News & Race Reports

Stirling Duathlon 2018 – Scottish Duathlon Championships

posted 16 Apr 2018, 14:20 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 16 Apr 2018, 14:20 ]

By Dom Sharkey

My 2018 season started on a frosty morning at Stirling University with the Scottish Duathlon Championships, also doubling up as a Team GB qualifier for the ITU World Duathlon Championships in 2019.  My race nearly didn’t happen after getting a puncture in the car on the way up on Saturday night – rocking up to the race on Sunday morning with the emergency donut wheel on the car wasn’t the coolest look but it got me there!  

The race was a new format to me – a (just over) 10k run, 42km bike, then second run of 5k to finish.  Both runs took place on a 2.5km circuit round the University grounds, with the bike route being a 2-lap affair on a rectangular 21km route on decent fast roads.  Running after the bike is fairly familiar to me by now, but having never had experience getting straight on the bike after a 10k run I approached it with a bit of trepidation.   

Other factors like what to wear (as it was near freezing at the start of the race - with a fast bike ride to come, cold arms and hands were a major concern) and why my transition area looked so bare compared to normal, as well as the fact I was using a Time Trial bike which I’d never actually ridden anywhere other than on the turbo also had me thinking a lot through every eventuality pre-race to avoid the significant potential for major embarrassment. 

Knowing that I usually feel like death after running a fast 10k, and can take about three days to recover, I was very keen to take it a bit easier in the first run in order to save enough in the tank to not have a disastrous bike and second run leg, so when the gun went I settled into a nice steady pace and let all the jostling and argy-bargy go on ahead.  I really liked the run loop – it had a mix of everything, some grass, half of a running track, a short but steep hill (up and down it) but was mostly tarmac, and with 4 laps to do it seemed to pass quite quickly to me.  I ran well within myself and kept a consistent pace with my fastest and slowest laps only being 4 seconds different!  I started the bike in 34th place, and turning on to the open road for the first time I saw that beautiful sight that I love everytime it presents itself to me in a race – a line of about 15 or 20 people stretched out over the next mile or so of road in front of me, just waiting to be caught.  So I went to work on those and spent most of the next 20 minutes passing people. Looking down at my power numbers on the Garmin was quite encouraging as I was exceeding what I had planned to average, but feeling ok for it.  The second bike lap was a bit lonelier, with not many too people in sight. I was caught by two other very fast bikers, one went well on ahead, and the other was just in front when we reached T2.   

I realised the funny thing about Duathlons is that when you hit the final run, you already kind of have an idea of how good a runner everyone is – so everyone ahead of me after the first run was probably uncatchable, barring any miracles or disasters as they were obviously really good runners, but the two guys who had overtaken me on the bike I knew had run slower than me before, so I should have a decent chance against them.  This appeared to go to form, as the guy just ahead of me faded really early on in the 5k, and I was left in a sort of no-mans-land not being able to see the next guy in front.  It was at this stage that the winner of the race passed me on his final lap so I spent the next few minutes calculating what sort of ridiculous times he must have done to end up about 9 minutes ahead of me.  I was on the kilometre count-down by now thinking, only 4 to go, only 3 to go, and then I noticed the really fast biker from earlier ahead of me now within sight and seemingly not running too well, so this gave me another carrot to go after and helped maintain the pace. Hitting the short sharp climb for the final time I felt the quads crawling underneath my skin, on the brink of a cramp attack – thankfully the hill ended just in time before this happened – 10 metres more and things wouldn’t have been so pretty.  After this I was in the home straight final lap, knowing that no disaster could possibly befall me now and was feeling chuffed with what felt like a really good performance and this wee high got me to the finish-line.  Found out on the line that I had finished in 9th place overall which far exceeded my expectations.  Yet to find out if I made top 3 in my age-group and therefore qualified for the Age-Group World Champs, but regardless I was really pleased with my pacing and execution of the race plan and it was a great start to my 2018 seeing the winter training getting put to good use.  When I realised that pro-Triathlete Fraser CartmellElite winner of Ironman UK and several Ironman 70.3s finished 2nd in the race, I thought that 9th is quite fine for me. 

Run 1 – 40:59 T1 – 0:52 Bike – 1:06:58 T2 – 0:37 Run 2 – 19:01 

Finish time – 2:08:28 

Jack Crawford 2018 Results

posted 19 Mar 2018, 06:10 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 19 Mar 2018, 06:49 ]

The Jack Crawford 2018 10K race took place on Saturday 10th March with four CRC members making the journey up to Bishopbriggs.  The race organisers had a tough lead up to the race in the aftermath of the 'Beast from the East' weather system causing heavy snow the previous week in Glasgow so a lot of clearing up and shoveling was required.  Thankfully they did a great job and the race went ahead with underfoot conditions safe given the recent weather.

The weather wasn't great, with a strong easterly making the first 3-4 miles tough fighting into a tough head wind.  Thankfully the last couple of miles were more favourable with the tail wind helping us a long to the finish.  It was also good to meet up the 'The Coach' Graham Crawford, whose club Springburn Harriers organise the race.  

Stuart McGeachy finished third overall in a time of 34:16.  Alex Souden finished 41st in 39:21, Ewan Smith 51st in 40:39 and Elaine McGeachy 114th in 47:31.  Special mention to another toonie Kenny MacLeod who finished 50th in 40:37.

Full results can be found here.

Scottish National XC 2018

posted 5 Mar 2018, 13:55 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 5 Mar 2018, 13:56 ]

The 2018 Scottish National XC took place on Saturday 24th of February with strong contingent of CRC members competing in the female and male senior events.  The weather was unseasonably sunny and mild, which made the conditions great for a fast run.  This weather was a far cry from the 'Beast from the East' weather system that was about to hit the country the following week!

Enough of the weather...on to the running! 

Jennifer Martin produced the run of the day in the Female senior event finishing an impressive 35th out of 271 runners in 43:32.  Considering this was Jennifer's first time at the Nationals, and running a XC race, then it was an outstanding run.  Even managed to get praise from the 'coach' Graham Crawford, who was spectating, so Jen must have done something right!

For the mens senior event the field was slightly larger with 623 competing.  CRC managed to drum up 6 big bruisers for the race, which meant we would qualify for a team.  Stuart McGeachy finished 95th in a time of 38:00. Garry Muir finished 178th in an impressive  time of 40:08.  Big Drew Dutton, just straight aff the boat, wasn't far behind in 198th in 41:00.  Ewan Smith finished up in 359th in 44:47, Alisdair O'May was 520th in 50:31 and Iain McKinnon was 566th in 53:19. 

For the Senior mens team event we finished 27th out of 38 teams.  Not bad considering some of the opposition and gives us a target to aim for next year.

For full results click here.

February Frenzy 2018

posted 10 Feb 2018, 09:18 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 10 Feb 2018, 09:19 ]

The 2018 February Frenzy handicap race took place on Saturday 10th February with a hardy bunch of CRC runners competing in the tough trail route around Lussa Loch.  The weather reports weren't promising earlier in the week with heavy rain and wind forecast.  However, the weather improved in time with the rain holding off and sun splitting the sky...for at least 5 mins anyway!!!

This year the committee decided to have an 'honesty' based handicap where the runners chose which time to start off at.  In addition, there was a prize for the runner who got closest to their predicted time, so there was an incentive not to be a total cheat :-)

Congratulations to Alison Semple who finished first in an impressive 58:10.  It was a great run by Alison, competing in the race for the first time, and showed great strength to hold off second place Mairi McKillop, who finished in 59:35.  Mairi also had a great run by knocking nearly 6 mins off her time from last year, which is incredible!  The General (aka Aldo Reid) finished third in 1:04:15 (real time 48:15) with a strong run after returning back from injury.  Hopefully the big man can put the injury issues behind him and get a bit of form back in the next few months.

Well done also to Elaine McGeachy who finished as the runner who was closest to their predicted time.  Elaine predicted she would finish in 54:30 and finished in 54:29!  Incredible...amazing how much a giant Toblerone can inspire this woman!

Well done to all runners who competed today and a big thanks to all marshals\timers (Robert Semple, Suzy Ferguson, Robert Mcdonald, Catherine McLean and Elgy O'May).  Also, thanks to all bakers who provided cakes and the McLeans for sorting out hot water for the tea :-)

Full results can be found here

Mac Tuff 2018

posted 22 Jan 2018, 05:29 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 22 Jan 2018, 05:33 ]

By Stewart Ireland

Sometimes when you say obstacle course race to someone they think jumping over walls. Sometimes people think getting muddy. Sometimes it's even getting electrocuted that someone's thoughts turn too. All obstacle races include some of these elements.

However they aren't about these things. Too me obstacle course races are a way of challenging yourself; your all round fitness, as well as getting so far out your comfort zone. Also to me it is a logically expansion to running.

Now I know it isn't the same as a 10k or half marathon but the element everyone seems to forget in a conversation about OCRs is the running. You climb a wall, and then run, you carry a 20kg sandbag a mile while trying to run, you then run, tow a car, then run, run through mud. You get what I'm saying. You do run and because you're doing all these things between running its challenging. Therefore I do view OCRs as running events. Just with other bits you them. Thus I'm, bleatingly writing this report.

I signed up for this event in July. Just before leaving to go travelling. Once we arrived in phuketfit I made training for it my priority. We trained hard while we were there and continued it once we got home. As December worn on and it got colder and a lot of food was being eaten the prospect of this event began to excite me. I hadn't really trained for an event this hard since Stirling marathon and although I was happy with how I did there I thought I may be in with a chance to place at Mac Tuff.

Race day, January 7th 2018. Ice and snow on the ground but sun in the sky. Not that it provided any heat. At its hottest, it was 2°C. I had 2 thermal layers on, leggings, t shirt and two pairs of gloves to try and keep my warmth. I wasn't when the most wrapped up 500 others had seen the forecast and got the thermals out. All apart from one man who decided going topless was the way forward. Well each to there own. At least I wasn't going to be the daftest one there. I warmed up and then waited at the start line for a maybe a bit to long and began to cool down in days, lack of, heat.

Fireworks and flares started the race, maybe in an attempt to warm everyone up and we were away. I had managed to get myself close to the front of the throng and was feeling comfortable at the pace being set. Running on gravel, tarmac and grass, we made our way to the first obstacle. An American football team, intent on knocking us over. I dodged my way around them, picking up a few places as others got knocked down. Then settled into the run. About half a mile later we changed from tarmac to gravel underfoot. I thought nothing of it and carried on, forgetting the conditions and the ice. My ankle suffered because of my lapse. Going over it.

Less than a mile into the race I had to stop and walk. I was devastated! I was running well. I was with the race leaders, feeling comfy and BANG. I could hardly walk on it initially. Forget running. I knew I wouldn't be able to do as well as I wanted or hoped and seriously considered pulling out.

I took some time and then tried to walk and then when that seemed ok run. I couldn't go as fast or as comfortably but I could run so I carried on.

Some ditches came and went, a few walls then a mile sandbag carry. Through a stream. I think this is where I stopped feeling the ankle. Maybe I'd run the pain off but, more likely the stream was so cold it numbed everything from the ankle down. After that I felt pretty good again. I completed the carry, climbed a few more things. Towed a car, ran some more. Then came the muddy bit. Obstacles of tyres, designed to make you crawl through mud. Tubes half filled with water. Great fun. Running through the mud was challenging. It was the gluppy sort that sucks your foot back the more you try and raise it. Once I was eventually through this there were monkey bars, ramps and then the biggest running portion of the day. It was, in essence off road hill repeats. I could feel the ache in my ankle but not pain anymore so I gave it a bash. Something from the running club stuck. After about 2 miles of hill repeats I was beginning to see sombre of the race leaders ahead.

Buoyed by this tried to keep the pace up as we ran through several forest fire breaks. That was amazing before coming out to jump the dragons back. This involved jumping from the top of one box to another with a metal bar to climb over between the tops. A cinder block carry followed before going to MacTuffs feature obstacle. A plunge from 3 metres into the icy water of a disused quarry. And when I say icy, I mean they had to literally break the ice earlier in the day.

After 7.5 miles of mud, climbing, clambering and despite the discomfort in my ankle I was feeling good. As soon as I jumped into that water no strength remained in me. I was a shivering wreck. As was everyone else. However it wasn't done. Still 1km left before you could get all the freezing damp clothes off. I don't honestly remember much about that kilometer. Other than it was hilly. I remember the last thing to do was a rope climb. Which was impossible in soaking gloves but it was equally impossible to get them off. Eventually though I managed it and the last 300m was a nice run in. Loads of support over the line.

I finished the race and I was happy. I didn't know how I placed and didn’t really care. Which surprised me considering that I am fairly competitive and expected myself to do well. I think I was just happy to finish a race I seriously thought about pulling out of. I felt proud of that, overcoming that self doubt and challenging myself to go out of my comfort zone more than I expected. Which as I said earlier is what I find to be what these sorts of races are all about.

Once I had heated up, which took forever, and come home I discovered I had actually finished 18th overall and 9th in my age category. Enough to go to the European obstacle course championships. If I can get the time off. Which I am thrilled about. So much so that I have entered into MacTuff 2019 and will encourage anyone else to do who is seeking a challenge, and something to keep the Christmas fat at bay.

February Frenzy 2018 - Update

posted 15 Jan 2018, 13:31 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 7 Feb 2018, 05:06 ]

******Update to Feb Frenzy below.  New starting point is Corrylach car park (not the Boat House), which is the starting point for the old 5K races.  this is approx 1 mile further on from the boat house.***********************

The 2018 February Frenzy handicap race will start 10am on Saturday 10th February at Lussa Loch for senior members.  
Feel free to bring home baking for post race treats...the best part of the event!

Slog in the Sand 2017

posted 26 Dec 2017, 12:09 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub

Well done to all who took part today!  The sun was shining down on Westport beach for CRC's annual Slog in the Sand 10k and the sand was reasonably firm underfoot making it possibly the best conditions runners have had in this event so far despite a bitter headwind after the turning point.  Congratulations to winners and hardy participants as well as all the cheering spectators and photographers on the beach.  Thank you to Rab, Suzy, Val, Catherine and all the timekeepers and helpers for the event especially a big thank you to the Coastguard (Malcolm and Jamie G!) for volunteering to come out to support our event, ensuring no-one gets swept away!  We hope you all had fun this Boxing Day, rewarded yourself with some of the cake on offer and enjoy the rest of the festivities.

Click here for full race results and timings.  Check out CRC's facebook page for some of the photos.

West Dirstict XC 2017 - Race Report

posted 21 Dec 2017, 05:46 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 21 Dec 2017, 14:30 ]

By Stuart McGeachy

It's the cross country season again and the first race attended this winter was the West District 10k at Irvine Moor Race Course on Saturday 9th December. It's fair to say the conditions leading up the race were a tad hairy, with heavy snow and freezing temperatures hitting Scotland.  Thankfully the weather improved on race day to permit 'semi-decent' driving conditions for the journey up.  Temperatures were still close to 0 degrees, however the sun was oot and underfoot was perfect for good times on the grass.

I managed to convince three other hardy b******* to join me and make the journey over to Irvine for the event.  Ewan Smith and Alisdair 'Elgy' O' May (aka Erchie Cook) were making their first outing for XC for CRC whilst Iain McKinnon is a regular for XC events. 

The Erchie Cook reference is related to a cast offjecket from Erchie's previous work, which Elgy inherited...somehow!  Quality jacket and nothing wrong with that you say, but what a state!  All other clubs are looking like pro’s in matching track suits and jackets…then there was the Campbeltown boys!  I mean ffs…. it went doon tae his ankles, with Erchies name fastooned on the chist, parading aboot the field like a young boy wearing his faither’s jecket!!  King! 

Anyway….. as I mentioned we were joined by fellow CRC member Iain McKinnon, who is based in Newcastle but shows his allegiance to the toon as he has family from the area..... and it's also cheaper than joining any other clubs down south 😊.  Really nice guy and in most excellent company with myself, a dooker and an Erchie Cook wannabe!  It was good to get a catch up with the guys prior to the race and managed a quick warmup before the mens event starting at 2pm.  There were 218 runners competing in the senior mens event, with a lot of familiar faces from central belt clubs suggesting it would be a tough race. 

As per usual the XC races starts off like a 100m sprint, jostling for position before the course narrows out.  It was a 3 loop route around the race course with a few tough hills (reasonably flat compared to other courses) and some awkward footing around some of the route.  It was good to see the guys at certain stages in the race to cheer each other on as the route overlapped at certain turns.

It’s fair to say I went off a bit too hard on the first 3 miles, settled in mile 4, and regained it from mile 5 onwards to breath oot my erse at the finish!  I think if you asked most runners out there they did the exact same thing, but I doubt I’d have improved my time going for negative splits as I hung on to a group of runners who I think pulled me along.

As XC races go, it wasn’t that muddy.  The frosty conditions meant the underfoot was quite hard so nowhere near as bad as my experience of West Districts two years ago at Bellahouston….which was just a mud bath!  As a result, times were quite fast was and really happy to finish in 37th place in 35:33.  Ewan Smith was next CRC member in with a brilliant time of 41:05 (125th), and if you look at the runners finishing behind Ewan you get an idea of how good a run that was.  Iain McKinnon wasn’t far behind in 45:55 (185th), which was another great time, especially considering recent injury issues he’s only overcome.  Elgy finished in 48:08 (200th), which is a decent time however isn’t really a true reflection of what he can do.  Elgy has been injured and in self-imposed hibernation from running recently, so just coming back into it and saw this as a good training run.  Fair play to him as it could have been easy just to blank it when not 100%.

Elgy, Ewan and Iain qualified as a master team as three members and finished 17th out of 19 teams.  Considering the quality out there, and the fact not everyone up to full fitness, I think we should be happy with that.  A couple of mins improvement would have seen them taking a good few positions, so something to aim for February.

Appreciate the guys making the effort up to Irvine, especially at this time of the year.  Hopefully we can bring a bigger group up for the Nationals in February.

Tweed Valley Ultra - Race Report

posted 11 Dec 2017, 05:35 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub

By Sarah McFadzean

Tweed Valley Ultra, 19th November

The race started in minus three frosty darkness and the chill in the air 
never really went away - I was thankful I had my hand warmers inside my
gloves!  I had not planned to wear the hat which was on the mandatory list however ended up not taking it off! The plus side of such cold
weather was a beautiful frosty view as the dawn broke.  The sun shone all day and the weather really was perfect.  Had it not been so cold the
trails would have been a mud bath and underfoot would have been much less enjoyable.  As it was everything was frozen and feet remained dry

I had never really let myself contemplate the full 41 miles in training and on the day I followed a similar strategy dividing the route in to
sections, for example the check points were at 10K, 11 miles, 21miles and 31 miles....... my Garmin went flat at 35.5 miles so I never saw the
numbers go up ward from there although I did get Strava going on the phone at that point and got the final section recorded, I never did get
to see the evidence of 41 miles on my watch.  But hey that doesn't mean it didn't happen!!

I had guestimated I'd take around 8 hours and the official time recorded is 8hours 40mins, which taking in to account I had a cup of tea at a
check point and faffed about topping up water bottles and taking photo's, used the loo twice (and went alfresco once!)  I think that time
is justifiable.  I took a little walk on a cycle path around 35 miles as the switch from trail to tarmac caused my left knee joint some issues
but after a brisk walk it sorted itself out and I was able to run round the final trails no problem.

I'v not had much chance to properly think about the distance until I measured it out on a drive home from work this week.....that 41mile
drive seemed to take forever! Three weeks on and I've been having an easy return to running, ten days off was followed by a few four mile
runs to test the knees out and a 10K this week to get some mileage back in. Loking forward to training up again for 2018's challenges and
scheduling a 50 miler in 2019 (injuries permitting!).

SKSC 2017 Race Series Results

posted 18 Nov 2017, 05:22 by Enquiries campbeltownrunningclub   [ updated 18 Nov 2017, 05:22 ]

As we mentioned at last weeks prize giving, the SKSC 2017 Race Series complete results and table can be found in the 'SKSC Race Series' page under the 'Events' Section.  Scroll down to the bottom of the page to view this years, and if your're bored previous years as well!

Alternatively you can can click here :-) 

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