Oldie grabs goldie as veterans show the way

OXTON GAMES Hill Race – now in its second year – enjoyed sunshine and blue skies, but with a strong northerly wind.

This kept it cool for the 30-strong field, but made things very interesting for the brave souls in the registration tent.

In almost a clean sweep for the veterans, Darin Dougal (Leithenburn) established an early lead and went on to take first place in 18.20, with Martin Dean of Forth Valley Orienteerers and Moorfoot’s Mike McGovern running a closely-fought race for second (19.08) and third (19.13) places respectively.

Ronnie Gallagher (Lauderdale, 19.15) was first “vet-who-hadn’t-already-won-a-prize”, and Sarah O’Neill (HBT) first lady in 21.12.

In the junior race, a small field of five runners tackled the short but challenging course, braving thistles, tree roots, a bog, three river crossings and overhanging trees.

Thomas Ottan of Gala Harriers very nearly missed the start, but was rewarded for his lightning-quick change with first place in 7.48, ahead of Jason McIntosh (8.17) and Joe Agnew (Lauderdale, 8.18).

Thanks go to Lauderdale Limpers for help with the organisation, to all those who assisted with registration, timekeeping, marshalling and sweeping, to the Red Cross who again provided safety cover, and to all the farmers and landowners along the course for access and support.