Gala Harriers open their season

THE first of Gala Harriers’ cross country races was followed by the annual presentation night.

A beautiful late autumn day on Saturday greeted the 42 runners in the Hollybush race, a seven-mile route over the hills and along the river and back to Boleside.

Kelso’s Dean Whiteford, a regular guest runner led them homes in 39 minutes and three seconds, taking almost three minutes off last year’s time. He was followed by Mark Bryson, the first club member home, in 39.17, then the eventual winner of the sealed handicap Neil Potts trophy, Graham Manczak in 39.50.

An amazing 40.25 by junior Broc Dury brought him in third position for the club, while Gavin Bryson came 6th overall in 41.39.

First home for the ladies was in-form Fiona Dalgleish in 44.21, more than a minute ahead of junior Louise Mercer (45.36) who took the scalp off the ladies’ captain, Rachel Fagan who finished 3rd in 46.32.

The full results can be seen on the Gala Harriers’ website.

A good turn out of Harriers attended the club’s presentation night at the Gala Young Men’s Club. All those winning top places in the five club races throughout the past year received vouchers, medals and the club trophies from the ladies’ and men’s captains, Rachel Fagan and Derrick Brydon.

Martin Clarke won the Endeavour Cup for his loyalty to the club through both athletic performance and his work as club treasurer. The most improved junior was Katie Brown, with Margot Crosbie the most improved senior. Awards were also presented in for running at district and national level and club coaches were presented with wine as a mark of appreciation for their service.