The last two Saturdays I’ve headed off to run a couple of Hill Races at local shows which were new to myself and the other Harriers present. First up was the Yetholm Border Shepherds Show where also running for Teviotdale were Andy Goodair and Paul Lockie. This could possibly be the most spectator friendly race around with most of the 4 mile route visible from the showfield. The route takes in two hills returning to the start after the first smaller hill at which point the Junior Race finished while the Seniors carried on to the steeper climb of Staerough splashing through the river on the way there and back. Organised by Les Turnbull and Norham Running Club the race is only in the second year in this format and only attracted a small field but was very enjoyable and deserves to attract more runners in the future. The upside of the small field was that everybody got a prize and all three Harriers managed a top ten finish with myself 4th, Andy 5th and Paul in 10th.
Last Saturday it was a trip across the border with Rory Anderson for Alwinton Show, where prize money down to 10th place for all the races attracted much bigger fields than at Yetholm. Another good race for spectators this was a short sharp blast coming in at only 2.5 miles with the juniors going off earlier running the same course as the seniors, so a tough one for the kids. We had been pre-warned that it would be near impossible to get past anybody on the climb so had a fast first mile alongside the River Coquet before the short but steep climb up a narrow path through the bracken, a run along the top of the hill was followed by a dash back down through the bracken to the finish. Rory had a great run to finish 2nd while I managed to get in the money as well in 8th place. Two good races and with plenty going on at both shows I can definitely recommend them for an enjoyable day out in the future.