WHILE the hardy local hill runners were lining up in Victoria Park, at the St Ronan’s Games, ready to endure the rigours of Lee Pen, Moorfoot’s Scout Adkin was toeing the line in Llanberis.
The Peebles athlete joined around 600 others on what was her toughest challenge yet, the Snowdon International race over 16.1km with a climb of 1006m.
Although still very warm, Scout reported it to be not quite as hot as the previous day’s 30C. Undeterred by what lay ahead, the physiotherapy student headed her Scottish team-mates for most of the way up, only being overtaken by Jill Mykura as they approached the summit cairn where she turned fourth woman in 57.03.
Coach Gregor Nicholson said: “Scout’s descending has been improving in recent races but she knew this one was going to be brutal - over 8km of continuous fast descending on the stony tourist path, side-stepping the masses of slower runners still going up, then a very steep road section leading back into the town.”
One place lost, to the fast finishing Jackie Lee of Wales, but also one place gained by overtaking none other than experienced England and GB internationalist Pippa Maddams, saw Scout come down off the mountain in a faster section time than the Irish winner Sarah Mulligan for a fantastic fourth place finish in 1.28.33. With Mykura picking up a place on the descent for second, and Charlotte Morgan home in sixth, it was team gold for Scotland ahead of Ireland and the other home countries.
Nicholson added, “When Scout and I sat down to plan her 12-13 season back in September 2012, Snowdon was on the race list as a target just for participation and experience as she tackled her first full season out of the junior ranks.
“To then make the Scotland team for the race was a boost but to go on to finish fourth and be a crucial counting member of the winning Scotland team when she is still shy of her 20th birthday is way beyond what we could have hoped for.
“It’s testament to all the hard work and dedication which Scout has put in over the last year in making a hugely successful transition to the senior ranks.”