I’m happy to report that I made my long awaited return to competititive representation to the purple machine at the Round Arran Relay at the weekend. This had coincided with me concentrating on coaching and coming back from a semi-serious knee injury but the team needed me at the weekend so rather than go and have a round of Golf on Arran I made myself available to run.
An early start to get the ferry and away we went. what with the number of call offs we still didn’t know the exact line up for the teams and this was sorted out by S.M.M. (that is Sergeant Major Milligan) on the ferry over. He had a lot of call off’s over the week and I must say he did a good job of ensuring that we had a full complement for the three teams we had out, including a stand-in on the ferry as a last resort should someone else not make it. I was dumped, without too much complaint I may add, from the Alfa males team to fill a place in the second girls team which then became a mixed team. I was given the short easy leg South 1, aye right! Setting of up a short sharp hill we settled into a 400 m flat section before what seemed like 6 miles of climbing and about 1 mile of flat or slight downhill. It was hot and hard but I did my best for the purple vest thinking that although I wasn’t fast I was well pleased that I ran and worked hard for the full distance.
I can honestly say that it was good to be back racing again, well I could say that 5 minutes after I had finished anyhow. It was good to cheer other Bella’s home and then meet up with the other 17 runners and a couple of spectators at the end for prize giving. Brilliant to see Claire get a stage winning award and to see the ladies team defend their title from last year.
Excitement was building before the placing came out as we thought that the girls had won but weren’t 100% sure. S.M.M. was delighted to see that the Boys team finished ahead of the girls team by a few minutes as he wouldn’t have been able to contemplate not doing so. He even made a point of saying to me that Claire Blue pulling out at the last moment had really helped him out. I asked why and he said well if she hadn’t then you would have been running for the guys, not the mixed team, and Peter who stood in at the last moment was a lot faster than me. Can’t argue with that and maybe just sometimes you say something your thinking before you have chance to think about it first? On the other hand we are talking about S.M.M. Yep great to be back running for Bella, even S.M.M. hasn’t put me off.