Emily's behind: a picture, as ever!
So this race would bring my three day weekend up to 60 miles. I wasn't really anticipating running my best, and, what would you know, I didn't.
Its a good race – which is one of the reasons it was a club championship race for Porty. We have tried to pick decent races for the championships to encourage folk to try something maybe a bit off their radar. This is organised by runners for runners with little to no hype but a great course with enough variety of surface to keep you focussed round its 5.9 miles of trails, roads and hard pack paths. There's attractive scenery of the Ochil Hills and the Gartmorn Reservoir but you probably didn't take your eyes off the paths for long enough to see it.
Thanks to Kathy for pic
The hardest part of the day was getting out of bed after only a handful of hours of sleep. I had sorted arrangements with Derek on Thursday and he picked up myself and Chloe C (Lothian) at 8.35. There was some heavy snow on the way through but the sun would come out from time to time as well. There was a dusting on the top of the Ochils and a bit of a cold wind. Once again a better day to be a runner than a marshal.
Graeme and Kathy
Duncan and Derek
This race has changed since I last ran – it used to use the Diageo premises for changing and showering and a wee hall near the start line for afterwards. Now it uses the Sauchie Hall on Mar Place – they may have needed more room for the fabulous post race spread. And no showers – but that's a small price to pay.
Shortly after we started I noticed at least one v50 get a good distance ahead. Also Andy J whom I didn't see very much of at Devilla. I hoped I would get a chance to catch him later but remembered his strong suit is not climbing and he was getting away on the climb. Up to the reservoir wasn't as steep as I remembered but I was glad to get it out the way. First woman Edel caught up around mile 2 but it wasn't till mile 3 that she went past looking strong. I noticed a guy in an orange shirt I was exchanging places with looked very like Duncan from club. But he wasn't wearing a PRC vest so I wasn't absolutely sure it was him. I managed to hold it steady round the water and had plans to overtake a few folk on the largely downhill 2 miles to the finish.
Unfortunately my legs had other plans and after catching Duncan I don't think I caught anyone else. At least one runner went past on the way to the line but I was happy to just survive. And it was Duncan finishing right on my tail in the orange shirt. Derek was next Porty in, just pipping Graeme at the post.
I was impressed but concerned to see Kathy there, as she had just had surgery on Wednesday. She promised just to take it easy but we all know that is impossible for certain runners including Kathy. Speedy recovery Kathy.
Douglas finishing. Wonder what time he did?
Kathy wasn't the only nutter there. Ultra Issy Knox had run earlier in the day and was possibly going to do another run later. Bear that in mind any Porties who made the excuse that they didn't want to miss their marathon training run. Its only a marathon after all.
With a bit of luck all the mad miles of the weekend will help speed me along next weekend at Alloa. I was sorry to hear Michael G has put himself on the injury bench with a hernia. I was hoping to keep up with him long enough to draft him on the famously windy back straight at Alloa. Chloe has kindly said she'll stand in for Michael but I'm not sure there's enough of Chloe to form a substantial wind break. If the weather hasn't changed significantly by then its all pretty much nailing jelly to the ceiling time anyway.
Great spread after the event. You could mistakenly assume the PRC champs are chosen for the quality of the post race home-bakes. Well done Chloe for second lady, after they eventually got some of the results sorted out, although I know how much it takes the shine off a prize when you have to tell the organisers that you have won it.
Website and results: http://www.weecountyharriers.co.uk/
Thanks to Chloe for taking this pic.