Gala Harriers have been enjoying a busy summer in competition up and down the country across a variety of terrains and distances.
On the last weekend in August, there was action for junior athletes in the Trossachs at Aberfoyle with the selection trials for the Junior Home International Hill Running event later this month in Glendalough, County Wicklow.
Across steep challenging routes over forest roads and hill tracks, Jamie Logan (7th in 20 minutes 11 seconds) and Corri Campbell (9th in 20.52) ran very well in the Under 14 Boys’ 3.8k climb while in the longer Under 16 Boys’ race, Thomas Otton (23.27) and Gavin Bryson finished in a superb 1st and 2nd place respectively, with Jason McIntosh finishing well for 12th place in 27.49.
James Mercer put in a grand effort and was placed 6th in the Under 19 Boys’ 7k race in 30.04 while sister Louise, formerly of the Harriers but now with Edinburgh University, won the Under 19 Girls’ race.
As a result, Thomas, Gavin and Louise have been selected to run for Scotland on September 20. Thomas also shared first place in the Scottish Athletics junior hill running league 2014 in his age group.
Gala Harriers wish them all the very best as they pull on their international vests.
On the same day, Gala’s Dianne Lauder won the women’s Hawick 10k which was also the East District 10k championship.
It’s said that men and buses are hard to find then come along in pairs. Last weekend there were two very popular half marathons to choose from on consecutive days: The inaugural Scottish Half Marathon near Edinburgh and the Great North Run which saw its millionth runner come through the finish, some considerable time after winner Mo Farah, with eight Gala Harriers somewhere in between.
A good summer of training ensured some excellent personal bests in the heat of the Scottish Half for Nicola Porterfield (1.35.43) and Fiona Shepherd (1.37.09), with Gina Allen pleased with her race in 1.49.00.
The next day in a sun kissed 13.1 miles in Tyneside, the eight Harriers had mixed fortunes, with Wayne McIntosh leading the Gala challenge in an impressive 1 hour 20 minutes 2 seconds followed by another personal best by veteran Dave Nightingale in 1.26.30.
A good run by Colin Welsh (1.28.45) and Lee Myers (1.59.36) Jill Grainger (2.22.33) Elaine Johnston (2.23.29) Jamie Buchanan (2.43.58) and Anne Purves (2.47.57) completed the set.