Monday 30 May 2016

Edinburgh Marathon Festival

The Edinburgh Marathon Festival was on this weekend, and a few Moorfoot runners took part in the marathon and the half marathon on Sunday, 29th May. Conditions were ideal with no wind and pleasant temperatures in the morning, warming up towards lunchtime. Starting in the centre of Edinburgh and finishing in Musselburgh, the route set off with a steady downhill for 5k, then it was flat along the Portobello beach front, and undulating during the last 6k of the half marathon. There was great support all along the route, cheering the runners on. Magnus Skea ran the marathon in 3:14:49, which is a fantastic PB for him. Scott McDonald did the half marathon in 1:21:01, his best half marathon time in the last ten years, and finished in 55th position overall and in 4th in his age group. Paul Nichol finished the half marathon in 1:37:39.

Saturday 28 May 2016

Scout 6th at GB Euro Trials

Women's Trial top finishers
Scout Adkin was an excellent 6th today at Whinlatter Forest, near Keswick in the GB senior trial race for the European Mountain Running Champs. The two-lap race over 8.2km/450m was won by Norwegian based Brit Rebecca Hilland (No.58) in 37.00 with the Inter-Counties champ Heidi Dent (54) 2nd in 37.57 and GB regular Sarah Tunstall (59) 3rd. Scout managed to get the better of one of the English runners Lou Roberts (62) who had finished ahead of her in the Inter-Counties, even managing to overtake her on the final descent to come home in 39.46 less than a minute behind GB internationalist Annie Conway (50) who was 4th. Good going given Scout's preference for uphill only courses which she will get to enjoy (?) in the Worlds trial race at the end of July.
Recent Gypsy Glen runner-up Gav Bryson and Rollercoaster regular Laura Stark each won their U20 Trials to gain automatic GB selection for the Euros.

Jedburgh Three Peaks ultramarathon entries open on Sunday night 8pm and will sell out quickly

In case anyone would like to do the Jedburgh Three Peaks ultramarathon or be in a four person relay team
Distance: 38 miles
Race date and time: Saturday 29th October, 8:00am
Location: Jedburgh, TD8 6JQ
Entry fee: £35 (£33 for members of Scottish Athletics)
Entry limit: 300 (no waiting list)

this is what they posted on Facebook this week. Apparently it will sell out in seconds on Sunday night at 8pm

Some news for all of our prospective runners, before we open for entry:
We're not quite sure what to expect on Sunday evening, but we realise that both races are likely to be a little bit more popular than last year, thanks to the lovely TV coverage we got on the Adventure Show. So...
For the ultra, we have increased the number of places to 300. These will be allocated on a first come first served basis, and there won't be a waiting list. And we won't be answering begging ema...ils from folk who missed out, so if you think there's any chance at all that the race might fill up immediately, and that you won't be able to access EntryCentral next Sunday at 8:00pm, go speak nicely RIGHT NOW to your friend, sibling, husband, girlfriend, son, mother, auntie, grandpa, neighbour, work colleague, priest or imam, and ask them to do it for you.
For the relay race, we have increased the number of team places to 25. And if required, we will do a ballot to allocate these places. If the relay fills up in the first ten minutes and is massively oversubscribed, we will close entries at midnight then pull names out of a hat. Angela has loads of different hats to choose from since she shaved her head...
Entry for the ultra will be £35/£33. We are putting the entry fee up for the first time ever since the race started in 2012, and this is to cover the cost of chip timing, which we have decided is necessary this year on the grounds of runner safety - basically to double-check that everyone is accounted for at the end of the day.
Entry for the relay will be £68 per team, with a £2 refund at race registration for team members who produce evidence of ScottishAthletics membership. The relay race will also be chip timed.
As part of our entry 'fee' this year, we will be asking each runner to provide two items of canned or packaged food. These will be collected at race registration and donated to a foodbank of our choice. More information about this soon...
Our chosen national charity for 2016 is the Scottish Transgender Alliance. When registering and paying via EntryCentral, all runners will have the opportunity to make a donation. The STGA work to promote transgender inclusion, equality and rights across Scotland, and they are delighted to have been chosen by us. We think it's a very worthwhile charity to support, and we really hope our runners do too. So when you're typing away madly on EntryCentral next Sunday, please consider ticking the box and making a donation.
As ever, come November, event profits will be distributed to various charities and local groups of our choosing. We have a number of lovely ones in mind and we'll let you know all about them in due course.
There will be more news and information being added to our website this week, so do pop over and have a look:

Wednesday 25 May 2016

401 Marathon Challenge+

A marathon with a difference last Sunday as Ben Smith came to town to run marathon #265 out of 401 consecutive. Around 70 folk joined in - some for a mile or so, some for the full distance and many in between too.  A great atmosphere and thanks to all who joined in.  Ben's daily calorie intake is over 6,000 (!) so I can safely say this was the first time I have ever stopped for lunch at Wetherspoons on the way round a marathon - and probably the last too!

Saturday 21 May 2016

Gypsy Glen Hill Race Report, Peebles Weds 18 May

The 2016 edition of the Gypsy Glen Hill Race had a record turn out with 88 taking part on Wednesday evening in rather damp and overcast conditions. I would like to think that the increase in numbers had something to do with the race being in the Scottish Borders Hill Race Series but it probably was more to do with there being no clashes with other races in the calendar as there had been in previous years.
The calibre of the field attracted was certainly the best yet with the race being run by Scottish international hill runner James Waldie of the Carnethy club beating Gavin Bryson from Lauder (Edinburgh AC) who recently won the Scottish U20 10,000m track title into 2nd place. The winning time of 31:04 was a course record over a minute. In fact the first 4 finishers would have broken the old course record of 32:21, and the wet and slippery conditions would have slowed runners a bit!

Lucas at the Top

Andy leading Lucas on the climb
The race was well attended by Moorfoots and other local runners, with big contingents from Penicuik Harriers and Carnethy. First Moorfoot home was Lucas Cheskin (7th - 34:28) who pipped Andy Cox by two seconds (8th – 34:30) who was leading the pair at the summit. Just behind them was Benjamin Hindley from Innerleithen, now an ex-Moorfoot and running for Strathclyde Uni, (9th – 34:39). Craig Mattocks was the next local home who runs for Carnethy and has recently moved to Peebles with his wife Kate Jenkins. Craig also was the fastest Veteran finishing 12th in 34:53. Mike McGovern was third vet (19th - 37:06).

Jill Stephen of HBT was first woman (27th 38:02). Carol Moss made a welcome return to racing and Susan Ridley and Kate Jenkins both of Peebles had good showing in 44th and 45th places.
The Moorfoot results were:

Lucas Cheskin
Moorfoot Runners
Andrew Cox
Moorfoot Runners
Michael McGovern
Moorfoot Runners
Magnus Skea
Moorfoot Runners
Kenneth Davidson
Moorfoot Runners
David Cheskin
Moorfoot Runners
Ian Munro
Moorfoot Runners
Alan Elder
Moorfoot Runners
Carol Moss
Moorfoot Runners

 Full results herePhotos here

Sunday 15 May 2016

Hi Ho Silver x4 at East Champs

U15 800m medallists Michael and Charlotte (R) with Lasswade's Hannah Little (L) from Peebles (bronze)

Moorfoot Runners had a healthy share of middle distance medals at the East of Scotland Champs at Grangemouth on Friday and Saturday.

It was gone 9pm on a chilly Friday evening when, despite having had to run a heat three hours earlier, Ethan Elder cut 4 seconds off his PB in taking the silver medal in the U15 boys' 1500m in 4.31.76. Running smartly, Ethan moved into third at the bell, leading the pack in chasing down the front two. Having stretched and broken up the pack down the back straight, and looking safely in the bronze medal position off the bend, Ethan made a strong late charge and flashed across the line in a challenge for the silver, getting the verdict in a photo-finish by three hundredths of a second. 

11th in that final was Craig Angus who ran a massive PB of 4.55.76.

Also in the Moorfoot colours on the Friday evening were Esme Minto who ran a three second PB when 7th in the U13 girls' 1500m, and in the U15 girls equivalent Charlotte Morrison took two seconds off her best for 13th in 5.31.97 with Eilidh Mooney just behind in 16th in 5.35.50. Mairi Wallace was 8th in the U17 women's 1500m in 5.15.47. All four of these girls have another year in that age-group as does young David Cathcart who ran in the U13 boys' 200m coming 5th in his heat and just missing qualification for the final.

On the Saturday Kobe Stevens came very close to his first District championship title, just missing out in the U20 men’s 800m and taking silver with a new PB of 1.59.11. And it was double silver in the U15 800m. Charlotte Clare slashed four seconds off her personal best with a really strong run in the girls race, finishing in 2.22.05 and Michael Girdler, who is still only 12 years old, got down to 2.06.76 in the boys equivalent, a three second improvement on his PB.

Kobe - so close!
Patrick Cannon was one place off the medals in finishing 4th in the U13 boys' 800m with a big PB of 2.36.36 and David Cathcart was in action again taking 4th in the javelin under Dad Dan's tutelage with 16.25m and coming 4th in his 100m heat in 14.76s, just one place off qualifying for the final.
Ethan with his silver medal

Great Comeback by Scout at Inter-Counties

Scout Adkin, now based in York, had shown her well-being in recent weeks with a couple of course records in low-key hill races in Yorkshire and a Parkrun PB, but the Inter-Counties Championship (see post below) on Saturday was her first real hill test having missed the summer 2015 season with injury and illness. And boy did she bounce back well. She said she surprised herself, as well as probably the rest of the good quality field, by being first woman at the top of the first climb ahead of the likes of GB Internationalists Heidi Dent, Annie Conway and Katie Walshaw and ex-Moorfoot and training partner Sarah MacCormack, now racing for Ambleside.

As usual she lost some ground on the rough, steep descents, some of which involved some off-path route choice, and she finished 4th in the end in 72.45 for the 12.8k/915m course. Dent ran out a clear winner in 68.42 but Scout was within 30 seconds of 2nd and 3rd, and was over two minutes ahead of Sarah who was 6th in 74.58 with Walshaw 7th in 75.17.

Lucas Cheskin has been struggling with a double-dose cold since April so maybe wasn't on top form in finishing 68th (13th U23) in 76.18 but said he thoroughly enjoyed it even though he didn't realise quite how far it was when he agreed to do it!

Saturday 14 May 2016

Moorfoot Runners at the 33rd Penicuik 10k Road Race

The 33rd Penicuik 10k race - incorporating the East District 10k Road Championship - attracted 256 runners today, amongst them our Moorfoot runners Scott McDonald, Darin Dougal, Alan Elder and Robert Wilson. Scott was first Moorfoot Runner home in a time of 38:05, coming 27th place (7th M40). Darin was the 31st runner (8th M40) to cross the finish line with a time of 38:23. Alan came 92nd (8th M50) in 45:23 with Robert breaking the 50 minute barrier in 49:14 in 135th. Brian Hood, running for Lasswade was a bit ahead of Robert in 126th and 48:09. As the district champs it attracted a very high quality field with the winning time was 32:25 (Jamie Crowe, Central AC), first woman was Jennifer Wetton (Central AC) in 36:30, both very quick times on the tough course. The circular route, starting and ending at the Penicuik Sports Fields, included a ~3k climb out of Penicuik towards the Howgate, coming back on Peebles Road. Conditions were good with temperatures around 14 degrees Celsius. The beautiful sunshine made athletes linger, chat, and cheer on fellow runners at the finishing area. Post-race refreshments and home baking awaited the athletes at the Penicuik High School after the race. Link to results: 

Thursday 12 May 2016

Dumyat Hill Race

The annual Dumyat Hill (1,373ft) Race kicked off on a pleasant evening in the grounds of Stirling Uni.

346 entrants  buzzed around the narrow starting pen for this year's out and back thrash up Dumyat. (somewhere amongst the bevested throng were Alan E, Mike M and Andy C) After some incomprehensible, important instructions, muffled through a microphone, were given, the horde was off.

courtesy of Stirling Uni website

It's a galloping pace up the road to the first hole in the boundary wall. Some good flat compacted track before hitting the first steep section through the woods. Up and over some steep trails, the path opens on to the hillside. My calves have imploded by now and I adopt a walk-run-grunt-walk-run-grunt format. Somewhere ahead are Mike and Andy. There is a good runnable (with proper lower-leg function) sequence of paths that lead to the giant fire basket at the top of the cairn. Andy comes down this section first and then I spot Mike.I reach the top and touch the basket and then start the frantic charge back down. I pass a good 30 or so runners on the way down - however, 60 passed me on the way up!

Courtesy website

Once off the main hill, there is a flat section that returns along the boundary wall and on to the last short downhill section. A mad dash for the finish, almost wiping out another runner, and the run is over.

Post race, we headed into Bridge of Allan for a fish supper - Well Mike and I had a normal fish supper - Andy had a Moby Dick supper!

Chip shop guy handing Andy his post race scoff

Andy was a very respectable 20th (39.14) - large field of very high quality runners.

Mike went there and back in 43.16 and Alan in 52.49

Full results here

Lucas Cheskin and Scout Adkin selected to represent East Scotland Team in British Hill Running Inter-Counties

This weekend sees Lucas and Scout head south to the for the British Inter-Counties event, being staged over the classic Moel Eilio race in North Wales on Saturday 14 May. Good Luck!!
moel-eilio-header border.jpg

Jacob Adkin selected for Salamon Running Academy 2016, Alpine training camp

Jacob has announced that he has been selected for Salamon Running Academy 2016, a week long training camp in the German Alps at the end of May for elite mountain runners aged 16-20:
Well done Jacob!

Jacob tweeted:
Super excited to be a part of the

Wednesday 11 May 2016

Congratulations Madeline, Beltane Queen

Despite the fact that she will now be unavailable (we presume!) for the Forth Valley League on Beltane Saturday, many congratulations to Moorfoot Madeline Collins who was announced today as the Beltane Queen for 2016.

Gonna be a Mad Mads Beltane!

As some of you may know on Sunday 22nd May Ben Smith is coming to Peebles - he is currently in the middle of his challenge of running 401 marathons in 401 days around the UK (see  He will be running a 26.2 mile route starting and ending on Tweed Green and we would love some Moorfoots to join us!  Attached is the route and estimated timings (he anticipates running an 11-minute mile pace).  If anyone is planning to join in please let me know - my email address is  Thanks!

Expected Time
Tweed Green Wishing Well (start)
Entrance to Kittlegairy
Kingsmeadows Road
Bonnington Road
Road round Cademuir
Road round Cademuir
Road round Cademuir
Kirkton Manor Picnic Site (next to cattle grid)
Entrance to Glentirnie House, Manor Valley Road
Kirkton Manor Picnic Site (next to cattle grid)
Road round Cademuir
Road round Cademuir
Road round Cademuir
Bonnington Road
Kingsmeadows Road
Exit from Whitehaugh Park

Cardrona Village Green
Cardrona Village Green (end of lap 1)
Cardrona Village Green (end of lap 2)
Cardrona Village Green (end of lap 3)

Hydro Entrance, Innerleithen Road
Tweed Green Tweedlove Arena (finish)