race. I have a friend living in Oslo who told me about the event and twisted my arm to enter it back in the spring when running in the Norwegian hills for 13.1 miles seemed like a good plan.

The race is famous amongst Norwegians, and they are very proud that 8000 people run it each year (given that the Norwegian population stands at only about 7 million, I guess this is quite an achievement!)
So, the race is called, take a deep breath, the Birkebeinerløpet and takes place just outside of Lillehammer (a 2.5 hour train journey north of Oslo). There is a website to visit which has information about the race I did, as well as other running events (on the same day there is the Halvbirken, 11km and the Ultrabirken, 73km) and cycling and skiing races which take part at the same location http://www.birkebeiner.no/ – you can translate the page to English if your Norwegian is a bit rusty :)

I flew to Oslo on the Friday. We woke up very early on Saturday morning for porridge and sandwich making (Norway is super expensive so you always need to make sure you have a good food supply on you so as not to blow your credit card on a banana (£1.59 I paid for ONE banana on the morning of the race, not amused). We then got on a train (nice trains in Norway) to Lillehammer with lots of other runners. There was a very complex but well organised system for leaving your bags at the finish (the stadium in Lillehammer), and for dropping any extra layers just before the start which were then shipped back to the finish for you. We were then bussed up the mountain to the start at Sjusjøen, just less than 900m above sea level. 

It was cold when we got off the bus, and being a true northerner I’d already stripped down to my shorts. Lots of funny looks from sensible Norwegians in full length tights, long sleeves, hats and gloves. What a bunch of wusses! I was very glad to be sporting my new INOV8 Mudclaws – lots of boggy and muddy sections, very steep downhills, rocky and rooty singletrack, and some sneaky uphills too. I managed to more or less stick to a 5 minute kilometre pace and finished the race in 1hr48min28sec, which they seemed to think put me above average for my age group and I got a small silver cup :D (average finishing time for women aged 25-29 was 1hr59min02sec). There was a good spread for race finishers – soup, bread, cinnamon buns, bananas, and even showers!

So, all in all a long way to go for a race, but I’d definitely recommend it to anyone who likes a bit of variation in terrain, a good post-race feed, and Scandinavian blondes of course.

Hope to be back at training sometime soon…