Stirling Freshers XC – 14/10/15

We had a great turnout for our first cross country of the year, with 20 runners making their way to Stirling for the freshers’ cross country!!

Well done to everyone who took part, especially all the new runners. Thanks to the drivers, Grant and Skye, for getting us all there and to Molly Adams and Lisa for providing some post race snacks to keep the morale high.

Despite Duncan missing the start, all of the boys ran really well. They made quick work of the cross country with Grant Boyne leading the way to finish in 4th place, followed closely by Gavyn Chalmers in 6th. Matthew O’Brian also ran really well in his first race for the club to secure the boys’ team their second place.

For the girls Annabel ran amazingly to finish 2nd, Skye Dick followed close on her heels to finish in 4th place and Lisa Christy finished in 6th. Combined they won the first team prize. The rest of the girls followed close on their heels, with all 13 finishing in fantastic times!

We’re all so proud of everyone who raced and made the event so much fun! Can’t wait to see more of you at the next few races!! Check out the dates for these on the fixture list!

Words by Lisa Christy

Stirling Freshers XC

Freshers Week 2015

Our Freshers Run is on Thursday the 17th. We’ll be meeting at 5.30pm just outside the Stevenson Building (the gym). We’ll have 3, 5 and 7 mile runs suitable for all abilities. All the runs will be led and back marked by club members, so you don’t need to worry about getting lost.

We’ll also be at the Sports Fayre so stop by for a chat to find out more about the club! The Sports Fayre is held in the Stevenson Building from 10am – 5pm on Tuesday the 15th and from 10am – 4pm on Wednesday the 16th.

 

Dumyat Hill Race 2015

Stirling University hosted the Dumyat Hill Race and final round of our ‘Des Gilmore Cup’ on Wednesday the 6th of May bringing a close to the Hares and Hounds running calendar for the academic year.

Gage Willox kindly drove the minibus despite not racing and provided some much needed moral support along with Alastair Thurlbeck and Des Gilmore.

The race that incorporates the Scottish Universities Hill Race began with a mixture of road and trail before the challenging 1,280ft ascent to the top of Dumyat. The burning in the calves was soon replaced by adrenaline as the runners charged down the hill with a few slips and slides on the way. Gage and Alastair were given some high quality entertainment as everyone ‘pinballed’ their way off the trees and down the steepest part of the course. First to cross the line was Grant Boyne (38.24) in 13th position overall and 6th university runner followed by treasurer Tom Callan (39.24) in 22nd and 10th uni. Mairi Gilmour (50.20) was the first female in for Glasgow after a fantastic downhill to overtake Lisa Christy after she lead the uphill (51.26). Mairi was 13th female, 5th Uni with Lisa 16th female and 6th uni. Duncan NG followed shortly after (52.03) to shave minutes off his time from last year showing constant signs of improvement. Audrey Ayres and Stephanie Breunig both ran exceptionally well on such a challenging course to finish close together in 66.05 and 66.35 respectively.

Dumyat

Grangemouth 10k

The weather did not look promising as a keen group of Hares and Hounds ventured out of the library and into the scenic streets of Grangemouth for the annual ‘Round The Houses’ 10k. There was an eager sense of anticipation to see what colour the famous t-shirts would be with some pre race betting taking place before the nerves began to kick in.

The gun went and everyone set off strongly, including Isle of Man ‘team girl’ and prize winner Katrina Ballantyne, however the energetic bounce in her stride seemed to prove too much for the timing chip that was left behind on the start line.

The flame glowing from the oil refinery resembled Mount Doom as the hobbits (runners) battled through the final few kilometres. Grant Boyne was the first of those wearing black and gold to enter the stadium and cross the line in a PB of 34.12 followed by Lauren Wilson making her debut at the distance in a very impressive time of 37.13 as she finished 10th woman. Designated driver for the day Richard Kelly was hot on her heels finishing shortly after in a time of 37.16. Adam Stark (38.22) put in a strong performance after a busy couple of semesters at uni followed by Sarah Laverty (39.47) who claimed third U20 woman. Ross Martin had a great run and proved that hard work pays off after he recovered from his start of season injuries to put in a time of 40.42. Duncan NG (41.07) followed up on his Isle of Man PB with an even better run as he shaved a minute and a half of the prior week. New women’s captain Lisa Christy (41.26) put in another typically impressive run and Orla Chapman, in possibly her final run for the club, broke 43 minutes to improve on her first year time by 10 minutes!! Ceilidh McConnnachie built upon her good run at Clydebank to come in shortly after in 44.09.

Although those green Haries deservedly won the SSS awards, the t-shirts were blue and the banter was #craicandgold. Special thanks to Richard for driving.

Grangemouth

National XC 2015

On a very wet and windy (Ideal running conditions) Sunday the 22nd of February 2015, a cohort of the Hares and Hounds made the journey to Falkirk’s main tourist attraction Callender Park. The under 20 women won a bronze medal (Sarah Lavery, 10, Katrina Ballantyne, 18 and Lisa Christy 19) in the 4.8 Kilometre race. In the senior races Alice Everrett and Rory Macmillan nursed their hangovers from the night before and ran well, claiming 90th and 130th positions in their races respectively. Alastair Thurlbeck ran exceptionally well and came 6th in the Under 20 Men 8 kilometre race, followed by Mr enthusiastic himself, Tom Callan, in 26th place.
Come on Glasgow!!

Words by Katrina Ballantyne

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BUCS XC 2015 – Brighton

On 30th January a group of enthusiastic Hares and Hounds runners settled into a whole 12 hours of bus travel all because of our commitment to be part of one of the biggest races in the calendarb – BUCS cross country, which this year was held in Brighton. After our epic journey we settled into a night in our seaside accommodation before, you guessed it, another bus to the start line.

The first team to race were the boys A team of Alastair Thurlbeck, Lachlan Oates, Kerrick Hesse, Tom Callan, Alistair Little and Will Bryant. The boys coped with the hilly 12km course fantastically, and one of the most exciting moments was seeing Lachlan briefly leading in the Glasgow colours. He finished in a very respectable 30th with Kerrick behind in 49th. Alastair Thurlbeck was third home for Glasgow in 79th. An overall team position of 16th reflects a great performance from everyone in a large field of excellent runners.

The second race was a 6.4km loop for the girls who competed well, against the now even muddier course, and were led to the finish by Lisa Christy, in 147th position, with a time of 28:37. This was followed by Orla Chapman , and then close behind her Mairi Gilmour, followed by Penny Timms. Good races all round allowed us to secure 32nd position as a team. Particularly impressive was Stephanie Breunig who secured an excellent time for her first ever cross country race!

Then we came to the final race of the day an 8km Men’s B Race in which Neil Wilson and Duncan Ng competed against the most rainy weather and most muddy conditions of the day to finish with two strong performances and excellent positions of 249 and 345 respectively.

All in all it was well worth the journey. A special mention must go to all committee members who helped with the organization of the trip, not least our captain Grant Boyle who, even though he unfortunately could not run due to injury, made it all the way down to cheer us on.

Words by Orla Chapman

 

Alan Scally Road Relay

The sun was shining down on the East End of Glasgow for the 46th Alan Scally – a race that also plays host to the Scottish University Road Relay Championships. The Glasgow girls were out to defend the title they won last year with the boys hoping to build upon their bronze medals. The race was a 4.8 mile loop with teams consisting of four male or three female competitors.

First year OM Mairi Gilmour lead the way for the women’s team running an excellent leg of 34:38 to leave the ladies in 4th place University. Sean Robinson opened the account for the men’s B team battling with the wind to complete his lap in 31:59. Meanwhile Grant Boyne covered the distance in 26:15 leaving the A team in a strong position to push on as we narrowly trailed our fierce rivals Edinburgh by 14 seconds. Alice Everett was next up for the women’s team completing her lap impressively in 34:30 making it hard to believe it was only her second ever race! After a good run at Cumbernauld the previous week Ross Martin (34:59) took over from Sean to produce another solid performance on his comeback from injury. Club Captain Mark Sutherland, who had phenomenally completed an ultra marathon the previous week, showed he still had plenty left in his legs to finish his lap in 28:31 leaving the men in 4th Uni. Despite being a little nervous before her leg Lisa Christy (32:53) provided another excellent run to secure a bronze medal, a great result with Edinburgh Uni securing gold. Rory McMillan made his debut for the Hares and Hounds in emphatic style as he finished in 28:51 for the B team while Tom Callan (28:24) extended his early season form while representing the A team after his impressive run the previous weekend. Simon Gardner ran the final leg for the B team in a time of 30:51 ensuring a strong team placing. The fastest Glasgow Uni lap of the day was run by Alastair Thurlbeck (25:49) as he secured a 4th place finish for the A team. An excellent run from the final leg Edinburgh runner secured their double victory over a strong St Andrews team.

Luckily we managed to get back before the rain really started and the days racing has left us all raring to go for the Scot Uni’s Cross Country which will be held in Dundee on the 22nd of November.

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Dunbartonshire XC Relays

A small group of us headed out to Helensburgh for the Dunbartonshire XC relays at Duchess Woods. The course was much more exciting than a typical cross country, with a steep climb through the woods, a fast decent and a stream crossing. It was sunny, warm and surprisingly dry, so we were all pretty keen for the afternoon’s racing.

I ran first leg for the guys team, whilst Borah May led out for the girls. (18.29) After a steady first lap I attacked on lap 2, to create a lead of over 20 seconds for the guys and record the fastest time of the day. (13.31) Mark Sutherland (14.35) worked hard to keep us near the front, and after passing onto Grant Boyne (13.57) for the third leg, we were only a few seconds back. Grant ran a great leg to put us back in the lead with over half a minute to spare, then it was on to Myles Bax (16.37*) for the final leg. Myles flew off into the woods leaving our nearest rivals in the distance. By this point we were confident of our ensuing victory, and patiently waited for Myles to emerge from the woodland. Except he didn’t. Due to a few unfortunate factors, Myles took a wrong turn. After what we’ll describe as a scenic diversion, he then rejoined the course at a later point before completing his 2nd lap to finish 3rd. Despite us technically failing to complete the course the, mens team were awarded bronze with the race organisers clearly accepting we were on track for the win. Meanwhile in the women’s race, Mella Slattery (17.48) ran a swift second leg to bring the team up into 4th position. Orla Chapman (17.49) then ran an almost identical time, with the girls finishing in a respectable 5th position overall.

All things considered it was a great race and we all ran well. We and the rest of Dunbartonshire will no doubt be making jokes at Myle’s expense for the rest of the season. However personally I will be keeping quiet, having previously took a wrong turn on the return leg of the 3k on the green’s out and back course.

National 4k XC relays

The weather was typical of an average Octobers day in Glasgow – wet. However this did not stop a group of enthusiastic Hares and Hounds making their way to Cumbernauld to compete in one of Scottish Athletics biggest cross country events of the year. 3 women’s and 2 mens teams set out to do battle against the elements and damp hilly course.

Skye Dick lead the way for the Women’s A team building on some good early season form completing her lap in 17:50, she was closely followed by Lisa Christy who had a great run in 18:21 with Christine Deng (21:11) not far behind that for the C team. Laura Muir took over from Skye and overtook several opposition with a strong run of 15:12. Freshers Katrina Ballantyne and Katherine Mitchell ran well for the B’s and C’s with times of 19:03 and 20:01 respectively. Nicole Gruszczynski was left to complete the race for the A team and done so emphatically in a time of 17:34 securing 16th place. Orla (19:30) and Penny (20:21) both finished the challenge excellently in such a strong field of runners.

In form runner Alastair Thurlbeck (THOR) opened the race for the mens A team in an incredible time of 13:52, opening up a solid gap on the Edinburgh Uni team in the process. Neil Wilson lead the way for the B team finishing his lap in a respectible 16:52 – just imagine what he could do if he wore socks! Aishan Patil (16:00) built upon his impressive midweek 5k for the A team and the ever improving Alistair Little ran well completing his lap in 16:32 as the rain began to batter the competitors. Grant Boyne took over from Aishan and clawed back some places completing his run in 14:20 for the A team while Tom Callan displayed some excellent talent running a superb lap of 15:03. Myles Bax (14:29) was careful not to wander off course and ran impressively to secure the guys a 19th place finish. Ross Martin (20:11) made his debut in the famous ‘Black and Gold’ to bring back the bacon for the B team.

All that running left a few of our athletes with a thirst which the GU more than happily quenched. Tom went on to prove that running was not the only thing he is fast at as he let out his inner fresher by asking what a ‘strawpedo’ was. A good night was had by all and the days racing has left us raring to go for the Allan Scally Road Relays next weekend.

 

MacAndrews 5k Road Relays

The Hares and Hounds started the season of in familiar fashion with a trip to Scotstoun for the MacAndrews 5K Road Relays. The undulating course always proves a tough test for stiff legs at the start of the season. The Woman’s team was an all fresher affair with Mairi Gilmour, Katrina Ballantyne and Christine Deng making their first appearances for the club. Mairi led the team out with a storming 22:22 before Katrina and Christine matched each other with 25:23. The Men’s A team was a mix of youth and experience with veterans Simon Gardener and Vitalijs Brejevs joined by new members Gavyn Chalmers and Tom Callan. Gavyn showed his potential with the clubs quickest time of the day in 18:10. William Bryant made an impressive debut in the B team alongside returning members Sean Robinson, Aishan Patil and Anton Ward. In the C team Brendan Chadwick showed he still had the speed despite an injury plagued summer, blasting out A 18:20. Mark Sutherland also ran a quick first leg to put the C team surprisingly high up the field. Very surprising for Club Legend Gage Willox as the ex-captain missed the start of his leg. Oli Seglah completed a solid C team effort and provided some pro photography too.

The highlight of the day came in when we found out there was free tea and cake, including the worlds biggest muffins!

Spirits are high and legs are fresh going into another exciting season of racing!

macandrews_6x4Words by Mark Sutherland