The weekend of the 22nd saw the final two Harriers Races of 2019 – one serious, the other less so, writes Andrew McEwan.
The first competition was the Menzies, one of the more straightforward race routes in the calendar. Juniors race around the park, whereas the women and U15/U17 race takes in Wilton Lodge Park, then through Parkdaill, finishing at the High School. The men’s race is the same as the latter route, but with an extra leg added on before Martinshouse, taking runners through Branxholm Woodfoot and Branxholm Bridgend over a local feature known as the “Joogly Bridge”. Iona Jamieson and Irvine Welsh gained the W.G. Robertson trophy and the MGM trophy respectively for their fine finishes in the U11-U13 race. Fraser Clyne took the J.N. Hamilton trophy for being the first U15-U17 boy across the finish line, whilst Robbie Welsh took the Shiel Cup in the handicap. Lindsey Knox won the Ladies race in 24:37. Ryan Milligan took the Oliver Trophy as the first person across the finish line in the men’s race with a time of 24:46 and Chris Watson won the men’s handicap.
If you had been in Wilton Lodge Park the following day, you might have encountered a veritable river of runners in various states of fancy dress – masses of santas, speedy elves and the occasional onesie were all to be glimpsed legging it around the Park. This was the Harriers annual Christmas relays, where teams of runners race against each other for first place. The winning team of Freya Walker, Taylor Watson, Ava Hughes, Abbie McGaughey, Thomas MacAskill and Chris Watson came first in an excellent field.
Well done to all competitors in both races – everyone contributed to making it an excellent two days, and we are now looking forward to 2019 with great excitement.