Forres Gumps

We ran & we ran & we ran – pretty fast!

Great team turnout at the Masters Cross Country all the way up North in grey & murky Forres today, with plenty of cameraderie & fun along the way. This was the last opportunity for those of us still in the V35  category to go & have a play at the Masters Championships before they put the age up to 40 at the beginning of April, so I for one was keen to exploit the chance.

The Forres course is very different to the type of terrain that we’re used to in the central/eastern scotland area, as after a couple of short, grassy laps, both the races headed up into the woods for some fun trail running. Conditions were really good for cross country running – still, cool & firm underfoot after a crisp week, so very little mud in evidence either.

So… how did the defending women’s champion find the pressure? Well, the pressure was certainly there, but she rose to the challenge successfully, having thoroughly enjoyed the race & worked hard throughout, after shaking off the strong challenge from Melissa Whyte by the end of the short loops. And the women’s team had a great race overall, with a guest appearance from Jo Whitehead in her first race for around 3 years. With 60 finishers from 73 entered, it was a good field with both quality & depth and a great testement to the increasing strength of women’s cross country running in Scotland. The team contest was very tight, with only 29 points separating the first 3 teams, adding to the excitement.

And how did the men get on? We were a couple of our normal counters down, but everyone who made the long trip up ran really well to finish in a strong 4th team place. Top EAC performer was Martin Ferguson as gold medalist M45 (11th overall) Incredibly, Ron Hill Cambuslang had only 12 points from 4 counters to storm away with the team title.

Part of the attraction of the Masters scene is the social side & the presentations back in Forres Town Hall was a great example of this. There was tea, biscuits, award winning pies and the place was packed to the rafters to celebrate  the achievements of all the age groups from the V35 through to M75.

I will be sad to be too young to defend my Masters title next year, as the Championships are a great, very well organised & fun event.

Women’s Results

1 Jennifer MacLean

4 Sue Ridley (2nd F40)

21 Marietta Van der Linden

47 Jo Whitehead

Men’s Results

9 Graeme Beal (5th M40)

11 Martin Ferguson (1st M45)

23 Garry Robertson (5th M45)

40 Owen Flange (M35)

63 Kirk Ollason (M35)

73 Brian Howie (M55)

76 Alex McEwan (M55)

81 Eric Stevenson (M60)

85 Jonathan Whitehead (M50)

88 William Gallacher (M60)

98 Walter McCaskey (M75)

5 thoughts on ““Forres Gumps”

  • Jenny

    Mad welshman with running kit that looked older than he does. So, he didn’t get a lift home with you then Brian? He went awol somewhere between the course & the prizegiving!

    • brian howie

      it’s Flage. Yes I gave him a lift to Aviemore and he got the train back to Glasgow with 5 mins to spare. His journey up was a bit fraught. His orginal lift called off and the bus over to mine from Glasgow broke down.

  • alex macewen

    well done marieeta.. not just winning a team medal but getting a team up there.. jopo ran well for someone not trainin!

    my thanks to owen flage who travelled all the way from manchester suffering various delays.. and he made the counting four..

    good news from the blazers: vets/masters from april will be over 40 both male and female

    the prizeging was by the great don ritchie and Forres men won a team bronze..Let me end on thanking Forres for putting so mich into the event.. a realy nice town.

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