Race reporter: Alastair ‘TJ’ Pringle
Our Senior Men and over 40s teams walked away with top prizes this year at the annual SHR do and prize giving which took place after the Meall a’ Bhuachaille race, the last event in the SHR championship.
The whole event was held at Badaguish by Glenmore in the heart of the Cairngorms. With snow topped mountains amid the Scots pine it was a perfect setting. The race itself is a tough old sod for the Cairngorms, which I normally think of as quite runnable. It’s 13km and 720m climb, with the first 3 or 4 km on track which goes far too quickly, a steep up and then a long rough bog ‘n boulder ridge before a steep ankle twisting bog and heather descent. The last mile is back on the track and a chance to pick up some pace (and take some Westies) for the finish line.
Finlay Wild broke the course record at milliseconds over the hour, followed by James Espie and Rob Sinclair. Caroline Marwick from Inverness Harriers was first woman home.
We had a top squad of Shets for this medium length race and positioned well across all categories. First Shet home in 6th place was Rob Simpson, with Jethro in 11th, Kenny 15th and Mike Deason in 17th. Chris Pantrey 20th and John Connaghan 21st also made it in under 1:10.
Running order thereafter was Steve Winter (28), a rather hungover Ali Macleod (42), Iain Pender (44), Ross Cruickshanks (45), Bill Breck (52), Walter Henderson (67) TJ Pringle (67) and Kirtsy Coombs (161) in a field of over 250 – nice work all.
While we were out having fun on the hills, Lorraine was busy trying to put out a fire which could have ruined Walter’s dream van conversion – we all now know the results of using an industrial propane canister on a camping gas stove. Lessons learned?
Back to the Prize giving, where Kenny challenged gender stereotypes and asked for a bottle of white, rather than red wine for his prize – well done Kenny – and later on there was a People’s Vote to challenge the rules for the U23 women’s prizes. Modern Times indeed.
The full results for the SHR Championships are available online, but big congratulations to Jethro and Bill in particular for their individual prizes and to the Men’s teams for taking gold in the senior and over 40s. Also a big Shet shout out to Jill Stephen for taking the top women’s prize yet again.
We managed to celebrate just a little bit with a three course meal followed by dancing afterwards to the Darloch ceilidh band. That’s where things got a little out of hand, with Jill Stephen being used as a weapon by Bill B in one of the dances – and then a wardrobe malfunction in the shape of Bill dancing in Crocs and managing to take down 4 of us together in some weird helicopter move. The crowd loved it (and John C has the video footage on both of these to prove it for a small fee).
Somewhat jaded we regrouped on Sunday morning with a few friends to head out for a recovery run (literally) some 20k up towards the Lairig Gru, around Chalamain Gap and back for a puke inducing sprint round Loch Morlich. Great end to a great weekend.
I’ll tell you the one about Walter running up the A9 with his petrol can in hand another time…..
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