Five hardy Harriers (me, Sadie, Mel, Yan and Andrew) turned up for this tough race in the Pentlands round Baddinsgill reservoir on Sunday, involving hills, bog, deep heather and grass, and stony track. On the day, summer arrived with unbroken sunshine but thankfully a strong breeze! With 55 runners at the start, this was a smallish field, probably due to the Ochils hill race the day before. Chris D turned up to give us some much needed support. As usual I was worrying about going off the route (in search of more barbed wire??), falling, getting stuck in a bog, and just managing the distance in the heat!
We started pretty much on time and off we went. During the early part of the race I was feeling quite strong and it was fairly runnable. This report will be fairly short on detail now, as what followed was 2 plus hours of struggling through extremely boggy ground, sinking up to thighs in bog, falling over on any rocky ground I could find and then meandering in a random fashion towards where we thought the finish might be. Chris met us at the top of West Cairn hill (I think!), and provided some welcome direction about where best to head down from there. Thank you Chris! After my second fall, I stopped as I couldn’t feel my right arm after smacking it on the rock, and had a wobbly moment. Sadie caught up with me before the final hill and I have to say I was really glad to see her!! We ran pretty much together after that, chasing the 2nd lady. Just as we were nearing the last part of the race, we were passed by another lady who clearly had been saving her energy for this moment. What followed was a fairly amusing guessing game between us four ladies about which way we should head to the finish, each of us knowing we were competing for places. Then we all ran as fast as possible down to the welcome sight of the finishing flags (but not before one more fall in the mud – Yan, I believe you had a small tumble here too?!).
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This is a tough but great race, and the views on such a clear day were amazing! The Harriers picked up some prizes, yay!
Yan: 23rd, 2:03:10 3rd MV50
Gill: 40th, 2:23:58 2nd FV40
Sadie: 41st, 2:24:06 1st senior lady!
Mel: 51st, 2:43:20
Andrew: 53rd 2:50:50