16th June 2012
Durisdeer hill race
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The omens were not good as the Pentlands were covered in mist down to the road but fortunately at Durisdeer the tops were clear and the torrential rain held off until the race had finished. I soon gave up chasing JBF and concentrated on not plunging headlong into various ravines. The ascents are reasonable but the descents and some of the traverses are vertiginous on the course which covers some 9.39 miles and 3,600ft of ascent. As the race was a Carnethy and Scottish championship there was a large turnout (and not just of midges), sadly not including Andy Lennie who arrived 10mins after the start and settled for driving to all the road crossings and cheering us on. Still he was probably more fortunate than the 3 runners who headed off towards Selkirk at some point and were being retrieved by mountain rescue as we tucked into the feast of cake. Prasad Prasad was the overall winner; Stuart Whitlie won the M50 and for the ladies Jasmin was in 3rd place. The usual wonky photos here and results here
Organiser's report
18 hours of heavy rain preceding the race had made the steep descents and contouring a bit more tricky than normal but overall the underfoot conditions were pretty good. I was more concerned about the parking but once the stream that was the track had been driven up and the narrow gate negotiated parking was fine. The rain eased slightly for the race and visibility was good.
Prasad Prasad won the men’s race by a few seconds with Catriona Buchanan taking the women’s title by a more comfortable margin.
153 started the race, 3 decided they had had enough by checkpoint 4 and accepted a lift back and 3 decided to do a completely different race and were later picked up halfway to Kilmarnock.  153 reconvened upstairs in the Church to swap stories over lashings of tea and home baking.
Special thanks to our band of volunteers that make the event flow and easy to organise. Especially Moffat Mountain Rescue Team who always attend and were especially appreciated this year due to weather conditions and AWOL runners. Loudest applause of the day went to the ladies who keep the never ending supply of tea and cakes coming.
Adam Anderson
Scottish Champions at Durisdeer
After a hard fought race in wet and windy conditions at Durisdeer near Thornhill on Saturday 16 June, Murray Strain (HBT) and Catriona Buchanan (Ochils) are the Senior Scottish Athletics Hill Running Champions for 2012.
The Durisdeer course is recorded as 16km with 1150m of climb, although competitors with GPS report that it measures slightly shorter.  There are 3 main phases of the course: the first 2km sees a rapid 350m ascent of Black Hill, with the course then dropping steeply down to a road and river crossing at about the starting level.  The next 5km loops round the back of Steygail, with 2 ascents of 120m and 230m over passes along the way.  The final 6km starts with a 370m climb to Well Hill, followed by an undulating ridge run to Black Hill before descending to the finish along the route of the initial climb.
The front of the men's race was closely contested. First across the line was Prasad Prasad (Squadra Porcini), but since he has allowed his Scottish Athletics membership to lapse, he had to satisfy himself with the organiser's prize of cheese and oatcakes, and allow the winner's medal to go to  Murray Strain (HBT) who had finished just a few seconds behind him. Tom Owens (Shettleston) was the next across the line, and the bronze medal went to Matt Sullivan (Shettleston).
In the women's race, Catriona Buchanan (Ochils) led the field home with a comfortable margin over Sarah O'Neill (HBT) and Jasmin Paris (Carnethy) who had a close tussle before O'Neill secured the silver medal. Early in the race, O'Neill had set the pace but she may still have felt the effects of doing a 2 day mountain marathon the previous weekend.
The veterans classes race over the same course: Kenny Richmond (Shettleston) led the Masters (V40) class home for the men, with Shona Robertson (Shettleston) taking the honours among the women.  In the V50 class, Stewart Whitlie (Carnethy) and Beryl Junnier (Ochils) triumphed, and among the V60s, Euan Patterson (Moray Roadrunners) and Ros Evans (Westerlands) were the champions.

Hugh Buchanan

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