A great sunny morning and a record turnout for Pollok Park Run no.9 with 107 runners. Due to re-measuring the course the route was slightly longer than previously, but despite the extra 50 metres or so, Robert Turner still set a new course record of 16:21, and beat Robert Gilroy in the process! I had my own personal battle with fellow V45 George Taylor of Giffnock who I had never raced against before, but noticed that George had run 2:41:50 at London Marathon 2007, so I was determined to give him a run for his money. We swapped places several times, but in the end George clocked 17:30, and I finished just behind him in 17:31 for 7th place.
Saturday, 31 January 2009
Tuesday, 27 January 2009
Over the past few weeks I have started ramping up the miles for London Marathon on 26th April 2009. I have also set up a JustGiving page to support Gordon Shannon, and to raise funds for Tak Tent Cancer Support Unit at Gartnavel Hospital, Glasgow. My aim is to complete the marathon in under 2 hours 50 minutes.
Gordon was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2007, and following treatment recently tried to get back to some running with Ayr Turkey Trot and Nigel Barge 10k races in December 2008 and January 2009. However at the Jack Crawford 10k a couple of weeks ago Gordon collapsed with a seizure and was airlifted to the Southern General, and so Gordon won't be attempting any more races in the near future.
Please support Gordon and his family by visiting my JustGiving page.
Sunday, 25 January 2009
After my 14 mile jog around the Devil's Burdens Relay yesterday, I wasn't expecting anything much from today's short sharp cross country at Bellahouston Park. And in fact at 12.30pm the weather was abmysal freezing cold rain, and the prospect of running wasn't looking at all appealing. However at five to one, the weather suddenly improved, and at 1pm bright low winter sunshine greeted the runners on the startline.
Serious Scottish Athletics cross country races like this have a great procedure at the start, with a shout of "Stand Ready", and then a real starter's pistol going off, so there is absolutely no doubt when the race begins. Unfortunately all the other runners hurtled off at breakneck pace, whereas I planned to start steadily and work up through the field. After 50 metres or so I had a sense that I might in fact be last, but turning round noticed one or two stranglers floudering along behind me.
The conditions underfoot were wet and boggy so it was tough to generate any sense of pace whilst wallowing through the mud. Gradually I picked of a few runners and for a while got towed along by Billy Coyle of Shettleston hoping he would drag me across the gap to reach Paul Thompson who was perhaps 50 metres ahead. My plan was to take it fairly easy on the first and save myself for the second. But in the second I couldn't press home any advantage, and didn't make any ground on Paul who finished about 20 seconds ahead of me. I finished 48th overall in 15:15, and 5th Vet. And since looking at the results, I realised that Paul Thompson and Billy Coyle were the only older athletes ahead of me.
We stopped to watch the opening stages of the women's race, but halfway through the first lap it was clear that Freya Murray had an unassailable lead, so we wandered off to Pollok Park for coffee at the Burrell.
Saturday, 24 January 2009
Results | Photos | More Photos
Cold frosty weather for my 8th Devil's Burdens Relay on the trot. Various last minute call offs meant we were struggling to get any complete Westerlands teams, but in the end we did get 5 teams around the 4-stage course.
The race starts in Falkland with an abrupt ascent of East Lomond. The Carnegie pair John Hargreaves and Tommy Lawrence set the pace and came in first to the Leg 2 changeover, hotly pursued by Adam Ward and Angela Mudge of Carnethy, with Jamie Stevenson and Dave Eiser of Ochils finishing 3rd, all on 37 minutes. Steffen and JD ran our first leg, but we didn't have a Leg 2 runner so David Riach and I ran the 2nd Leg together down to Scotlandwell where we turned around and went straight into the 3rd Leg. We did reasonably well until West Lomond, but after that several teams started going past on the long diagonal descent. Brian Bonnyman took over for our 4th stage and did pretty well at closing down most of the teams who had slipped past.
After completing Leg 3, David and I jogged back along the lower Leg 4 trail back to Falkland with Tom Owens. 10 miles for Leg 2 and 3, and 4 miles jog out.
Saturday, 17 January 2009
Felt OK for the first 3k or so, but then ran out of steam. Couldn't keep up with Andy Birnie or Marco Consani, and struggled to match the pace of Donald Petrie from halfway. Tried to rally and up the pace for the final kilometre or so, but still got pipped in a sprint finish by both Casey Morgan and Bryan Burnett, and finished almost 2 minutes slower than last year. Not a great race really, but not as bad as Gordon Shannon who collapsed with a seizure and was airlifted to the Southern General.
Saturday, 10 January 2009
Saturday, 3 January 2009
My first road race of 2009, and first road race in ages. Thought I would hold on for 11th place, but faded on the 2nd lap and dropped back to 14th in 35:58. A bit slower than last year, but the course was slightly more twisty and I was much less road fit.
Friday, 2 January 2009
A very rare thing, but I managed a first V40 place in a hill race! Finished 11th in 18:03. Pretty firm frozen underfoot conditions meant that both the men's and women's records were broken. This was my 8th Greenmantle Dash in a row and I managed a PB by 30 seconds.