With this race counting for both the club championship and the winter handicap, there was an impressive Bella turnout of 24 guys and 9 ladies. After a (mostly) straightforward distribution of race numbers up at the yacht club, and me recieving lots of envious comments about my fancy new Bella tracksuit (buy one here: https://www.bellahoustonroadrunners.co.uk/the-club/club-kit/), and some not so envious comments about the colour of my ridiculous new race shoes, the migration to the start area began.
A stiff breeze meant that the normally flat and fast course was likely to be a bit more tricky than usual. Everyone was shivering on the start line, subtly looking around for someone suitably large to hide behind in the wind, and simultaneously realising that unfortunately they were surrounded by scrawny club runners. Oh dear!
After a lap-and-a-half of Battery Park we were out on the road and up the one slight hill and down past the yacht club and onto the esplanade. The waves suggested the wind was at our backs to carry us (although I didn’t feel it myself) down to the turn point. So it was round the lone high-viz jacketed marshal who was acting as the human turn point, and back into the wind
It looked like there were some pretty serious battles going on at the faster end of the race, with an extra-fast field this year from all over Scotland (well, a few folk came through from Edinburgh). And it turns out Callum Hawkins set a new course record in a staggering 23.58.
After the world’s longest raffle (seriously, did anyone who bought a ticket NOT win anything!?) it was time for the prize giving. Inverclyde MP (that means’ Member of Parliament’, not ‘Marathon Pace’…) Ian McKenzie was there to dish out the prizes, not before taking a good ribbing from the race organisers about how sh*t he is at running. Anyway, little did team Bella know, untold bounty was headed their way….
Carla was 2nd in the ladies race, and Katie won a gold medal for 1st place FV40, with Mary Senior hot on her heels taking the silver for 2nd FV40.
2nd team prize (Carla Molinaro, Katie Mathieson and Louise Ross)
3rd team prize (Craig Reid, Bruce Carse, Bruce Carmichael, Iain Burns, Russell Whittington and Grant MacDonald)
There may well some male vets prizes to follow too, but Bella club captains were severely reprimanded for not filling in the entry forms properly with age group categories.
It sounds like there were PBs galore in some tricky conditions which is great to see. Your captains are proud, well done folks!