Unfortunately, Gillian Grant had to pull-out but Fiona Mackenzie joined some friends on this ever popular rural autumn half marathon. An out – over a bridge – and back course, although humply, was well received and followed by an extensive prize list, goodie bag and a ceilidh in the evening. What else could you ask for! Recommended. You can see a full photo-report at roadrunpics
Fiona said: “My friend Fen had always said this was one of her favourite races, so I thought- I might as well give it a whirl. Always well subscribed I didn’t think I’d get in at first go, but just over 6 weeks ago I got notification that I was in!
Oops never mind, a hasty training schedule was arranged, then altered a wee bit to make it realistic- this being my year of rehab, I’m not out to break records- I just want to do it, survive & not make an arse of myself in the process!
The day came- there was a last week pull-out from Gillian as she has been unable to train, so Norrie & I travelled up through the beautiful autumnal perthy-angusy area to the Glen Clova hotel. It’s very well organised, it’s a perfect half marathon course. Imagine someone putting a hotel at the start & finish of a half marathon- marvellous idea!
Massage available before & after-I went before as I had a slightly sore hamstring. After a very sore 20 minutes where lots of infirmities were pointed out to me I thought it best to put that to the back of my mind & warm up. Soon it was time for the off- the race director was visibly telling us something, however I couldn’t hear it, & at 12.00 EXACTLY, we were off.
The race traverses the largely single track road from the Glen Clova hotel to the bridge & back on the other road to the Glen Clova hotel. The route-as many are in Scotland- was humply and mostly against the breeze [not bad] on the way out to the bridge. I think the road went up all the way but it was difficult to tell as there was so much humpliness. Once we went over the bridge at the turn, the breeze seemed to be at our backs- surely an unheard phenomenon?? Anyway, the mile markers seemed to turn up just when I had thought of them, all accurately placed apparently. [Perhaps I should think of them quicker?]
My heart rate transmitter fell down after 2 miles so I didn’t look at my watch until 6 miles. I was at 55 minutes at 6 miles, 94 minutes at 10 miles & then I got tired…so managed to pull it together for some semblance of a sprint finish at the end & got in just a shade under 2 hours & 5minutes.
Having booked into the luxury of the bunkhouse, I had my own loo just before the race-no queue & I had a hot shower just after the fab soup & roll. The goodie bag was ace as well including a commemorative mug, with the option of a race tee-shirt if you pre-ordered. The prize list is extensive & seems to encompass the whole of the coops drinks section, with the team prizes being quite extensive. Perhaps we need to bring in the fast boys for next year…..
There is a ceilidh in the evening which got going shortly before the band finished but the craic in the bar was good & I did manage a small portion of a Gay Gordon. Good race, definite negative split potential. I’ll be back!”
Some additional photos:
The first picture is race day-at the end / The next is why it can be good to stay over… & the bunk house – very basic accommodation – bring slippers – that concrete saps the life out of your feet!