Some role reversal has seen popular Peebles Italian restaurant Franco’s renew its sponsorship of the Cademuir Rollercoaster hill races which are scheduled for the grassy slopes of Cademuir Hill on the south side of the town on Saturday 12 August.
Race organiser Gregor donned his chef’s outfit for a gnocchi making lesson from Franco’s co-proprietor Francesco de Martino in Franco’s kitchen, then put Francesco through his paces with a training session on Tweed Green.
“Regular patrons needn’t be alarmed”, he said. “None of my efforts were for public consumption and I will definitely not be a permanent feature in the kitchen.” And in a similar vein, Francesco added “I don’t think any of the runners will be worrying too much about having to race me”.
Franco’s sponsorship deal includes vouchers as prizes and the lucky male and female winners of the senior race will also receive a bottle of prosecco, courtesy of Franco’s partner Bacco Wines in Edinburgh, a step up from the usual bottled beer on offer at other hill races.
Gregor added, “Cademuir Hill provides excellent running terrain, much of it on the paths of The John Buchan Way, with some fantastic views of Peebles and the surrounding countryside. Like most hill races, you don’t have to be a super-fit club athlete to enter. Usually a third of the runners are non-club runners. There is a real community feel to this type of hill race whether you are racing near the front, trying to beat your own time from last year, running with friends, or just enjoying some healthy exercise in a beautiful environment, all for the princely sum of £2.”
Franco’s co-proprietor Marisa de Martino said “We are delighted to continue to sponsor this community race which we have done since it was first held in 2014. Good luck to all the local runners but especially those who enjoy Franco’s for their pre-race or post-race meal.”
In a slight change to previous years, there is a three course menu for this year’s Rollercoaster races – short (3.8km), medium (5.8km) and long (8km). Further information, including race times, course maps and age eligibility, can be found on the Moorfoot Runners website www.moorfootrunners.co.uk