Harriers’ race day is runaway success for all

Runners in action at Harriers' fantastic race day
Runners in action at Harriers' fantastic race day

Following months of planning, Teviotdale Harriers staged their 10k, Jog Scotland 5k Challenge and two-mile Fun Run – with great success.

More than 200 runners from far and wide recently made their way around the scenic courses, cheered on by hundreds more.

Pre-race entries had hinted at a really good turnout and with on the day registration available, many more arrived to swell the numbers.

With the weather ideal for distance running, from start to finish, in terms of the event and the runs, things couldn’t have gone better.

Following registration at the Cricket Club, the hordes of runners made their way, with a mixture of nervous excitement and some trepidation to the start of their chosen challenge.

All three races began on Victoria Road and led runners through the Park Gates and into the ‘Jewel in Hawick’s Crown,’ Wilton Lodge Park.

First event under way was the suitable for everyone, two-mile Fun Run. There were 78 runners of differing abilities all striving for the same goal, who happily made their way along what must surely be one of the most picturesque running routes you could find.

With the beautiful Fun Run route leading past the museum around the park and back down the riverside, runners could easily forget the effort they were exerting and be captivated by the allure and charm of our perfect park.

There was for some, however, a race to be won and the two-mile Fun Run title was duly claimed by Gregor Collins (13:02) of Gala Harriers.

Not far behind, two of Teviotdales top prospects, Conan Harper (13:43, 2nd) and Irvine Welsh (14:30, 3rd) completed the top three. Fourth overall, Iona Jamieson (14:41) ran superbly and placed first for the girls. Second was Nadine Elder (15:57) with Maisie Ballantyne (16:23) completing a 1-2-3 for the Harriers.

Once the fun runners had completed their course it was then the turn of the 10k and 5k runners to sample the sights of what Hawick had to offer.

Again heading up through the Park Gates and past the eye-catching museum, the longer events turned up what the Harriers have dubbed ‘The 10k Hill,’ which leads on to Wilton Park Road.

The route passes the Walled Gardens and follows the road out towards Martin’s Bridge. Heading left over the bridge and then following the path around Parkdaill, all the way back into Hawick past the High School, turning left into St Georges Lane and over the bridge.

For the 5k participants, your race was run but for the 10k competitors a second lap was required.

The 60 Jog Scotland 5k entrants were also led home by a Gala Harrier. Marcus D’Agrosa claimed victory in a time of 17:01. Callum Tharme (17:30) also Gala, secured second with Teviotdales Fraser Clyne (18:14) although finishing fourth, securing third place. The third pace runner Ethan Elder, Moorfoot Runners (18:00) scooped first in the Boys under-16 category.

The ladies 5k title went to Lisa MacDonald (19:48) of North Middleton. Gillian Duncan (21:16) Gala Harriers finished second and local Hawick runner Rachel Harris (21:27) ran well to finish third. The Girls under-16 winner was Sarah Davenport of Tweed Leader Jed Track in 22:44.

Then 65 competitors set off on the fast flat two-lap 10k course. The impressive winner, for the second year in a row, was Edinburgh AC athlete Callum Reid. Callum retained his title and bested his previous time to take the title in 34:03. Teviotdale’s very own ever-improving Greg Walker (35:27) ran a PB to finish second. Richard Meade (36:07) also Edinburgh AC completed the podium.

With multiple Hawick 10k victories under her belt already, Dianne Lauder led the way once more to secure the female title. Finishing fourth overall, Gala Harriers Dianne raced round in 36:15. Hawick’s Anna Galbraith (37:13) finished second and Lauren Wilson (38:09) Edinburgh AC came home third.

Darin Dougal, of Moorfoot Runners, claimed the over 40’s men title. Finishing 9th overall, Darin posted a 10k time of 37:28.

The ladies vet’s victory went to Eileen Maxwell, ensuring the fourth top spot claimed by a Gala Harrier on the day.

The days team prize unsurprisingly went north to Edinburgh AC with four runners in the top five men’s positions (Callum Reid, Richard Meade, Keith Dunlop and Nairn McWilliams).

Runners, fatigued but ultimately fulfilled, headed back to the Cricket Club for tasty tray bakes and refreshments, followed by the prize giving and awarding of numerous spot prizes.

The successful event drew to a close, the hard work of the previous weeks and months had culminated in a day that surely satisfied all that came along.

Many thanks to Bruce Hughes for report.