Seven Hills of Edinburgh Race

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Running through the gate at Edinburgh Castle Esplanade

(This imaginative, unusual and challenging race, which takes place every June, has a long and interesting history – and a really excellent website, from which much of this information is ‘borrowed’. Do look up the full site! Then consider entering very early next year, since the 2016 race is full up already!)

The Concept: Back in the 1970s, there were two fit young guys who went running together in Edinburgh, David Salmond and Alan Lawson. One day DS came across a guide-book to Edinburgh which used the phrase ‘seven hills’, so they investigated the possibility of creating a route which included them all. After some adjustments, the current route was fixed upon.

The Beginning: The event was first staged in 1980, as part of a political/cultural festival on Calton Hill, in support of the Scottish self-government movement; the Seven Hills race was included as a sporting adjunct to the other activities. About 75 people took part in that first year.

Cert7Hills80

       Colin was second to Sandy Keith in the first race

Expanding: It was soon recognised that the route was something a bit special compared to other athletic events, as well as being a considerable challenge to complete for anyone who was not a regular runner. So, as the great 1980s upsurge of distance running got under way, The Seven Hills became an annual (stand-alone) event, with an increasing number of participants each year.

The Challenge: Although the leading runners always took the race seriously and ran to win, the ethos of the event included a challenge to more modest performers to just get round the course (and tell the story for the next ten years!). Understanding the wide ability-range of the various entrants, the organisers soon divided the event into two — The Race (for the serious runners), and The Challenge (for those of more limited ambitions)… the Challenge event starting half-an-hour before The Race, ensuring that the ‘challengers’ didn’t get tailed off. This formula seemed to work pretty well, and has been retained ever since. (One of its benefits is that ageing runners can ‘drop down’ from the Race to the Challenge in their later years.)

Website Sponsorship: We are grateful to Learntech, a Scottish e-commerce and e-learning specialist company, who created the basics of this website in 2003.

 Regulars: Quite a number of runners have participated on many occasions; a handful have an almost complete record.

Mementoes: Initially, each finisher got a simple certificate to mark their completion of the event, but since 1991 the memento has been a drinks-coaster; some ‘regulars’ in the event now have quite a collection. Good-quality T-shirts are also produced each year, available for sale on the day

Race Personnel: Of the race’s originators, David Salmond died of leukemia in 1994; Alan Lawson continues as the main organiser, helped by many friends and relations who have both run and assisted over the years.

The Course

The course is a combination of road-running, cross-country, hill-running, and urban orienteering. The total distance is a little over 14 miles, and there’s about 2200 feet of ascent/descent. There are, unfortunately, many road-crossings, quite a few of them major roads.
There are five water-stations on the course; these are at or near the checkpoints. They have water, orange squash, and sultanas; they also have first-aid kits.

Calton Hill is the Start and Finish point. Competitors have to find their own route, as the course is not marked, but they must pass through the 6 checkpoints in the following order (and punch their race-number there with clippers):-

  • The Castle (esplanade)
  • Corstorphine Hill
  • Craiglockhart Hill (East)
  • Braid Hill
  • Blackford Hill
  • Arthur’s Seat

Route-finding: choosing the optimal route is all part of the event, and the course does change slightly over the years, due to growing shrubbery, altered field-use, increasing road-traffic, and hill-erosion. In the fortnight before each year’s event, it is common to find entrants out on the course evaluating the options. Harvey’s useful Edinburgh Seven Hills Map is displayed on the day at Calton Hill (it can be bought in map-shops).

Route guide: For those unfamiliar with the fine detail of Edinburgh’s geography, the website has a detailed rough guide for getting safely round the course. Faster runners may find a quicker route!

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RACE TROPHIES

There are 4 main, very unusual trophies —
a Race trophy and a Women’s trophy. These consist of pieces of volcanic lava from Arthur’s Seat.

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VETS TROPHIES

There is also a Male Vet (over 50) trophy, and a Female Vet (over 45) trophy.

Old rocks for old crocks!

Edinburgh Doubles

For those especially-heroic runners who complete ‘the double’ for the year — The Edinburgh Marathon AND The Seven Hills of Edinburgh — there’s a whisky miniature.

There are also many other prizes, including age-category ones.

Dutch Connection

Seven Dutch runners are entered once again in 2016. On the night before the event, a barbecue is staged for all overseas entrants. In recent years this has been held at the Midmar Allotments, beside Blackford Hill. Williams Brothers excellent beers are normally served.

Portobello Runners is the top club for supporting the event. Their website is also impressive.

The Southside Six is the equivalent event in Glasgow.

Points of Interest

Viewing-point: In the 1990s, an information-board was erected at the top of Braid Hill, specifically describing the seven hills which make up the course. The prime mover of this initiative was John Bartholomew, of the famous map-making company.

Special Map: A special Seven Hills map has been commercially produced, and is available in many Edinburgh bookshops. It is produced by Harvey’s of Doune (tel. 01786-841202), and gives a detailed depiction of each hill.
www.harveymaps.co.uk

Fireworks: The organisers of Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations have taken up the seven hills theme; fireworks are set off from each of the hills at midnight, to welcome in the new year.

Music: In 1988, a musical composition by Neil Butterworth entitled “The Seven Hills March” was played at the tops of the 7 hills by members of the Edinburgh Youth Orchestra.

Television: The event has featured once on television. Channel 4’s sport department appeared in 1997 — the only year the event has ever suffered from heavy rain!

 

 

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                Runners on Arthur’s Seat

Past Winners

Race winner Women’s winner M50 vet F45 vet
2015 Dessie Flanagan Megan Crawford Stewart Whitlie Rhona Anderson
2014 Iain Whiteside Nicola Duncan Peter Buchanan Rhona Anderson
2013 Ross Houston Jennifer MacLean Peter Buchanan Susan Johnston
2012 Michael Reid Eilis McKechanie Stewart Whitlie Susan Johnston
2011 Ross Houston Jennifer MacLean Willie Jarvie Phyllis O’Brien
2010 Matt Bell Lucy Colquhoun P. Mack Phyllis O’Brien
2009 David Simpson Amelia Lloyd Phillip Huxley Phyllis Mitchell
2008 Simon Peachey Jill Mykura Martin Hulme Judith Dobson
2007 Simon Peachey Jill Mykura Martin Caldwell Phyllis Mitchell
2006 Stewart Whitlie Kim Threadgall Martin Hulme Gillian McKelvie
2005 Stewart Whitlie Gillian Godfree Werner Kittel ?
2004 Stewart Whitlie Gillian Godfree Martin Caldwell Gillian McKelvie
2003 Graeme Ackland Claire Williams Scott Balfour
2002 Martin Flynn Angela Mudge I. D. Cumming
2001 Graeme Ackland Kate Jenkins Chris Northam
2000 Martin Flynn Anna Bausili Scott Balfour
1999 Graeme Ackland Karen Newman
1998 Stewart Whitlie Kate Jenkins
1997 Neil Wilkinson Joyce Salvona
1996 Graeme Ackland Joyce Salvona
1995 Andy Kitchin Karen Dobbie
1994 John Wilkinson Janice Christie
1993 Graeme Ackland Joyce Salvona
1992 Graeme Ackland Joyce Salvona
1991 Graeme Ackland Joyce Salvona
1990 Bill Gauld Miranda Balfour
1989 John Wilkinson Tricia Calder
1988 Alan Farningham Patricia Calder
1987 Mike Lindsay Penny Rother
1986 Michael Burton Stephanie Quirk
1985 Andy Spenceley Ann Curtis
1984 Zen Bankowski Ann Curtis
1983 Andy Spenceley A. Bauermeister
1982 Brian Kirkwood ?
1981 Sandy Keith ?
1980 Sandy Keith

Entry Form

Go to www.seven-hills.org.uk/entry.asp

The Entry Form is provided as a Microsoft Word file.

Postal entries are accepted up until 5 days before the event, if places are still available.

(No on-the-day entries)

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Runners cross the grounds of Holyrood Palace

Portobellorunners.co.uk/archived-reports-to-august-2010 has reports by successful participants. For example, look up 2008 and scroll down to find ‘Recce of 7 Hills Route’ and ‘Seven Hills report’.

Memories of the first ever race on Saturday 28th June 1980

“A week after I (Colin Youngson) had finished second in the Scottish marathon championship, my skinny legs were still tired and a bit sore, but this event seemed a great innovation and could not be missed. The original route actually started inside the walls of Edinburgh Castle, so competitors did not actually have to run up the first hill! Instead, we poured through a gap and down steep, narrow, winding paths, out through Princes Street Gardens and turned left. Down to Haymarket, straight on for a while, and eventually a slanting right turn onto a long gradual road hill which took us up to the top of Corstorphine Hill. By now, my redoubtable road running rival, Sandy Keith, was drawing away, moving strongly. I suspect he had a clear idea about the precise route, unlike myself, who possessed only a hazy notion. I just wanted to get round, hopefully avoiding defeat by many new rivals! As Sandy disappeared, never to be seen again, until the finish, I overshot the hill and belted down a road to the left. As I reached the main Corstorphine Road, I was mildly dismayed to note four of my training mates sneaking out through the Zoo gates. Ah, well. Since my orienteering skills were obviously lacking, I decided to tag along for a while.

My Edinburgh-savvy companions, including Dave Logue and Davie Watson, did not, as rumour had suggested, cut into people’s front gardens, muscle straight through their houses and escape via back gates, but cunning shortcuts were used. I waited patiently until we reached ground which seemed more familiar, from racing or training. Approaching Craiglockhart, I mused about the great poets Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon meeting in the hospital there during World War One. Up and over: no problem if you are merely following! Braid Hill was better-known, since it was Edinburgh University’s home cross-country course, which I had raced often, back in the late 1960s, while I was an Aberdeen University harrier.  From the top, one could see Blackford Hill Observatory.

On the climb up Blackford, I tried a little harder and, fairly confident of navigating round the rest of the race, edged away from my friends. Somehow I found an adequately direct route to Arthur’s Seat, and then had to pick one of several paths to the summit. Luckily I selected a good one. It was hard work scrambling up to the trig point, but then came the dodgy bit. My downhill running was very amateurish – partly because of fear and lack of suitable quad strength, but mainly because I had not undergone the lobotomy operation, which was essential if one were to become a good hill runner!

Somehow I avoided tripping, injury and generally making a fool of myself. A horde of phantom tough guys pursued hotly, jumping over cliffs and probably baying like bloodhounds – but they existed only in my tired mind. Fortunately I ran through the right streets for Calton Hill and then it was a puffing plod to the finish, at least a couple of minutes in front of the cavalry charge of true hill-men. Sandy had managed about one hour 38 minutes, and I was probably about ten minutes slower, but hey! Another very interesting running adventure had been completed. My running diary noted: “Legs knackered but basic fitness helped, so jogged home as well. £8 Runsport voucher and certificate. Prizes presented by (1964 Olympian) Fergus Murray.”

Ross Houston, who is at present one of the finest distance runners in Scotland, won the race in 2011 and 2013 and remembers the following.

“I ran the 7 Hills Race twice, in 2011 and in 2013. In both years, I was looking for something a bit different after building up to and running spring marathons (Edinburgh in ’11 and London in ’13).

Since the event was in my back yard, and combined road running with some less familiar off-road scrambling and hill climbing, this was an obvious choice. In 2011, I prepared quite meticulously, studying maps and going for several recce runs, sometimes with other runners with more route knowledge than myself (e.g. Tom Ferrington). I had it all planned, but remained a bit nervous about particular sections, such as trying to squeeze through the bars of the gate at Pollock Halls, and not really knowing the route up Arthur’s Seat (how difficult can it be? – very, as it turns out). I was also aware of other key route decisions, such as whether to charge straight over Braid Burn or to take a longer but safer route over a bridge (charged over the burn in the end).

The race started with an excellent atmosphere. There is something unusual and a bit special about dashing over North Bridge in a large group of runners, as motorists and tourists stare in awe / astonishment. I was actually quite far back down the field at the Castle, but steadily moved through and had taken the lead by the time we approached Corstorphine Hill. The run from Corstorphine to Craiglockhart is straightforward, albeit runners need their wits about them for road crossings. The climb up Craiglockhart Hill is bloody hard, but nearly manageable if underfoot conditions are kind. In the wet, wearing racing flats, it’s a nightmare! Sneaking through the aptly named ‘fly walk’ towards Braidburn Park, a more gradual climb to the Braids was rewarded with outstanding views and a fast descent to follow.

I decided to take the safe (but stupid) option of running round, rather than through, Pollock Halls, which probably added a good 30 seconds. Then the climb up Arthur’s Seat was a case of applying the logic that if I kept going up then I’d get there eventually. After kindly requesting tourists to allow me some space to reach the checkpoint on the summit, there was another fast descent to the palace, before the sting in the tail up to Calton Hill. A load of pink ladies were circulating Arthur’s Seat as part of a fun run, and the second placed runner in the 7 Hills (Al Anthony) had an ‘incident’ , while trying to dodge spectators and their not-fully-under-control canine friends.

In the end, in both years, I won the race in around 1 hr 38 min, which was decent (indeed a record) for the modern era, but not a patch on the fast dudes from the 80s/90s. At least in 2011, the race was followed by some serious rehydration at one of the (many) nearby pubs, and an unsteady walk / bus ride home carrying the impressive trophy (a piece of ‘volcanic’ rock from Arthur’s Seat). One of the great things about the 7 Hills is that (if you’re local) you tend to pass across the route frequently, and you can bore whoever you are with (for me, usually my wife) by pointing out the route and its nuances. Another plus point to the 7 Hills as a race, is that it really combines road running and hill running skills quite nicely. A pure road runner will grind to a stop on some of the steeper sections, while an out-and-out hill runner won’t enjoy the long flat sections of the route. Unfortunately, like many good events, it suffers from hysterical online entering syndrome, that results in it filling up very quickly. In summary, a great event with an impressive history and long may it continue.”

Rhona Anderson, who recently won the W45 race twice, wrote the following.

2014 was my first time running the event. This was great fun and a bit of an adventure as I wasn’t entirely sure of the route. I definitely went a long way round after the Braid Hills golf course, as runners behind me were then ahead on Blackford Hill! I followed some Dutch runners up a very steep climb on rocks up Arthur’s Seat, which was not for the faint hearted! My descent back and across Holyrood Park was definitely not the most direct but I made it back to Calton Hill.

In 2015 I ran some of the course with a club-mate in advance, so found a couple of shortcuts I didn’t know about, and also decided that the steepest option up Arthur’s Seat wasn’t necessarily the fastest. I ran almost 3 minutes faster than in 2014, which was all down to taking a better route in places. Still didn’t get the best way to Blackford Hill right, as again runners behind me ended up ahead somehow – so there is still room to improve in 2016!

There are also two articles about a pint-drinking version of this race!

7 hills 7 beers

On the blog of Peter Buchanan of Portobello

7 hills and 7 beers record

On the Carnethy Hill Running Club website

Tom Scott Road Race: Veterans Trophy Winners

B Carty, D fairweather, Cairnpapple Vets Hill Race, 1984

Brian Carty and David Fairweather, Cairnpapple, 1985

The Tom Scott really is one of the country’s classic road races: when it started it was by far the biggest and most popular on the circuit and it has consistently attracted the top athletes.   This of course includes veterans and many of them have finished well up and, on occasion, been in the top three.   Colin Youngson has used a variety of sources to make a comprehensive list of veterans trophy winners from the race to add to the race profile and the list of statistics compiled by Mick McGeogh.

The Turnbull Rose Bowl (1st Male Vet 40+

1976 Gordon Eadie Cambuslang H  1977 Alastair Wood Cambuslang H

1978 Hamish Scott Perth Strathtay  1979 Hamish Scott Perth Strathtay

1980 Jim Ash Garnock Valley AC     1981 Bert McKay Clyde Valley AC

1982 Martin Craven ESH                   1983 Donald Macgregor Fife AC  49.40

1984 Don Macgregor Fife AC  49.51 1985 Brian Carty Shettleston 52.17

1986 Allan Adams Dumbarton AAC  49.12 1987 Brian Carty Shett H 50.01

1988 Jack Adair Linlithgow AAC 51.07    

1989 NO RACE

1990 Colin Youngson Aberdeen AAC   49.31 1991 Tom Graham Fife AC

1992 Colin Youngson Aberdeen AAC   51.21

1993 Brian Kirkwood LDRC 47.51 1994 B. Kirkwood LDRC 48.39   

1995 Charlie McDougall Cambus 50.45  1996 B. Kirkwood Mizuno RC 51.07

1997 Neil Simpson Aberdeen AAC  53.13 1998 B. Kirkwood Mizuno RC 50.46

1999 Frank Barton Cambuslang H 52.20 2000 B. Kirkwood Miz RC 51.53

2001 Colin Meek Lothian AC  57.12       

2002 Andy McLinden Hamilton Harriers 54.20

2003 Dave Thom Ronhill Cambus 53.54

Strathclyde Park

2004 Andrew Robertson RonCa 53.39  2005 George Sim Moray RR 55.36

2006 Andy Little Shett H 54.51        2007 Andy Little Shett H 53.23

2008 Andy Little Shett H 52.40     2009 Graeme Croll Giffnock N 54.18

2010 David Millar Irvine AC 51.15    2011 David Millar Irvine AC 52.35

2012 Kerry-Liam Wilson Ron Cam 52.39 2013 K-L Wilson Ron Cam 51.39

2014 David Millar Irvine AC 54.47    2015 David Millar Irvine AC 51.50

The Jackie Gourlay Trophy 1st Male Vet 50+

2007 Andy McLinden Hamilton H 58.45

2008 Paul Thompson Helensburgh AC 58.10

2009 Paul Thompson Hel AC 58.46 2010 Ian Stewart Carnegie H 58.12

2011 Mark Hall Barnsley AC 59.08  2012 Paul Thompson Hel AC 57.54

2013 James Gallacher   Kirkintilloch Olympians 59.54

2014 Colin Feechan Ron Cam 62.04   2015 Nick Milovsorov Unatt. 54.31

Tom Scott Statistics

Mick McGeogh from South Wales put together the following statistical information about the Tom Scot Road Race from its inception in 1962 right up to the present (2015)    It includes comprehensive results, most wins for men and for women, and every sub 50 minute clocking.   It is also on the ARRS website, address on the document.

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Mile Road Race

Law to Motherwell SCO

Web Site: http://www.scottishdistancerunninghistory.scot/tom-scott-10-miles

Race Winners (53 runnings)

05 Apr 2015 49:22 Craig Ruddy (SCO) 56:48 Megan Crawford (SCO)
13 Apr 2014 53:21 Robert Gilroy (SCO) 62:43 Lisa Finlay (SCO)
07 Apr 2013 50:25 Robbie Simpson (SCO) 58:08 Fiona Matheson (SCO) – 2
08 Apr 2012 49:55 Tewoldeberhan Mengisteab (ERI) 57:45 Gemma Rankin (SCO) – 2
10 Apr 2011 50:08 Tsegai Twelde (ERI) 60:08 Gemma Rankin (SCO)
11 Apr 2010 48:36 Tsegezab Woldemichael (ERI) – 3 59:24 Fiona Matheson (SCO)
12 Apr 2009 49:24 Tsegezab Woldemichael (ERI) – 2 57:15 Toni McIntosh (SCO) – 2
13 Apr 2008 50:20 Tsegezab Woldemichael (ERI) 63:28 Michelle Hetherington (SCO)
08 Apr 2007 51:46 David Millar (SCO) 59:10 Annabel Granger (ENG)
25 Mar 2006 51:29 Glen Stewart (SCO) – 2 65:02 Claire Couper (SCO)
03 Apr 2005 49:24 Glen Stewart (SCO) 60:39 Toni McIntosh (SCO)
12 Apr 2004 52:12 Ben Hukins (SCO) 59:11 Jill Shannon (IRE)
06 Apr 2003 48:25 Stephen Wylie (SCO) – 2 56:11 Trudi Thomson (SCO) – 2
07 Apr 2002 49:46 Jamie Reid (SCO) – 2 58:16 Trudi Thomson (SCO)
07 Apr 2001 50:24 Jamie Reid (SCO) 59:25 Addy Gerrard (SCO)
09 Apr 2000 48:28 Allan Adams (SCO) – 2 56:16 Sandra Branney (SCO) – 3
10 Apr 1999 49:18 Tommy Murray (SCO) – 3 59:23 Marlene Gemmell (SCO)
05 Apr 1998 48:38 Tommy Murray (SCO) – 2 57:27 Tracey Brindley (SCO)
13 Apr 1997 49:35 Billy Coyle (SCO) 53:56 Yvonne Murray (SCO) – 2
14 Apr 1996 47:54 Allan Adams (SCO) 63:16 Kim Fisher (SCO)
09 Apr 1995 47:35 Adrian Callan (SCO) 53:57 Vicki McPherson (SCO)
10 Apr 1994 48:15 Tommy Murray (SCO) 58:16 Elaine McBrinn (SCO)
11 Apr 1993 47:29 Stephen Wylie (SCO) 53:42 Karen MacLeod (SCO)
05 Apr 1992 48:05 Mike Carroll (SCO) 56:12 Sandra Branney (SCO) – 2
06 Apr 1991 47:31 Nat Muir (SCO) 54:05 Sandra Branney (SCO)
07 Apr 1990 47:20 George Braidwood (SCO) 57:54 Penny Rother (SCO)
1989 Race not held (no race sponsorship)
09 Apr 1988 47:38 Alex Gilmour (SCO) 54:30 Sharon Sinclair (SCO) – 3
04 Apr 1987 47:38 Lawrie Spence (SCO) – 2 54:50 Sharon Sinclair (SCO) – 2
05 Apr 1986 47:09 Lawrie Spence (SCO) 55:30 Sharon Sinclair (SCO)
13 Apr 1985 49:24 Alan Puckrin (SCO) 66:42 Palm Gunstone (SCO)
07 Apr 1984 47:09 John Graham (SCO) 54:49 Yvonne Murray (SCO)
09 Apr 1983 49:12 Lindsay Robertson (SCO)
03 Apr 1982 46:05 Allister Hutton (SCO)
04 Apr 1981 47:39 Yasunori Hamada (JAP)
12 Apr 1980 46:34 Jim Brown (SCO) – 3
07 Apr 1979 48:04 Jim Brown (SCO) – 2
01 Apr 1978 46:39 Jim Dingwall (SCO) – 4
02 Apr 1977 49:40 Jim Dingwall (SCO) – 3
03 Apr 1976 47:10 Andy McKean (SCO) – 2
05 Apr 1975 46:33 Jim Brown (SCO)
06 Apr 1974 48:45 Jim Dingwall (SCO) – 2
07 Apr 1973 48:08 Jim Dingwall (SCO)
08 Apr 1972 47:45 Sam Downie (SCO)
03 Apr 1971 47:36 Andy McKean (SCO)
04 Apr 1970 47:47 Lachie Stewart (SCO) -2
05 Apr 1969 49:14 Ian McCafferty (SCO) -2
06 Apr 1968 48:39 Ian McCafferty (SCO)
01 Apr 1967 46:51 Lachie Stewart (SCO)
02 Apr 1966 48:06 Andy Brown (SCO) – 2
03 Apr 1965 47:34 Jim Alder (SCO)
04 Apr 1964 49:27 Alastair Wood (SCO)
20 Apr 1963 47:59 John Linaker (SCO)
07 Apr 1962 50:33 Andy Brown (SCO)

Most Wins (1962-date)

Men

4 Jim Dingwall 1973-4, 1977-8

Ladies

3 Sharon Sinclair

Sandra Branney

1986-88

1991-2, 2000

 

History: Tom Scott was a dedicated member of Motherwell YMCA Harriers throughout the 1950s until his tragic death in a road accident whilst travelling to a race in England in 1960. He had been club cross country champion in 1953/54 and 1954/55 and was a Scottish YMCA international from 1953 to 1959. Tom’s regular training run between his home in Law and his work place in Motherwell became the original route used for the race. The first race was held in 1962, organised by John Kerr the 1961 Scottish AAA Marathon Champion who had been one of Tom Scott’s regular training partners.

 

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

05 April 2015 Men (inc Scottish Champs)

1 49:22   Craig Ruddy (SCO)                     10 Apr 1988

2 49:26   Tewoldeberhan Mengisteab (ERI)               1986

3 49:37   Michael Crawley (SCO)                 20 Nov 1987

Ladies (inc Scottish Champs)

1 56:48   Megan Crawford (SCO)                 17 Apr 1989

2 58:07   Gemma Rankin (SCO)                   18 Dec 1984

 

13 April 2014 Men (inc Scottish Champs)

1 53:21   Robert Gilroy (SCO)                   30 Apr 1976

Ladies (inc Scottish Champs)

1 62:43   Lisa Finlay (SCO)                     13 Jul 1969

 

07 April 2013 Men (inc Scottish Champs)

1 50:25   Robbie Simpson (SCO)                 14 Nov 1991

25 1:00:02 Francis Hurley (SCO)                17 Sep 1952

28 1:01:45 Andrew McLinden (SCO)                 02 Apr 1951

66 1:09:01 Robin Scott (SCO)                     04 Apr 1944

71 1:10:00 Peter Cartwright (SCO)               11 Oct 1942

86 1:12:18 Ian Donnelly (SCO)                   21 Mar 1946

1361:23:51 Ian Leggett (SCO)                     26 Apr 1939

Ladies (inc Scottish Champs)

1 58:08   Fiona Matheson (SCO)                 25 Apr 1961

2 58:20   Joasia Zakrzewski (SCO)               19 Jan 1976

3 58:26   Jennifer Wetton (Emsley) (SCO)       28 Nov 1986

 

08 April 2012 Men (inc Scottish Champs)

1 49:55   Tewoldeberhan Mengisteab (ERI)               1986

2 50:08   Ross Houston (SCO)                   05 Dec 1979

3 50:17   Andrew Douglas (SCO)                 19 Dec 1986

89 1:11:02 Peter Cartwright (SCO)               11 Oct 1942

1441:22:11 Ian Leggett (SCO)                     26 Apr 1939

Ladies (inc Scottish Champs)

1 57:45   Gemma Rankin (SCO)                   18 Dec 1984

2 58:54   Jennifer MacLean (SCO)               28 Nov 1973

3 59:43   Fiona Matheson (SCO)                 25 Apr 1961

4 1:00:47 Morgan Windram (PA/USA)                     1981

8 1:03:47 Kim Spence (SCO)                     30 Sep 1977

35 1:15:40 Kate Todd (SCO)                       21 Jul 1950

40 1:26:26 Betty Gilchrist (SCO)                 20 Sep 1944

 

10 April 2011 Men (inc Scottish Champs)

1 50:08   Tsegai Twelde (ERI)                   08 Dec 1989

1 50:13   Teweldeberhan Mengisteab (ERI)               1986

2 50:31   Ross Houston (SCO)                   05 Dec 1979

Ladies (inc Scottish Champs)

1 60:08   Gemma Rankin (SCO)                   18 Dec 1984

2 62:13   Megan Crawford (SCO)                 17 Apr 1989

 

11 April 2010 Men

1 48:36   Tsegezab Woldemichael (ERI)           20 Feb 1983

2 48:53   Neil Renault (SCO)                    30 Jul 1983

3 50:53   Teweldeberhan Mengisteab (ERI)               1986

 Ladies

1 59:24   Fiona Matheson (SCO)                 25 Apr 1961

 

12 April 2009 Men

1 49:24 Tsegezab Woldemichael (ERI)           20 Feb 1983

2 49:50   Teweldeberhan Mengisteab (ERI)               1986

Ladies

1 57:15   Toni McIntosh (SCO)                   26 Nov 1979

2 58:58   Alison McDonald (SCO)                12 Jun 1979

 

13 April 2008 Men

1 50:20   Tsegezab Woldemichael (ERI)           20 Feb 1983

2 50:48   Paul Arcari (SCO)                     10 Oct 1982

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

13 April 2008 Ladies

1 63:28   Michelle Hetherington (SCO)           16 May 1964

 

08 April 2007 Men

1 51:46   David Millar (SCO)                   09 Jul 1969

2 52:28   Robert Gilroy (SCO)                   30 Apr 1976

Ladies

1 59:10   Annabel Granger (ENG)                 19 May 1973

2 59:40   Elke Prasad (SCO/GER)

 

25 March 2006 Men

1 51:29   Glen Stewart (SCO)                   07 Dec 1970

Ladies

1 65:02   Claire Couper (SCO)                   12 Mar 1975

 

03 April 2005 Men

1 49:24   Glen Stewart (SCO)                   07 Dec 1970

2 51:05   AC Muir (SCO)                        20 Jun 1973

3 54:41   Robert Gilroy (SCO)                   30 Apr 1976

Ladies

1 60:39   Toni McIntosh (SCO)                   26 Nov 1979

 

12 April 2004 Men

1 52:12   Ben Hukins (SCO)                     16 Jul 1978

Ladies

1 59:11   Jill Shannon (IRE)                           1985

 

06 April 2003 Men

1 48:25   Stephen Wylie (SCO)                   12 Nov 1971

2 48:51   Jamie Reid (SCO)                     06 Jul 1973

3 48:52   Allan Adams (SCO)                     11 Sep 1972

Ladies

1 56:11   Trudi Thomson (SCO)                   18 Nov 1959

2 59:09   Elaine McBrinn (SCO)                 19 Dec 1963

 

07 April 2002 Men

1 49:46   Jamie Reid (SCO)                     06 Jul 1973

2 50:13   Tommy Murray (SCO)                   18 May 1961

Ladies

1 58:16   Trudi Thomson (SCO)                   18 Nov 1959

2 59:08   Toni McIntosh (SCO)                   26 Nov 1979

3 59:24   Elaine McBrinn (SCO)                 19 Dec 1963

4 59:33   Lindsay Cunningham (SCO)             02 Dec 1971

 

07 April 2001 Men

1 50:24   Jamie Reid (SCO)                     06 Jul 1973

Ladies

1 59:25   Addy Gerrard (SCO)                   24 Nov 1959

 

09 April 2000 Men

1 48:28   Allan Adams (SCO)                     11 Sep 1972

2 48:47   Tommy Murray (SCO)                   18 May 1961

3 49:12   Billy Coyle (SCO)                     03 Oct 1962

4 49:27   Alex Robertson (SCO)                 06 May 1963

 Ladies

1 56:16   Sandra Branney (SCO)                 30 Apr 1954

2 56:47   Marlene Gemmell (SCO)                 21 Jun 1972

3 57:52   Claire Couper (SCO)                   12 Mar 1975

 

0 April 1999 Men

1 49:18   Tommy Murray (SCO)                   18 May 1961

2 49:49   Allan Adams (SCO)                     11 Sep 1972

Ladies

1 59:23   Marlene Gemmell (SCO)                 21 Jun 1972

 

05 April 1998 Men

1 48:38   Tommy Murray (SCO)                   18 May 1961

Ladies

1 57:27 Tracey Brindley (SCO)                 25 Aug 1972

2 58:29 Lindsay Cairns (SCO)

 

13 April 1997 Men

1 49:35   Billy Coyle (SCO)                     03 Oct 1962

2 50:00   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

Ladies

1 53:56   Yvonne Murray (SCO)                  04 Oct 1964

 

14 April 1996 Men

1 47:54   Allan Adams (SCO)                     11 Sep 1972

2 51:07   Brian Kirkwood (SCO)                 20 Sep 1952

Ladies

1 63:16   Kim Fisher (SCO)

 

09 April 1995 Men

1 47:35   Adrian Callan (SCO)                   28 Nov 1962

2 47:54   Graeme Wight (SCO)                   03 Jun 1965

3 48:08   Brian Kirkwood (SCO)                 20 Sep 1952

4 48:10   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

5 49:35   Billy Coyle (SCO)                     03 Oct 1962

6 49:51   Carl Heaven (SCO)                     21 Feb 1971

Ladies

1 53:57   Vicki McPherson (SCO)                01 Jun 1971

2 56:41   Audrey Sym (SCO)                     02 Aug 1966

3 57:33   Elaine McBrinn (SCO)                 19 Dec 1963

 

10 April 1994 Men

1 48:15   Tommy Murray (SCO)                   18 May 1961

2 48:39   Brian Kirkwood (SCO)                 20 Sep 1952

3 49:31   Billy Coyle (SCO)                     03 Oct 1962

Ladies

1 58:16   Elaine McBrinn (SCO)                 19 Dec 1963

 

11 April 1993 Men

1 47:29   Stephen Wylie (SCO)                   12 Nov 1971

2 47:48   Terry Mitchell (SCO)                 23 Aug 1959

3 47:58   Brian Kirkwood (SCO)                 20 Sep 1952

4 47:58   David Ross (SCO)                     02 Nov 1965

5 48:13   Alan Robson (SCO)                     14 Nov 1959

6 49:02   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

7 49:57   Alastair Russell (SCO)               17 Jun 1968

Ladies

1 53:42   Karen MacLeod (SCO)                   24 Apr 1958

2 55:38   Anne Buckley (ENG)                   20 Jun 1967

3 57:12   Janet McColl (SCO)                   02 Jul 1956

4 58:25   Janette Stevenson (SCO)               03 May 1949

 

05 April 1992 Men

1 48:05   Mike Carroll (SCO)                   28 Jun 1958

2 48:54   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

3 49:04   Brian Kirkwood (SCO)                 20 Sep 1952

4 49:17   Alastair Russell (SCO)               17 Jun 1968

Ladies

1 56:12   Sandra Branney (SCO)                 30 Apr 1954

2 58:24   Vicki Vaughan (SCO)                   25 Oct 1968

 

06 April 1991 Men

1 47:31   Nat Muir (SCO)                        12 Mar 1958

2 47:55   Eddie Stewart (SCO)                   15 Dec 1956

3 47:56   Alastair Walker (SCO)                 25 May 1956

4 48:10   Bill Nelson (SCO)                     18 Feb 1957

5 48:44   Alastair Douglas (SCO)                10 Dec 1960

6 48:55   Kenneth Rankin (SCO)                 11 Dec 1956

7 48:59   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

8 49:19   Frank Harper (SCO)                   25 Jun 1957

9 49:22   Craig Ross (SCO)                     26 Jun 1955

10 49:37   Jim Orr (SCO)                         10 Jan 1965

11 49:41   Euan Wilkinson (SCO)

12 49:46   Jim Evans (SCO)                       21 Dec 1953

13 49:58   T Thomson (SCO)

 Ladies

1 54:05   Sandra Branney (SCO)                 30 Apr 1954

2 56:21   Eileen Masson (SCO)                   11 Mar 1958

 

07 April 1990 Men

1 47:20   George Braidwood (SCO)               03 Dec 1959

2 47:30   Fraser Clyne (SCO)                   23 Aug 1955

3 47:42   Peter Fox (SCO)                       22 Mar 1962

4 47:43   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

5 48:04   Peter Faulds (SCO)                   06 Jun 1962

6 48:24   Bill Nelson (SCO)                     18 Feb 1957

7 48:48   Alex Gilmour (SCO)                   21 Dec 1954

8 48:56   A McKoy (SCO)

9 48:56   Eddie Stewart (SCO)                   15 Dec 1956

10 49:08   Ken Mortimer (SCO)                   10 Aug 1960

11 49:18   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

12 49:29   Dermot McGonigle (SCO)               12 Feb 1962

13 49:31   Colin Youngson (SCO)                 27 Oct 1947

14 49:33   Kenneth Rankin (SCO)                 11 Dec 1956

Ladies

1 57:54   Penny Rother (SCO)                   15 Feb 1958

2 58:40   J Donnolly (SCO)

3 61:07   H Morton (SCO)

1989 – NO RACE (WITHDRAWAL OF SPONSORSHIP

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

09 April 1988 Men

1 47:48   Alex Gilmour (SCO)                   21 Dec 1954

2 47:39   Peter Fox (SCO)                       22 Mar 1962

3 48:58   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

4 49:36   Andy Daly (SCO)                       21 Apr 1960

5 49:52   Frank Harper (SCO)                   25 Jun 1957

Ladies

1 54:30   Sharon Sinclair (SCO)

2 56:49   Eileen Masson (SCO)                   11 Mar 1958

3 58:30   J Donnolly (SCO)

4 59:50   C Brown (SCO)

 

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

04 April 1987 Men

1 47:38   Lawrie Spence (SCO)                   16 Jul 1953

2 47:49   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

3 48:17   P Conaghan (SCO)

4 48:24   Andy Daly (SCO)                       21 Apr 1960

5 48:46   Steven Marshall (SCO)                 15 Oct 1965

6 49:09   Charlie Thompson (SCO)               17 Jun 1965

7 49:10   Steve Conaghan (SCO)                 18 May 1967

8 49:30   John Ross (SCO)                       18 Sep 1961

 Ladies

1 54:50   Sharon Sinclair (SCO)

2 59:46   Rose McAleese (SCO)

330 ran.

 

05 April 1986 Men

1 47:09   Lawrie Spence (SCO)                   16 Jul 1953

2 47:44   Peter Faulds (SCO)                  06 Jun 1962

3 47:58   John Duffy (SCO)                     10 Nov 1955

4 48:23   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

5 48:32   Jack Adair (SCO)                     09 Jan 1947

6 48:41   Colin Farquharson (SCO)

7 48:45   Peter Carton (SCO)                   21 Apr 1953

8 49:05   Fraser Graham (SCO)

9 49:06   Tom Ulliott (ENG)                     21 Aug 1956

10 49:12   Allan Adams (SCO)                     03 Jan 1944

11 49:30   Murray McNaught (SCO)                 30 Sep 1948

12 49:45   Peter Wilson (SCO)                   05 Feb 1956

Ladies

1 55:30   Sharon Sinclair (SCO)

 

13 April 1985 Men

1 49:24   Alan Puckrin (SCO)                   02 Apr 1964

2 50:49   Jim Brown (SCO)                       13 Sep 1952

 Ladies

1 66:42   Palm Gunstone (SCO)                         1946

 

07 April 1984 Men

1 47:09   John Graham (SCO)                    18 Jun 1956

2 47:42   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

3 48:12   Terry Mitchell (SCO)                 23 Aug 1959

 Ladies

1 54:49   Yvonne Murray (SCO)                   04 Oct 1964

2 58:47   Ann Curtis (SCO)                     04 Feb 1954

 

09 April 1983 Men

1 49:12   Lindsay Robertson (SCO)               28 Jun 1958

2 49:31   Terry Mitchell (SCO)                 23 Aug 1959

3 49:40   Don MacGregor (SCO)                   23 Jul 1939

4 49:54   Ian Elliot (SCO)                     28 Jan 1950

 

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

03 April 1982 Men

1 46:05   Allister Hutton (SCO)                 18 Jul 1954

2 46:27   Jim Brown (SCO)                      13 Sep 1952

3 46:41   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                   30 May 1949

4 46:49   Nat Muir (SCO)                       12 Mar 1958

5 47:23   Peter Fox (SCO)                       22 Mar 1962

6 48:12   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

7 48:37   George Braidwood (SCO)               03 Dec 1959

8 48:42   Evan Cameron (SCO)                   18 Sep 1955

9 48:53   Andrew Robertson (SCO)               25 Mar 1957

10 48:58   Peter Fleming (SCO)                   05 Jan 1961

11 49:22   Colin Keir (SCO)

12 49:26   Andy Daly (SCO)                       21 Apr 1960

13 49:38   Craig Ross (SCO)                     26 Jun 1965

14 49:44   Charlie McDougall (SCO)               30 Sep 1948

 

04 April 1981 Men

1 47:39   Yasunori Hamada (JAP)                 25 Mar 1946

2 47:40   Jim Brown (SCO)                       13 Sep 1952

3 49:46   Colin Farquharson (SCO)

185 starters.

 

12 April 1980 Men

1 46:34   Jim Brown (SCO)                       13 Sep 1952

2 47:56   Allister Hutton (SCO)                 18 Jul 1954

3 48:43   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                   30 May 1949

4 48:56   Colin Farquharson (SCO)

5 49:13   Martin Craven (SCO)                  15 Dec 1940

6 49:16   Graham Clark (SCO)                   31 Mar 1956

7 49:21   Douglas Frame (SCO)                   22 Sep 1955

8 49:42   A Coutts (SCO)

9 49:49   Alex “Sandy” Keith (SCO)             23 Jan 1946

10 49:52   George Braidwood (SCO)               03 Dec 1959

 

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

07 April 1979 Men

1 48:04   Jim Brown (SCO)                       13 Sep 1952

2 49:19   Graham Laing (SCO)                   01 Nov 1956

3 49:26   Martin Craven (SCO)                   15 Dec 1940

4 49:46   Graham Milne (SCO)                   09 Nov 1947

5 49:48   Alastair McFarlane                   16 Nov 1945

 

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

01 April 1978 Men

1 46:39   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                    30 May 1949

2 46:40   Jim Brown (SCO)                       13 Sep 1952

3 47:49   John Graham (SCO)                     18 Jun 1956

4 48:57   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

5 49:19   Willie Day (SCO)                    11 Jul 1947

6 49:39   Doug Hunter (SCO)                     08 Jan 1958

7 49:58   Alex “Sandy” Keith (SCO)             23 Jan 1946

 

Tom Scott Memorial 10 Miles

02 April 1977 Men

1 49:40   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                    30 May 1949

2 49:41   Jim Brown (SCO)                       13 Sep 1952

3 49:42   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

4 50:27   John Graham (SCO)                     18 Jun 1956

 

03 April 1976 Men

1 47:10   Andy McKean (SCO)                     04 Jun 1948

2 47:53   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                    30 May 1949

3 48:19   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

 

05 April 1975 Men

1 46:33   Jim Brown (SCO)                     13 Sep 1952

2 46:59   Andy McKean (SCO)                     04 Jun 1948

3 47:41   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                    30 May 1949

4 47:47   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

5 48:11   Lawrie Spence (SCO)                   16 Jul 1953

6 48:14   Jim Wight (SCO)                       22 Oct 1944

7 48:56   Don MacGregor (SCO)                   23 Jul 1939

8 49:00   Alex Wight (SCO)                     05 Nov 1942

9 49:32   Bill Yate (SCO)

10 49:39   Nigel Bailey (SCO)                   21 Oct 1950

11 49:56   Willie Day (SCO)                     11 Jul 1947

94 finishers

 

06 April 1974 Men

1 48:45   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                   30 May 1949

2 48:46   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

3 48:48   Martin Craven (SCO)                   15 Dec 1940

 

07 April 1973 Men

1 48:08   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                    30 May 1949

2 48:22   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                  10 Jul 1950

3 48:28   Richard Wedlock (SCO)                 26 Jan 1946

4 48:28   Jim Wight (SCO)                       22 Oct 1944

5 48:32   Alex Wight (SCO)                     05 Nov 1942

6 48:37   Martin Craven (SCO)                   15 Dec 1940

7 49:38   Colin Martin (SCO)                   19 Jan 1947

8 49:58   Willie Day (SCO)                     11 Jul 1947

9 50:38   Sam Downie (SCO)

10 50:52   Bill Stoddart (SCO)                   02 May 1931

94 finishers

 

08 April 1972 Men

1 47:45   Sam Downie (SCO)

2 47:53   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

3 48:01   Willie Day (SCO)                     11 Jul 1947

4 48:08   Jim Wight (SCO)                       22 Oct 1944

5 48:17   Alex Wight (SCO)                     05 Nov 1942

6 48:42   Colin Martin (SCO)                   19 Jan 1947

7 49:02   Jim Dingwall (SCO)                    30 May 1949

8 49:10   Martin Craven (SCO)                   15 Dec 1940

9 49:40   Allan Faulds (SCO)                  30 Jan 1941

10 50:00   Phil Dolan (SCO)                     13 Jun 1951

 

1971 Men

1 47:36   Andy McKean (SCO)                     04 Jun 1948

2 48:15   Pat MacLagan (SCO)                   17 Jan 1944

3 48:21   Richard Wedlock (SCO)                 26 Jan 1946

4 48:22   Doug Gunstone (SCO)                   10 Jul 1950

5 48:30   Jim Wight (SCO)                       22 Oct 1944

6 48:32   Alex Wight (SCO)                     05 Nov 1942

7 49:33   Colin Martin (SCO)                   19 Jan 1947

8 49:38   Colin Youngson (SCO)                 27 Oct 1947

9 49:50   Henry Summerhill (SCO)

10 49:52   Don Ritchie (SCO)                     06 Jul 1944

 

04 April 1970 Men

1 47:47  Lachie Stewart (SCO)                 22 Jun 1943

2 48:17   Richard Wedlock (SCO)                 26 Jan 1946

3 48:52   Don MacGregor (SCO)                   23 Jul 1939

4 49:32   Allan Faulds (SCO)                   30 Jan 1941

5 49:45   Harry Gorman (SCO)                   08 Dec 1946

 

05 Apr 1969 Men

1 49:14   Ian McCafferty (SCO)                 24 Nov 1944

2 49:26   Lachie Stewart (SCO)                 22 Jun 1943

3 49:38   Richard Wedlock (SCO)                 26 Jan 1946

4 49:52   Gareth Bryan-Jones (SCO)             25 Feb 1943

 

06 April 1968 Men

1 48:39   Ian McCafferty (SCO)                 24 Nov 1944

2 48:49   Gareth Bryan-Jones (SCO)             25 Feb 1943

3 48:55  Alex Brown (SCO)                     09 Sep 1944

4 49:09   Ian Young (SCO)

5 49:14   Kenny Grant (SCO)

6 49:22   Andy Brown (SCO)                     11 Dec 1932

 

01 April 1967 Men

1 46:41   Lachie Stewart (SCO)                  22 Jun 1943

2 47:23   Ian McCafferty (SCO)                 24 Nov 1944

3 47:39   Andy Brown (SCO)                     11 Dec 1932

4 48:01   Ian Young (SCO)

5 48:44   Alastair Wood (SCO)                   13 Jan 1933

6 48:48   Alistair Blamire (SCO)               13 Jul 1946

7 49:03   Pat MacLagan (SCO)                   17 Jan 1944

8 49:10   Alex Brown (SCO)                     09 Sep 1944

9 49:17   Don MacGregor (SCO)                   23 Jul 1939

10 49:23   George Brown (SCO)

11 49:50   T Smith (SCO)

12 49:58   J McKay (SCO)

 

02 April 1966 Men

1 48:06   Andy Brown (SCO)                     11 Dec 1932

2 48:55   Jim Alder (SCO)                       10 Jun 1940

3 49:24   Jim Brennan (SCO)

4 49:46   Alastair Wood (SCO)                   13 Jan 1933

5 49:55   Gareth Bryan-Jones (SCO)             25 Feb 1943

 

03 April 1965 Men

1 47:34   Jim Alder (SCO)                       10 Jun 1940

2 47:40   Andy Brown (SCO)                    11 Dec 1932

3 48:45   Lachie Stewart (SCO)                 22 Jun 1943

4 49:07   Alex Brown (SCO)                     09 Sep 1944

5 49:14   Alastair Wood (SCO)                   13 Jan 1933

 

04 April 1964 Men

1 49:27   Alastair Wood (SCO)                   13 Jan 1933

2 49:33   Andy Brown (SCO)                     11 Dec 1932

 

20 April 1963 Men

1 47:59   John Linaker (SCO)                   16 Nov 1939

2 48:17   Andy Brown (SCO)                     11 Dec 1932

 

07 Apr 1962 Men

1 50:33   Andy Brown (SCO)                     11 Dec 1932

2 51:06   John Linaker (SCO)                   16 Nov 1939

3 51:41   Bert McKay (SCO)                     13 Dec 1935

 

Key: Andy Brown often documented as A H Brown; Alex Brown as A P Brown.

*

Mick McGeogh (born 15th August 1955) has had a very good career in athletics as an all-round endurance runner of quality. He has run 79 marathons (PB 2.17.58), has hardly missed a London Marathon, and ran for his beloved Wales as a Senior (10 miles, half marathon and many marathons) and as a Masters runner (in the annual British and Irish Cross Country International). He was also a successful ultra-distance runner, winning the Barry 40 and the Two Bridges 36, as well as finishing 3rd in the 1989 London to Brighton 53 miles. Mick represented GB in the World 100km Championship; and  in a marathon in India. In 2005 he won the British Masters M50 marathon title. Mick runs for Les Croupiers in Barry, South Wales. He is a keen running historian. Of course his main achievements are being the most cheerful Welshman ever; and of being the only man from his country to win a medal in the Scottish Marathon Championship (bronze in 1989).

Mick collated the above statistics for the ARRS website (Association of Road Running Statisticians). If you don’t know it and you are interested in endurance running, runners, race histories or even trivia, you will get such information there.

 

 

McAndrew Personals

Personals 1

The question is: What do Hugh Barrow (No4) and John Tarrant (no number) have in common?

For those of the present generation, the old notion of amateurism v professionalism is uncharted territory.   Athletes in the twenty first century find it hard to imagine runners not getting money prizes – even children are able to win money in the Highland Games circuit.   But for many, many years money was taboo.   The belief, not entirely without foundation in their experience, brought corruption in its wake.   In the 1890’s several athletes were banned for accepting expenses and schemes such as ‘ringing’ (several athletes agreeing among themselves to pool their prize money and then share it out between them) and deciding who was going to win were often indulged in.    In the twenty first century with big money prizes on offer and obscene financial deals available to winners in the major Games has led to the abuse of drugs, etc.    However the knock-on effect on everyday athletes was disproportionate.   There is the famous story of the child who won a packet of fruit gums being banned from amateur athletics.    I have just bought a book called “The Ghost Runner” by Bill Jones about John Tarrant who had, as a 17 year old got £17 in expenses as a boxer being totally banned from amateur athletics for life.   He ran in races, having changed behind a hedge or some trees and more often than not won them.  It’s a book worth reading.    I’ll come back to him.   Some of the situations experienced by athletes of the 50’s and 60’s are recounted below.   The latest addition is about the late nineteenth century professionalism and corruption in the sport in Scotland and comes largely from the official history of the SAAA’s by John Keddie.

This first piece was written by Hugh Barrow on what was for a long time an aspect of the sport that we could have well done without.   It was something that I knew about, disapproved of but which very seldom, if ever, bothered me.   Hugh had a talent and attitude that brought it to his attention and the tailpiece of his article is most interesting – and the mindset is probably incomprehensible to the modern athlete.   Hugh speaks:

Not so long ago, well maybe slightly longer ago than one would wish, there existed in Scottish athletics a form of apartheid between those who ran for money and those of the so-called amateur code and woe betide those who crossed the great divide.    That sounds simple but it was certainly not that.  A boy who accepted something like 20p in new money for a Sunday school race could lose his amateur status for life such was the draconian line taken by the Amateur authorities.   All this stemmed from the birth of the SAAA in 1883 born as a reaction to corruption in Victorian athletics, sometimes called Pedestrianism, including drugs, betting and race fixing.   Nothing new there you may say.   From that time to the 1970’s that body (the SAAA) saw itself as the guardian of the amateur code and woe betide anybody who crossed the line.   You were not even allowed to compete against the pros even though you yourself did not receive any cash prize such were the “contamination rules”.   At one point you could not compete in amateur athletics if you were a PE teacher and professional footballers who went to Jordanhill College to train as teachers could not represent the College at athletics.

The professional meetings/games tended to be in the Highlands and in the Borders while the amateur meetings tended to be in the Central Belt.   There were exceptions but that was the trend.   The professional games were often more amateur in spirit that the amateur meetings.   But that was the strangeness of it all.   It all hinged round accepting prize money instead of prizes. Even though the prizes could well exceed the prize money, it was the principle.   Ways of getting round the rules became part of the folklore.   Whilst broken-time payments eased professionalism into soccer, and saw the birth of Rugby League, more devious methods were adopted in athletics.   Amateur athletes sometimes ran under assumed names or in disguise at pro games to avoid the authorities.   One well-known field events athlete was caught out by his photo appearing in a Glasgow paper even though he had changed his name for the day.

Of course at the top level, appearance money also came into play especially in Europe.   One well-known Olympic gold medallist appeared in Dublin and proceeded to set a world record for which he was due a substantial purse.

Hugh appeared on the Scotsport television programme in 1966 (after all the hassle that Tarrant suffered as described below) and was contacted the following morning by Rab Foreman of the SAAA telling him that any money had to be repaid –  Hugh had to send the cheque for £1:1:0 back to STV!    The cheque and the letter are shown here – once the link is re-established, for a proper view, click on each picture in turn.

Hugh ran in many races in all sorts of places but on the subject of rewards for running and drawing in the crowds he has this to say about a race at Hawick in the mid 1960s: “In the aftermath of the Olympics in Tokyo in 1964, where both Alan Simpson (Rotherham) and John Whetton (Sutton) both made the final of the 1500m, they became the dominant force in British in the middle distance scene at a time when ‘invitation miles’ were highlights in the programme for many meetings the length and breadth of the country.   However  Whetton, the King of the Boards’, was dominant indoors and Simpson, the ‘Head Waiter’, dominated outdoors.    This outdoors domination of Simpson led to promoters starting to lose interest in putting on invitation miles so it was felt that Whetton had to get an outdoor win over his rival to whet spectator appetite.   So on a June Friday evening in 1965, we arrived at Mansefield Park, Hawick, for the Common Riding Invitation Mile.   The field also included former world record holder Derek Ibbotson, along with the likes of Teviotdale’s Craig Douglas, VP’s Graham Peters and myself.   It was felt that a Whetton win would help the attendance when the show rolled on to the Rockingham Miners’ Gala Day in Barnsley scheduled for the following day.   On a tight five laps to the mile grass track   laid out on the rugby pitch, such was the dominance of the dynamic duo, it was agreed that Whetton would edge out Simpson coming off the last bend.   However Graham Peters was not in the script and boxed Whetton in.   I can still hear him shout to Simpson that he had to go it alone.   As commentator we had the legendary Bill McLaren and although he sure knew his rugby he was a bit off the pace when it came to running and got a bit confused by what was happening.   probably just as well.   For the record:    1.  A Simpson   4:03.7;    2.   J Whetton   4:04.4;   3.   H Barrow   4:06.0

John Tarrant was a different case and his story is told in detail in the book referred to above and also in the earlier book produced by ‘Athletics Weekly’ shown here.

JT2

John as a young man was very energetic and took up boxing as an outlet for the energy and maybe anger at the hand he had been dealt as a child.   It was a more glamorous sport than football with long reports on Randolph Turpin v Sugar Ray Robinson and the money available.   He joined a local club and did some training, including roadwork, and was talked into a couple of bouts against friends in the same club and a couple of guys from other clubs.   Altogether he gained £17 in expenses before he decided he would rather be a runner – he enjoyed the road work and had a natural talent.   That meant joining a club so he applied to join Salford Harriers, his local club.   He filled in the application and in the space asking if he had ever earned money for any sporting activity, he swithered for a long time before telling the truth.   His form came back with his 5/- membership form – he couldn’t join.    The area AAA’s Committee said that since he had been a boxer who had earned money he would have to be cleared by his local Amateur Boxing Association Committee.   They had a reciprocal arrangement with them and could not accept him as an amateur unless the ABA gave him clearance.    This was not forthcoming.   he was desperately keen to run so he turned up at a couple of races in his vest and shorts but covered with a long overcoat and a cap pulled down over his eyes.   When the race started he removed the ‘disguise’ and joined in.   Officials tried to pull him out of the race without success and he led for most of it.   The Express newspaper gave him the title of ‘The Ghost Runner’ because he ran without a number, never appeared in the results and was totally ignored by the establishment.    He got on well with the other runners, spectators liked to see him in action and soon promoters realised that an appearance by the ghost added to the attraction of their race.   As the momentum built up he was invited to appear on David Coleman’s Sportsnight  programme.   The interview was sympathetic and at the end he was wished good luck by Coleman.    He was contacted by the AAA’s who asked for the money to be repaid!    He was not an amateur by their lights but he couldn’t accept money for a TV interview.   The sum involved was £1:18:0 [£1:90].  The Gordian Knot of acceptance as an amateur was cut by the recognition, rather late in the day, that since he had never ever actually been a paid up member of the ABA, he didn’t need their clearance!    After three years of being a ghost, he was accepted into the amateur fold.   [While he was banned and after the big movement for his clearance had really gained momentum, he had been invited to a race and instead of a number he wore a card reading ‘GHOST’]     The new book is very good, the AW one is out of print but he was a remarkable man and I can’t recommend his story too highly for anyone wanting to know about the divide and more importantly about this man and his part in helping bring down the wall.

Graham MacIndoe sent these two links to articles about Tarrant:

http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/general/john-tarrant-sad-shadow-of-the-ghost-runner-still-stalks-the-track-2305959.html

and

http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Ghost-Runner-Bill-Jones/978145966065

So there you have it!!!   Hugh Barrow and John Tarrant both had to give back the money paid for a TV interview.     The situation did provide some lighter moments – not always for officialdom, however.

For instance there was the time when AAA’s supremo Jack Crump went to Ireland in the immediate post-war period to investigate rumours of illegal payments being made to athletes.   Following his investigation, he was about to board a flight back to London when somebody rushed forward and thrust a box of eggs into his hand and Press photographer snapped it for the record.    The significance?   Eggs were still rationed in Britain!    No more was heard of that investigation!

The Continental take on the ‘shamateur’ business was quite straightforward.   When athletes travelled to their big races, the were awarded prizes such as refrigerators, washing machines, television sets, etc  on the Saturday after the race; these ‘trophies’ were then sold at a special sale on the Sunday and the proceeds given to the owner (ie the runner who had won them!    The picture below is of Lachie Stewart with his prize from the race at Elgoibar in Spain before he sold it on.

“On 2nd November 1893 the General Committee of the SAAA appointed a sub-Committee ‘to enquire into various alleged abuses in amateur athletics’.   The sub-Committee comprised: Donald C Brown (West of Scotland Harriers) – vice president of the Association;   Alex MacNab (Clydesdale Harriers); Farquhar Matheson (Abercorn FC); James Caw (Edinburgh Harriers) and David S Duncan (Royal High School FC) who acted as secretary.   In the following two months the Committee held seven meetings – four in Glasgow and three in Edinburgh – at all of which various representatives of Sports-holding clubs, Association officials and prominent competitors were interviewed.   In all, thirty one witnesses appeared before the Committee, three of whom were recalled, while signed statements were received from another three who were were unable to attend personally.   All the evidence accumulated from these investigations was distilled into findings submitted to the General Committee on 15th January, 1894.   These findings revealed a none-too-healthy state of affairs: 

(1) The payment of competitors expenses, including Hotel expenses, was general throughout Scotland, but only in the case of prominent athletes from a distance.   This applied particularly to prominent English athletes who appeared at meetings in Glasgow and Edinburgh but applied also to Scots athletes who competed at Blackburn and Sunderland at various times between 1889 and 1893l

(2)   It was proved that payments of money had been made in particular to

          AR Downer, the Scottish Champion sprinter, who not only had received £3 for ‘expenses’ in a meeting, but also had overtured for payments to several clubs.   (Downer denied this but apparently his evidence was judged to be of a ‘very untruthful and unsatisfactory character’!)

          S Duffus (Arbroath), an outstanding Scottish distance runner, who admitted to receiving £2 in the name of expenses from a club;    and

          TE Messenger (Salford), an Englisg sprinter who received £5 in the name of expenses from a club.

(3)   It was found that a club had paid a round sum to an individual resident in England on account of ‘travelling expenses’  for a party of English athletes whose hotel expenses were also defrayed;

(4)   In the west of Scotland payment of entry fees was not enforced by clubs as it ought to have been.   This was mainly found to be the case with cycling entrants;

(5)   Betting was prevalent in Edinburgh and Paisley, and was n the increase in Glasgow;

(6)   ‘Roping’ was spreading and this, together with the betting was found to be demoralising amateur sport.

All the witnesses were given the assurance that no action would be taken against clubs or individuals for any infringements which had come to light.   That immunity protected the athletes cited.   Downer and Messenger later turned professional and the former, in his ‘Running Recollections’ (which appeared after he had turned pro) lifted the lid on the hypocrisy abroad in his amateur days.    Thus in the course of a decade of its life, the Association had passed from a state of idealism to one which revealed the stark materialism which had permeated amateur sport.   But still more testing times were ahead.!”

More of this saga to come with details of the men who were suspended, banned and otherwise punished.

10K – OK

10K )K 1

The start of the first race: 47: Liz Steele, 30: Janet McColl; 21: Julia Harvey

Like the ‘Coatbridge 5′,   Glasgow’s ’10K – OK’ was only held for a few years – from 1984 through to 1990 – but as a women only race through the centre of a major city with a large field ranging in ability from the very best in the country to those with less lofty ambitions, it was significant in the history and development of women’s road running in Scotland.   It started as part of the fund raising for the Prince & Princess of Wales Hospice in Glasgow and with a great deal of publicity.    The centre of Glasgow was pretty well closed down for the duration of the race (easily seen in the two pictures of the start) great crowds turned out to spectate.   In the first race Miss Glasgow started but it’s not clear whether or not she finished – she can be seen in the picture above  wearing her sash – with Mya Baker (who finished third)  just behind Miss Glasgow.

With a fair bit of sponsorship right from the start it built up over the years to become one of the best sponsored in the country.   It had a winning combination of good organisation and good cause that proved a success in anybody’s terms.   It was also an idea whose time had come: Mass participation events had been mainly marathons up till then and the new half marathon distance was now quite familiar.   10K at this point was new, easily manageable by anyone so long as they had enough time and were either persuaded or swept into it.   There was a clear end point too – helping fund the Hospice.

Not only was it a good cause that was attractive but the organisation was of the best: after the first race, the SWAAA and SWCCU became involved and their experience was more than useful but the master organiser of big races, Strathclyde University staff member Alex Johnston from Lenzie was in charge.   He had organised many such races and wrote detailed articles on how to go about it, including getting the finish arrangements right.   With hundreds of runners approaching the finish, all expecting times, brooches, Mars bars, water and whatever else was being given out  without delay it was imperative that a good team of stewards was in position when the first runner arrived.   Alex and his team ensured that this was the case.

The race programme and pre-race instructions to athletes were really detailed with the needs of the participants the main concern.   There was a page of do’s and don’ts.

Every year the programme contained a message from Dr Anne Gilmore, Founder and Medical Director of the Hospice in Glasgow as well as one of the main moving spirits behind the race in the beginning.   Her message for 1988 read as follows:

 “The first hint of summer sunshine brings with it the final busy preparations for the annual 10K – OK Race and the hope that this year’s race will, as always, bring together women of all ages and from all walks of life.   Those who have trained for months and those who have made a last minute effort will join in the fun and fund raising – thus participating in a positively healthy event and at the same time help a most worthy cause.   Since last year’s race, the work of the Prince & Princess of Wales Hospice has continued with almost three hundred patients cared for.   The Day Hospice is fairly established as a centre of excellence for the terminally ill and has become fondly known as “the club” to many patients and their families.

Attendances at the pain-relief clinic each Wednesday morning have numbered two hundred and seventy eight – with patients benefiting from a combination of modern medicine and a relaxed and pleasant environment.   Our home-care team, extended now to three nurses and two GP’s, have made nearly three thousand home visits.   Caring for patients and their families at home is a fundamental part of the Hospice philosophy and it is always gratifying to see a family manage, with help, what might be otherwise an unmanageable situation.   Expert nursing, willing volunteers, a friendly face, a night sitter – all combine to keep patients comfortable at home.  

Recently builders arrived on site at Carlton Place and work began on an extension to the Hospice which will provide much-needed in-patient accommodation.   We have had a wonderful boost of a visit to our Garden Festival Tapestry Event by their Royal Highnesses The Prince and Princess of Wales – when the royal couple again showed their interested support of Glasgow’s Hospice.   We look forward to receiving our first residential patients early in 1989 and meanwhile I take this opportunity to than all participants in the 1988 10O – OK for giving us their support for this year’s event and wish good luck to all who run for other charities.  

Good Luck and Good Running,

Anne JJ Gilmore.

The event was always billed as a ‘race’, the awards were attractive and the quality of the runners at the head of the field was undeniably high and was rendered even better by the inclusion, first of all, of the SWRRA Championships, and then higher still by the introduction of an international event.    But there always great care taken to encourage as many women as possible, whatever their level of fitness, to get moving, to take part, to raise their fitness level and raise money for a good cause.    Other races have done so too but the 10K – OK was one of the very first and, I firmly believe, did so better than almost any other before or since.     The route was basically a single loop of the city centre starting and finishing at Charing Cross.   Let’s look at it and then at the actual races.

THE ROUTE

10K OK 3

The first 10K-OK was held on 26th August, 1984 and, as reported above, was run by Strathclyde Regional Council and the Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice.   The route started in Elmbank Street and went south to St Vincent Street, east to Renfield Street then to Glasgow Bridge via Union Street and Jamaica Street.   Over the bridge the course went along Carlton Place to South Portland Street, west on Oxford Street and on to Victoria Bridge via Norfolk Street and Gorbals Street.   Back on the North of the river, the course went west along the River Walkway, under the Suspension Bridge and Glasgow Bridge then west along the Broomielaw, Anderston Quay, Lancefield Quay. north on Finnieston Street and then west along Argyle Street and Dumbarton Road.   North on Church Street, Byres Road, east along University Avenue, south on Kelvin Way and east along Sauchiehall Street.   The run home then went south on North Street (!), east along Bath Street, south on Newton Street, east along Elmbank Crescent and south into India Street for the finish.   No part of the city was untouched by the route which the organisers divided into the Hospice Loop. Clydeside and the University Loop.

This first year had 572 finishers and of these 294 finished in under one hour.   The first 100 were given an engraved pendant on a chain and this continued for the next three years.   Sandra Branney who went on to become a Scottish Internationalist runner on road, track and over the country says that it was her first ever race and because of that it still means a lot to her – she still has all the pendant from her races.   There are interesting names all the way through the field indicating the range of interest generated.   For the record the first twenty in the first race were as follows.

Place Name Time
1 Liz Steele 37:32
2 Jane Walker 37:57
3 Mya S Baker 39:22
4 Janet McColl 40:25
5 Rosalind Kay 42:19
6 Fiona Murray 42:23
7 Carol Ann Hogg 42:37
8 Helen MacPherson 43:23
9 Morag K Thow 43:38
10 Anne Tait 43:47
11 Carolyn Miller 44:06
12 Kate Chapman 44:11
13 Gail Noble 44:17
14 Mairead Christie 44:21
15 Sally Johnston 44:24
16 Helen Oliver 44:32
17 Sandra Branney 44:33
18 Elspeth R Turner 44:34
19 Nicole Garmery 44:39
20 Aileen Lusk 45:21

 Liz Steele was already an established runner, well-respected for her ability, Jane Walker on the other hand was almost a total newcomer, a PE teacher from Strathkelvin she too would become an international runner.   Janet McColl too had been running since she was a girl and her name appears throughout cross-country championship lists in almost every age group.   Morag Thow was also well known and went on to become one of the country’s best physiotherapists.     Sandra we have spoken of already and Elspeth Turner from Bearsden would go on to win championships and medals as well as international vests as a Senior woman and in University competition with Strathclyde University.   Aileen Lusk was a veteran international runner who by now was running and coaching at Strathkelvin Harriers in Bishopbriggs.   Not far below them was the name of Nanette Mutrie who was a lecturer and academic in sports psychology.

The success of this race meant that it was certain to go ahead the following year and the field was even bigger and came from all over Scotland.   The Scottish Women’s Cross Country Union had become involved after the first year    Sandra Branney comments on the actual race: “It was a really hot day and the race started slowly.   I was at the stage where I was beginning to improve  and for some reason found myself at the head of the lead pack.   I was terrified – running this big race with women behind me that I’d read about in the newspapers.   Just past Central Station, I think Liz Lynch decided she had had enough and zoomed off over the horizon.   It completely broke up the pack and I could relax and run my own race.”

10K OK 5

The improved quality of the race was indicated by the times of the athletes and placings compared with the first in the series.   Janet McColl, for instance improved her time by two minutes to 38:33 but actually dropped five places to ninth, Jane Walker improved the time marginally but fell back from second to fifth and there are many similar examples.   However there were a number of runners who achieved vast improvements on their first outing – we only need to look at Sandra Brannery (17th in 44:33 to 4th in 37:30 and Elspeth Turner (18th in 44:34 to 3rd in 36:03) to see extreme examples of that.   The runners also came from much further afield – the first two were from Dundee and Aberdeen respectively but there were runners from all over the country: from Nith Valley and St Andrews as well as from Victoria Park and Shettleston.   It was the biggest women only race in Britain.   The first twenty this year are in the table below.

Place Name Time
1 Liz Lynch 33:57
2 Lynda Bain 34:44
3 Elspeth Turner 36:03
4 Sandra Branney 37:30
5 Susan Crawford 37:37
6 Jane Walker 37:45
7 Celia Thomson 37:52
8 Anne Bankowska 38:33
9 Janet McColl 38:33
10 Elaine Chellen 38:35
11 Valerie Dempsey 38:49
12 Anne Ridley 39:48
13 Ulrike Simpson 39:48
14 Liz Steele 40:12
15 Janine Robertson 40:35
16 Carol-Anne Bartley 40:32
17 Carolyn Brown 41:13
18 Michelle McDonald 41:38
19 Isabel Fraser 41:57
20 Jean Sharp 42:13

 Not unnaturally the race was starting to attract attention from the press and in an article in the ‘Glasgow Herald’ Alan Campbell’s headline was ‘Girl studying in the US wins road race’.   The second paragraph read “There were more than 1500 entrants for the race, of whom 1200 materialised on the starting line in the city centre yesterday morning.   The figure more than doubled last year’s inaugural race proving that running has taken off as a sport among Scottish women.”   It certainly had

There were two pages devoted to the 1986 event in the “Scotland’s Runner” magazine of July 1986 and Lynda Bain (at the time Scotland’s fastest woman marathon runner) who had been second in 1986 spoke of it in her first column for the magazine.   She said“More and more ladies are taking up running.   A thousand women took to the streets of Glasgow to run the 10K OK last June.   We had a super day – a special day because we were all running together.   It didn’t matter how long you took or what age you were.   Husbands, children, friends and neighbours all turned out to give us a cheer.   Maybe you were one of those women who watched last year.   Didn’t you feel like joining in with all those enthusiastic and smiling runners?   It was a great success again this year, so come on!”   Alison Turnbull, a leading writer on women’s running had this to say in Stewart McIntosh’s article, “The first wave of women runners were mainly ‘marathon widows’ – the wives or girlfriends of male runners who decided that if they couldn’t beat them, then they might as well get out there and join them.   But newer events like the 10K-OK and the Women’s Own series of women only 10K races have tapped a new market, they have found a whole new group of runners who are joining in the sport for very positive reasons.  They are running because they associate with health and beauty, losing weight and making friends.”   And McIntosh goes on to say that she believes that restricting certain events to women-only provides a major boost to female participation in the sport.”   

The race in 1986 had 1700 runners and not only was that total the highest yet, but the quality at the front end was also superb: Liz Lynch won for the second time in 33:03, Lorna Irving was second in 34:37 and Sandra Branney progressed to third with a time of 34:59.  Then in fourth there was Audrey Sym in 36:02, Sharon Sinclair (36:09) and Gail Macdonald in 36:50.    In 1986 it also became the official Scottish Women’s Championship and continued as such for the next few years.   The following year the race was run on Sunday, 7th June in 1987, the race was won by Sandra Branney at the fourth time of asking in 33:48 – eleven minutes faster than her first ever race in 1984!    An International was now incorporated into the race and she was followed home by Sally Lynch (Wales) in 34:19, Christine Price (Scotland) in 34:25, Bronwen Cardy (Wales) 34:28, Moira O’ Neill (Northern Ireland) in 35:33 and Sharon Sinclair (Scotland) in 35:36.  This time Sandra was not racing for City of Glashow but for her country and she led the team to victory.     Seventeenth to first, Scottish 10K Road Champion and winner of the international race in just four races.   Not bad at all and no wonder Sandra looks back on the race fondly!

In 1988 Glasgow hosted the third of the five British Garden Festivals, and the only one to be held in Scotland.   It ran from 26th April to 26th September and was blessed with good weather for virtually the entire duration.   It was held on the south side of the river and the race route was entirely on the north side but the organisers did look at a plan for actually starting the race in the Festival and crossing Bell’s Bridge to join the traditional loop and finish as usual at Charing Cross.   It didn’t come to pass but it was a nice idea.

Alison Jenkins (Edinburgh AC) won the race in 1988 in a slower time than usual of 34:40.    She was followed by S Leonard (England)  in 34:48; S Sinclair (Irvine/Scotland) in 35:17; S Bentley (England) 35:21; A Sym (Glasgow/Scotland) in 35:39; C Haskins (England) 35:36; T Duffy (Ireland) 35:50 and M Smith (Wales was eighth in 36:23.   Scotland won the team race, and Glasgow AC won the club event.

If Sandra Branney liked 1987, she must have loved 1989 when she not only won the race, but was first veteran, also won the Scottish 10K Road Championships and was first in the International!   One race, four firsts!   The race result:   1.   S Branney (Glasgow/Scotland)  34:03;   2.   M O’Neill (N Ireland)  34:24;   3.   K Pritchard (Wales) 34:33;     4.   S Lynch (Wales)  35:07;   5.   L Bain (Scotland)   35:27;   6.   B Cardy-Wise (Wales)   35:47;   7.   N Haines (Wales)   36:24;   8.   J Swanson   37:12.    Teams:   1,   Wales;   2.   Scotland;   3.   N Ireland.

What proved to be the last ace in the series was on Sunday, 17th June 1990 and it was reported in the Glasgow Herald as follows:

“Janet Swanson (Monkland Shettleston Ladies AC) won the Prince and Princess of Wales 10,000m road race in Glasgow yesterday in a time of 35:13.   Marie Duthie (Fraserburgh AC) was runner-up and Scottish International Violet Blair (EWM) was third.   Carol-Ann Bartley (Glasgow AC) was the first West runner to finish in fourth place.   Renee Murray (Giffnock North AC) was the leading veteran with Caroline Fairweather (Monkland Shettleston) the first intermediate finisher.   Glasgow AC won the open team contest with Giffnock North winning the veterans’ team prize.”     No times were given other than the winner’s

10K OK 6

The pendants were only given to the first 100 finishers and were a different shape each year

It is difficult to over-estimate the effect that the race had on the sport, the women of Scotland, and more particularly Glasgow, and subsequent events whether women only or not.  The current Glasgow Women’s 10K is a very good race but it started from a position where the 10K was a more recognised and better known distance, and when many women had already had run the distance several times before.    In addition the invitations to the top women in the world  alters the race as it was run in the 1980’s.    The race then started from scratch and a lot of pioneering work was done making the race an instant success with many really good athletes at the front, a solid mass of club runners behind them – and then even more women behind them who were basically first- or second-time runners.    Given the different starting points it is arguable that the 10K – OK was a bigger success than its successor.

 

Back to The Classics

North Classics

AJW

Alastair Wood

North District races were a mystery to me, when I started at Aberdeen University in 1966, but Aberdeen AAC did travel to them frequently, possibly because the club’s irascible guru, Alastair Wood, had been born in Elgin.

In late September 1967 I vaguely remember participating in the Nairn to Inverness Road Relay. This attracted four man teams, with each individual racing a stage of four miles along the fairly busy main road, past stretches of lonesome farmland, to the Highland capital. Unfamiliar runners from Elgin AC, Inverness Harriers and Forres Harriers tried and failed to outpace Aberdonians. What happened was that Aberdeen AAC had little difficulty in establishing a good lead, probably due to Alastair Wood and Steve Taylor, but they had one or two younger, slower runners. My team, Aberdeen University, were second but the leader was out of sight when I took over for the last leg. The weather had steadily worsened, with a strong headwind and drenching downpour, but I just bashed on dourly. To my amazement, just into Inverness, I noticed the inexperienced Aberdeen AAC runner (a youthful 880 yard specialist) sheltering in a shop doorway. Jolly good, I thought, unsympathetically and shortly afterwards crossed the finish line to obtain a surprise team victory. Then it was time for free tea and scones in a restaurant.

On 21st September 1968, I finished a less-than-meritorious second on the first stage of the Nairn to Inverness. Unfortunately the first man home was Alastair Wood, and I endured the experience of being outclassed totally. The three-mile straight to the handover point took an eternity as Alastair disappeared inexorably from view. He finished a humiliating 74 seconds ahead! AU finished third team to Aberdeen and Forres.

By 1969, however, Aberdeen University had a pretty good team – we went on to finish ninth in the 1970 E to G, and we were stronger in four-man events. Running into a strong headwind, I was only four seconds down on Joe Clare (AAAC) but ‘miles’ in front of the third team. Charlie Macaulay established a good lead for us; Don Ritchie only lost a minute to Woodie; and Robin Orr held on to secure a rare victory over the city club.

On 17th September 1970 we retained our title. ‘Gaudie’, the AU newspaper, reports: “Varsity defeated Aberdeen AAC, Forres Harriers, Lochaber AC and Inverness Harriers teams. Colin Youngson, Charlie Macaulay, Donald Mackintosh and Donald Ritchie ran well in unhelpful conditions to record a time of 1 hour 20 minutes and 30 seconds, which is only 17 seconds outside the record.” This time, Ally Wood was only twelve seconds in front of me after the first stage; Charlie shot into the lead; and the two Donalds moved well clear of the opposition. The Nairn to Inverness Relay was great fun and good training for more challenging team events in the Central Belt.

On Saturday 12th July 1969, I took part in my very first marathon, having reached the ‘legal’ entry age of 21. The event was the Inverness to Forres Marathon part of the well-organised Forres Highland Games, which continues to flourish today. I have to laugh at my training schedule: the university track season, endless repetition sessions, a 3.58.2 paarlauf mile, PBs for one mile, three miles and 5000 metres, plus a few longer hungover yet hard Sunday runs from Woodie’s house (usually failing to hang on to the great man) and a couple of ten mile races. The final regime was an exhausting eight days totalling 100 miles in seven runs (to prove I could handle the distance!), a 6 mile grass track race the following Monday, a six mile jog on Wednesday, an inexplicable short rep session on Friday and off to the marathon on Saturday.

The start was on top of a short but steep hill on the edge of Inverness, followed by the long straight main route to Forres, running on the right hand side of the road. The only advice was that, when you passed under the railway bridge at Nairn, there were ten miles to go to the finish in the Games arena in Grant Park, Forres. A newspaper clipping shows Ally Wood striding off rapidly, followed only by Don Ritchie. Since it was a hot day, they were both sporting jaunty knotted white hankies, scout neckerchief fashion. There were only 14 intrepid starters. My diary notes: “Lots of food and drink before. Watched Wood shoot off while I ran steadily with the second pack. After 10 miles, I broke away. Passed several, feeling good, then worse. However saw the foolhardy DR ‘dying’ ahead, so passed him at 18 (he dropped out at 23). Did the rest on my own – hard but not competitive. Sponges at every stop and two small drinks of water. Okay state, considering, at the end. Sore thighs and feet but no blisters. Might have caught Hughie Mitchell if I had pushed it.” 1st AJW (2.27.44), 2nd Hugh Mitchell (Shettleston) 2.38, 3rd Colin Youngson 2.41.13. Third prize was a pedestal ashtray – just what an improving young runner might have desired, not. After a holiday, the next race I contested was another ‘you have to be 21 at least’ event – the gruelling Ben Nevis race – in those days, we used to run everything!

Alastair Wood had made major headlines back in 1966 when he ran a fantastic British and European Record marathon (2.13.45) in this event. He had peaked brilliantly by the unusual method of running as many as 60 x 220 yard strides! On the 9th of July he “was full of energy, his knees coming up of their own accord!” There may possibly have been a following breeze, but there is no doubt that he was capable of such a time, which was later ratified. It was a day on which Alastair felt he could “run forever” and local rumour has it that he claimed to be “the fastest white man in the world” (behind an African( Abebe Bikila), a Japanese (Morio Shigematsu) and a Mongolian Russian)!

Alastair Wood won the Inverness to Forres Marathon again in 1967, so 1969 was his third victory. In 1970, Alastair achieved a fourth victory and apparently broke his own course record, by winning in 2.13.44, no less than 22 minutes in front of the second-placed Duncan Davidson of Forres Harriers. However this time the distance was a little short, due to a change of start place.

On Saturday 6th July 1974, just two weeks after finishing third in the Scottish marathon championship, representing ESH, I turned up for what turned out to be the final Inverness to Forres. I have a copy of the race instructions as well as the precise locations of the ‘refreshment stalls’. The race started now “on Longman Road at 1 p.m. sharp, directly opposite Lamp Standard on left of entrance to Brown Wooden Building, midway between Auto Sales and Ferries Garage. Runners must keep on the left side of roadway.” One official was instructed to “run and open the Canvas Gate near to the Cricket Pavilion so that runners are not hindered in getting into the Park”. However my pot-hunting attempt was doomed. At the start I met the redoubtable Sandy Keith, a training partner and major rival from Edinburgh AC. At the Scottish marathon, he had led for some time then ‘blown up’ a little to finish fourth, four minutes behind me. However his powers of recovery were far greater. I threw in several fartlek bursts during the first ten miles of the Forres race, failed to shake Sandy, and then ‘gave up’ and watched him stride away out of sight. He won in 2.26, whereas I plodded in second in 2.33.44. I have the finisher’s certificate, signed by Forres Harriers official Sandy Brander, who did a lot for North Athletics, along with Tom Mackenzie, a cheerful, charismatic Inverness stalwart.

A year later, I finally obtained a coveted ‘North of Scotland Milk Marketing Board’ plaque, for winning the Forres Highland Games Road Race, but the distance had been reduced to a hilly ten miles. In 1983 I won the event again, over a similar course measuring 11 miles plus.

On Saturday the first of October 1970, just a fortnight after winning the Nairn to Inverness Relay, AU were first team in the Alves to Forres Road Race, organised by Forres Harriers, over 6 and a quarter miles. Alastair Wood was first in 30.17, with me second (31.06) and Don Ritchie third (31.10). Our team was completed by Charlie Macaulay (5th) and Donald Macintosh (7th). We defeated teams from Forres, Aberdeen and Lochaber. Alves (and forty years later I learned that the ‘l’ is silent) is a hamlet situated at the bottom of a hill. There was a stiff headwind. Consequently the wily Wood left the start like a sprinter, streaked up the tough little rise over the railway bridge, and made sure that no one was capable of sheltering behind him. The route follows the main road north, past forest and farmland, lightly undulating. To my lasting shame, I ‘sat’ behind my team-mate Don Ritchie the whole way. We were very close rivals at the time: he was stronger but I was slightly faster on a firm surface. Lacking the stamina and confidence to share the pace, I simply waited until I could see the finish line and surged away before turning round and apologising to my friend, who was philosophical about the sneaky tactics.

On checking a training diary, I see to my surprise that I ran the Alves to Forres again on Sunday the 4th of October 1987. Another headwind. The winner was Ross Arbuckle of Keith (30.07) from Chris Armstrong and Bruce Chinnick of Forres Harriers. I was fourth in 30.52, a decent run for someone three weeks short of his 40th birthday.

As Charlie Bannerman has reported, the A to F inevitably had to be taken off the main road and its next variation was a six mile race from the village of Dallas to the town of Forres. On Sunday 1st October 1989 I finished 1st Vet and second overall (32.12), well behind Graham Laing (30.43). There was a dreadful downhill start and then it was undulating into a headwind. Next version featured a course involving an out and back to Grant Park, Forres plus a testing hilly loop to the left of Rafford village. On Sunday 7th October 1990 I found myself duelling with my young friend Ian Williamson (Shetland and Aberdeen AAC). Even a final ‘sprint’ failed to separate us and we finished first equal. Unfortunately that effort caused me to rip a muscle in my backside, which took two months to heal properly – so I never did that race again! However in 2010 I did manage 1st M60 in the nearby Dyke 10k, which is, according to Mr Bannerman, the current incarnation of the Alves to Forres. I look forward to plodding round the Forres Highland Games 10k as well, to ensure that I have taken part in all possible variations of the old-style A to F (and the shortened Inverness to Forres marathon).

Back in the 1960s and 1970s, with the Alves to Forres, the Inverness to Forres marathon and the Nairn to Inverness Relay plus the Inverness to Drumnadrochit Road Race, it was possible to have raced on almost 50 continuous miles of main road! My first attempt at the latter was on the 29th of August 1970. The event was part of the Glenurquhart Highland Gathering and the distance was listed as 15 and a half miles. The race started in a side street near the river, and then continued out of the city, over the Caledonian Canal and through thick woods to the beginning of Loch Ness. After that it was fairly hilly and ‘Nessie-spotting’ was a popular distraction. Eventually the course swooped down past the Drumnadrochit Hotel, turned left all the way through the village, and then right and round the Games grass track to the finish. Only eleven runners turned up that day, and no ‘stars’, so I won in the modest time of 1.27.04 from Hamish Scott of Forres (and later Perth) and my AU mates Charlie Macaulay and Don Ritchie. The Mackay Challenge Cup was presented to the pleased but surprised victor.

Once I returned to live near Aberdeen in 1981, I ran the race three times in succession. On Saturday 29th August 1981 I ended up a well-beaten fourth in 1.19.43, suffering a warm day when the constant undulations felt tough. The winner was that talented young maverick Willie Sheridan (Victoria Park 1.17.50), from marathon star Fraser Clyne (Aberdeen AAC 1.17.58) and gritty Graham Milne (AAAC 1.18.16). One year later, on a cold, blustery day into a headwind, I found another youthful star too much for me: Graham Laing (AAAC) won in 1.17.48, with me struggling for pace in second (1.19.37) in front of Ian Moncur (Forres) and George Reynolds and Peter Wilson of AAAC.

On Saturday 27th August 1983, I won the race again, in rather unusual circumstances. Anglo-Scot Dave Clark (arguably Scotland’s finest veteran marathon runner), who had been educated at Aberdeen University, was enjoying a holiday up north. At seven miles the two of us drew away from Ian Moncur and Paul Kenney (Inverness). I tried very hard to ‘dump’ my old acquaintance after that by surging on the uphills, but he kept up with disconcerting ease. Eventually, my diary notes: “I shot away downhill into Drumnadrochit, like a scared rabbit to the finish, in 1.18.35, less than a minute off the record.” I was somewhat chagrined to learn afterwards that Dave, who had rolled in fourteen seconds behind, had been sure that we were going to run in together! 85 athletes took part that day. In the last years of the Inverness to Drumnadrochit, Graham Laing, who had moved to Inverness, won nearly every one. It was a good, scenic race with a considerable tradition and excellent training for Autumn city marathons like Aberdeen or Glasgow.

Edinburgh University 10

EU10 85

Start of Edinburgh 10, 1985

I only ever raced in this race once – a Clydesdale Harriers team went through and we actually won with Allan Faulds, Ian Donald and Doug Gemmell being the counting runners.   It was a good, hard two lap trail with an enormous climb to be done soon after the start of the lap and there was a long downhill run beside the golf course before turning into the finish at King’s Buildings.   Enjoyable race over a king of fiercely undulating trail but I didn’t go back!    Colin Youngson has written the account below.

The Edinburgh University Ten Miles Open race took place in mid-February or early March and I first ran the March 1st 1971 version. The Aberdeen University newspaper ‘Gaudie’ reports only that Don Ritchie was 5th in 50 minutes 8 seconds and that I managed 8th and a PB for the distance of 51.04. However I won the handicap event with Don third. Respectively we won a coffee set and an umbrella; plus our third team place won us sets of bathroom scales! Nevertheless, this race was a serious challenge. The start was at King’s Buildings, and then you swooped downhill and over a few undulations past The Hermitage. A left turn transformed things, as you struggled up a series of very steep slopes, before emerging on the road which skimmed past the Braid Hills golf course. Then it was a screaming descent and nasty little climb before passing the start again. Nowadays the race continues as the EU Five Miles but in the past real men had to face two laps of this exhausting trail.

On Saturday 3rd March 1973 Andy McKean won in 50.21. After a race-long contest with Martin Craven I just managed to escape before the finish. Our times were 50.43 and 50.49. My training diary comments: “Almost sick at the end. Very hard. Andy mucking about in front. At least beat five who got me in the National including Jim Dingwall.”

It would appear that I also finished second in the 1976 version but now I can only guess that it was Doug Gunstone who was well in front, probably in 49 minutes or so. Certainly I never beat 50 minutes in this race.

1979’s race on Saturday 3rd March was a bad one for me – only 7th in 52.34. Aberdeen’s Graham Laing won in 50.43, from Doug Gunstone, Don Macgregor, Dave Clark, Fraser Clyne and Martin Craven. ESH finished second team, and each of us won sixteen Mars bars!

The reason why prizes had become more acceptable to typical carbo-loving beer-drinking runners was that the eccentric Robin ‘YP’ Thomas (future founder of that zany but successful club Hunter’s Bog Trotters) had taken over the race organisation, although the course remained as formidable. (YP’s nickname was coined by Don Macgregor when he could not remember the name of the bold 18 year-old who turned up for long Sunday runs, so he referred to him as ‘Young Penicuik’, since Robin’s family home was near there.)

The programme (costing 5 new pence) for the 1980 race proclaimed that “the Edinburgh University Hare and Hounds 10-mile road race (8.87 Scots miles, since a Scots mile is approximately a furlong longer than an English mile) has grown to become the SCCU’s biggest and most prestigious 10-mile road race. It now attracts Olympic and Commonwealth Games stars, British Internationalists, Scottish Internationalists, English Internationalists, SUSF and BUSF representatives and droves of runners of lesser ability.” (On reflection, if Don Macgregor and Fergus Murray had turned up, along with a good runner from Newcastle and a jogger or two, all of the above categories would be covered.)

The course is covered in pedantic detail. “The race starts on K.B. Campus (to the west of the Chemistry Building), heads westward through Blackford, up Midmar Avenue and Midmar Drive and along Hermitage Drive. There follows a steep climb up Braid Road, before the course heads eastward along Braid Hills Drive. Thereafter it’s down Alnwickhill Road and Liberton Brae, up Mayfield Road and onto West Mains Road. Then comes the bad news – there’s still another lap to go before the finish back on K.B. campus.” Then the programme goes on about Andy McKean being the most prominent past winner; about the unfortunate clash of fixtures with the Hyde Park Relay in London; and about the lack of cash which has meant that “as club funds are habitually less than zero, we have had to charge exorbitant entry fees (ten shillings – Ye Gods! What’s the world coming to?) and scrounge minor sponsorships in order to provide everyone with a meal and to offer our usual ‘utilitarian’ prizes.”

“Slugs (i.e. people who are not members of EUH&H are invited to take part. Top prizes will be awarded to the First Slug and to the First Team of Slugs. As indicated above, all members of the Hare and Hounds, not being slugs, do not qualify for these prizes (we also reserve the right to disqualify EU Athletic Club and Orienteering Club runners, so that genuine fat slugs can take part and win). So, stub out your Capstan Full Strength, drain your pint of Export, and look out a pair of training shoes. You could win our start prizes – a keg of Export and half an ounce. Spectators will also enjoy the pie-eating contest and a refreshment session after the race.”

On Saturday 1st March 1980 I fought hard but failed to beat Sandy Keith of EAC. He handled the downhills much better than I did and in the end was well clear (50.47) to my 51.05. I only just stayed in front of my ESH club-mate Alex Robertson (51.11). At least this let me retain my club championship, and with the assistance of Martin Craven we won the team prize. I received four cans of beer, a homebrew kit and a jockstrap!

Next year was a classic. On Saturday 14th February a really good field turned up – because Robin had made it known that there would be malt whisky prizes. Consequently luminaries like Nat Muir and Jim Brown made the trek eastwards! I possess a photo of myself leading both of them – but naturally not for long, although my diary notes with incredulity that I stayed in front of the great Nat for two whole miles. Muir set an impressive new record of 48.37 to win his choice alcoholic prize, with Jim Brown only eleven seconds down. Other fast times were set by Jim Dingwall (49.19) and EAC’s Yamada (49.24). I managed 50.32 to secure the ESH club title and a distant fifth place, in front of several good Scots and Northern English runners.

That would seem to have been my last attempt at this unusual yet testing race. However I remember that a year or two after that there was heavy snowfall and cunning Evan Cameron defeated Don Macgregor in this ten-mile “road” race, because he had the sense to wear spikes!

The EU 10 miles seems to have started in 1965, and there is a set of results from10th June 1967 when Jim Wight (EU) finished in 50.55, in front of Gordon Eadie (Cambuslang) 51.14 and Dave Logue (EU) 52.11. EU won the team race. The present course was adopted in 1970 and I am not sure what the 1965-69 course might have been. Below are the top two and winning teams from 1970 to 1981.

7/3/70 Gareth Bryan-Jones (ESH) 49.48

Andy McKean (EUH&H) 50.37

Team: Clydesdale H

6/3/71  Andy McKean (EUH&H) 49.06

Alastair Johnston (VPAAC) 49.11

Team: EAC

4/3/72  Andy McKean (EUH&H) 49.55

Martin Craven (ESH) 52.12

Team: EUH&H

3/3/73  Andy McKean (EUH&H) 50.21

Colin Youngson (VPAAC) 50.43

Team: EUH&H

2/3/74  Don Macgregor (ESH) 51.08

Nigel Bailey (ESH) 51.08

Team: ESH

1/3/75  Martin Craven (ESH) 49.56

Nigel Bailey (ESH) 50.44

Team: ESH

28/2/76 Doug Gunstone (EAC) 49.57

Colin Youngson (ESH) 50.19

Team: EAC

26/2/77 Andy McKean (EAC) 49.14

Jim Dingwall (Falkirk Victoria H) 49.58

`           Team: FVH

11/2/78 John McGarva (FVH) 55.42

Willie Day (FVH) 56.28

Team: FVH

3/3/79  Graham Laing (AAAC) 50.43

Doug Gunstone (EAC) 50.51

Team: Fife AC

1/3/80  Sandy Keith (EAC) 50.47

Colin Youngson (ESH) 51.05

Team: ESH

14/2/81 Nat Muir (Shettleston H) 48.37

Jim Brown (Clyde Valley AC) 48.48

Team: ESH

I would hope that you noted the quality of the athletes who took part in the race – and there was a significant depth to the fields as well.   As Colin said at the top of his article, it was not a fast tail but the runners all knew they would have a good hard race and learn a bit more about themselves – as well as having a good time. 

 

Tom Scott 10 Miles

TS 85 4

Colin Martin (234), Jack Adair, Tom Ulliott (224) and Brian Carty (228) in 1985

In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s road races typically had a couple of dozen runners, often a lot fewer – I once ran in a race with five runners and three prizes plus three handicap prizes – and sometimes may three dozen.   They were usually very good, competitive races.    And then along came the Tom Scott Road Race from Law to Motherwell.     You can read about the start of the event at the race website at www.tomscottroadraces.co.uk .   I ran in the first fourteen or fifteen and it is a race that encourages loyalty.   Note that two officials, Molly Wilmoth and Anna Poulton, received awards from the organisers for 50 years of officiating at the event.   The race was different to runners for several reasons – first the genesis  of the race with Tom being killed in a road accident on his way to a race, the fact that he was well known and liked in the running community and the fact that his club was keen to make it a big occasion.   Sure enough, the numbers in the event were always big, bigger than any road race of the time.     The old trail was better than the new one – that much is certain.   Point to points always have an aura about them.   However, Joe Small has collected the ‘Glasgow Herald’ reports of all the Tom Scott Races up to 1984 and they are reported below, starting with the first race in 1962.

 NEW ROAD RACE

  1.    1962.   H. Brown (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) the most consistent long distance runner in Scotland, won the first Tom Scott Memorial Trophy road race over ten miles on Saturday in the fine time of 50min. 33sec. beating a team-mate J. H. Linaker, by 180 yards, with R. McKay, another Motherwell runner, a similar distance farther behind, in third place.

As only the first three runners in each team counted Motherwell had minimum points and easily won the team contest.Alder (Morpeth), the Scottish cross-country champion, quickly went into the lead from the start at Law village and after a mile was a dozen yards ahead of Brown. After three miles however, Brown led the Anglo-Scot by almost 30 yards, with McKay, Linaker, G. Eadie (Cambuslang) and R. Coleman (Dundee Hawkhill) grouped together about 100 yards behind Alder.

Thereafter Alder, finding himself too tired to challenge Brown, lost interest and dropped right back. Brown was more than 120 yards ahead of McKay and Linaker after six miles had been covered and steadily increased his lead over Linaker, who soon broke away from his clubmate. Placings:-

  1. A .H.Brown (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 50min. 33sec., 2, J. H. Linaker (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 51min. 6sec., 3, R. McKay (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 51min. 41sec., 4, G. Eadie (Cambuslang) 51min. 55sec., 5, R. Coleman (Dundee Hawkhill) 52min. 18sec., 6, D. Simpson (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 52min. 50 sec., 7, M. Ryan (St. Modans) 53min. 4sec. 8, J. M. Kerr (Airdrie) 53min. 26sec.

1963

SCOTT MEMORIAL 

  1. H. Linaker (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.), runner-up last year, won the second annual Tom Scott Memorial 10-mile road race from Law school to Motherwell (A.E.I. Works) on Saturday.

Linaker’s 47min. 59sec. was 2min. 34sec. better than the winning time last year by A. H. Brown, another Motherwell Y.M.C.A runner, who on this occasion was beaten by more than 100 yards.

  1. H. Barrow (Victoria Park) was third and, as the first junior to finish, won the Turnbull Trophy.

With Linaker and Brown in the first two places and D. Simpson in seventh place, Motherwell won the team race with ten points. Victoria Park were second with 17 points.

Linaker and Brown went to the head of the field of 87 starters shortly after the start, and, shoulder to shoulder, they ran for nine miles. Thereafter Linaker found extra speed to shake off his rival and won by 18sec. The first three in the race beat last year’s time of 50min. 33sec.

Leading times:-

1, J. H. Linaker (Motherwell), 47min. 59sec.; 2, A. H. Brown (Motherwell), 48min. 17sec.; 3, W. H. Barrow (Victoria Park), 50min. 24sec.; 4, A. F. Murray (Dundee Hawkhill Harriers) 50min. 34sec.; 5, I. Harris (Beith Harriers) 50min. 34sec.; 6, R. C. Calderwood (Victoria Park) 50min. 40sec.

SCOTT ROAD RACE 

Wood’s Success 

  1. J. Wood (Aberdeen A.A.C.) won the third Tom Scott Memorial Trophy 10-mile road race from Law to Motherwell on Saturday when, after a fine duel with A. H. Brown (Motherwell), who was second, he finished 30 yards clear in 49min. 27sec. J. R. Johnstone (Monkland) was third.

Wood and Brown remained more or less together until the six mile checkpoint where the winner began to nose his way in front. Brown, however, was not easily shaken off and he cut Wood’s lead by producing a strong finish.

Details:-

1, A. .J. Wood (Aberdeen A.A.C.) 49min. 27sec.; 2, A. H. Brown (Motherwell) 49min. 33sec.; J. R. Johnstone (Monkland) 50min. 19sec.

ALDER WINS ROAD RACE

 J. Alder (Morpeth Harriers) justified expectations by winning the Tom Scott Memorial 10-mile road race on Saturday from Law to Motherwell in 47min. 34sec., 25 seconds’ improvement on the existing record set by J. H. Linaker (Motherwell) two years ago.

  1. H. Brown, winner of the first race four years ago, put in his best performance with a time of 47min. 40 sec., inside the previous record by 19 seconds, and third was J. L. Stewart (Vale of Leven), 30 yards behind Brown.

At the first three mile checkpoint Alder was running strongly fully 50 yards in front of Brown, Stewart, and I. McCafferty, who were together at that point, and the time of 13 min. 40 sec., 38 seconds faster than the previous best time at that stage, gave rise to the prospect of a record. Over the next three miles the gap opened out to more than 90 yards between Alder and Brown, and Stewart, McCafferty having meantime dropped back to fifth place, 50 seconds behind the leader.

Rally

During the next four miles, Brown rallied so well that he cut Alder’s lead to less than 40 yards at the finish – a great effort by one who came to prominence 16 years ago and has stayed there since that time. McCafferty disappointed by slipping back to fifteenth place.

Motherwell still proved masters of this race by taking the team honours for the fourth year in succession with a total of 21 points. Victoria Park and Shettleston finishing second and third. The handicap race was won by R. Cox (Glenpark Harriers) with R. Wedlock and A. P. Brown second and third. Results:-

1, J. Alder (Morpeth), 47-34; 2, A. H. Brown (Motherwell), 47.40; 3, J. L. Stewart (Vale of Leven), 48-45; 4, A. .P. Brown (Motherwell), 49-7; 5, A. J. Wood (Aberdeen A.A.C.), 49-14; 6, D. Wedlock (Motherwell), 50-19; 7, J. R. Johnstone (Monkland) 50-29; 8, H. J. Summerhill (Shettleston) 51-14; 9, J. Reilly (Victoria Park) 51-18; 10, R. Coleman (Hawkhill Harriers) 51-27

1966

A.H. BROWN WINS RACE TO MOTHERWELL

  1. H. Brown (Motherwell) now in his seventeenth year as a regular performer in distance events, is a dedicated athlete whose methods for the attainment of the retention on fitness might be copied. He outpaced a field of 87 starters in the fifth annual Tom Scott memorial 10 mile Road Race from Law to Motherwell, beating J. Alder (Morpeth H.), last years winner and the record holder by as much as 49secs.

Third was J. Brennan (Maryhill H.) who must be heartily congratulated on having as a junior overcome many experienced distance runners in this race.

At three miles Alder was in front – timed at 14min. 4sec., with A. H. Brown and Brennan just behind him. Fifty yards further away was A. J. Wood (Aberdeen A.C.), and behind him, just a few yards were L. McKenzie (Aberdeen A.C.) and A. Wight (Edinburgh University).

At the half distance checkpoint Alder and Brown were together, now steadily pulling away from the rest of the field, and at six miles Brown led Alder by a few yards with a time of 28min. 22sec.

Brown pulled on evident reserve of power from the eight mile point and broke away quickly from Alder, who now looked tired and totally unable to resist the inevitable. He failed by nearly 280 yards to hold Brown, who won the inaugural event in this series.

Details:-

Individual race – 1, A. H. Brown (Motherwell) 48min. 6sec.; 2, J. Alder (Morpeth) 48-55; 3, J. Brennan (Maryhill) 49-24; 4, A. J. Wood (Aberdeen A.C.) 49-46;, 5, G. B. Jones (Edinburgh University) 49-55; 6, A. Wight (Edinburgh University) 50-3; 7, J. Robertson (Hawkhill H.) 50-27; 8, F. Whitley (Wellpark H.) 50-36; 9, L. McKenzie (Aberdeen A.C.) 51-1; 10, R. Coleman (Hawkhill) 51-23; 11, C. Martin (Dumbarton) 51-37; 12, R. Fulton (Ailsa A.C.) 51-48

Team Race – 1, Hawkhill 31pts; 2, Edinburgh University 34pts; 3, Aberdeen A.C. 43pts.

1967

Stewart breaks course record by 53 seconds

 

By RON MARSHALL

It took J. L. Stewart less than half distance to make it clear to a field of 96 in the Tom Scott Memorial Road Race from Law to Motherwell on Saturday that he had gone there to win. And, going on to emphasise his superiority, he broke J. N. C. Alder’s two-year-old record for the course by 53 seconds.

For four of the 10 miles, it must be admitted; he had company in the shape of  I. McCafferty, who before the race said he would put in an honest challenge if he felt good. Clearly he did, for after three miles, run in a record 13 minutes 36 seconds, he and Stewart would have needed a set square to settle who had passed the mark first. Already accepting their minor roles behind were Andrew Brown, L. Young, Alex Brown and – out to surprise pundits it seemed – G. M. Brown (Edinburgh Southern).

From four to five miles Stewart gained a yard, two yards, and then it was five. This was the start of the rack for McCafferty, and try as he might the spirit of retaliation was crushed from him by the time Stewart passed the five mile sign with 20 yards of freedom behind him. To add to McCafferty’s troubles, he was misdirected in Motherwell, but by that time Stewart was about 150 yards ahead and the only effect of the error was to add maybe 20 seconds to McCafferty’s time.

Brave effort

For a long time Young looked as if he might push Andrew Brown into fourth place, but with here miles to go Brown shrugged of that danger and latterly was getting very close to McCafferty at times. Alex. Brown after a bright start, lost his place somewhere in the middle of the race, and only a brave effort towards the end brought him back into the first 10. G. M. Brown must have astonished many by filling tenth place – that comes of staying with the respectable group early on and becoming educated to their pace.

The team race was easily won by Motherwell Y.M.C.A., and Aberdeen A.A.C.’s enthusiasm in making such a long trip was rewarded with third place.

Results:-

1, J. L. Stewart (Vale of Leven) 46min. 41sec. (record); 2, I. McCafferty (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 47-23; 3, Andrew Brown (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 47-39; 4, I Young (Edinburgh University) 48-1; 5, A. J. Wood (Aberdeen A.A.C.) 44-44; 6, A. Blamire (Edinburgh University) 48-48; 7, P. MacLagan (Victoria Park) 49-3; 8, Alex. Brown (Motherwell Y.M.C.A.) 49-10; 9 D. P. McGregor (Edinburgh Southern) 49-17; 10, G. M. Brown (Edinburgh Southern) 49-23

Team race – 1, Motherwell Y.M.C.A. 13pts; 2, Edinburgh Southern 31pts; 3, Aberdeen 43pts.

1968

Splendid win for McCafferty

 By RON MARSHALL

After the Tom Scott Memorial Road Race on Saturday from Law to Motherwell I. McCafferty made one of those decisions brought on by physical discomfort, that seem permanent at the time but could very well change later. He would run in no more 10-mile road races.

He had just won the event convincingly from G. Bryan-Jones after nine and a half miles of close company from Jones and a group that lessened in numbers as each mile rolled by. But the price McCafferty paid for breaking in new shoes was the formation of two throbbing blisters, the bruised blood underneath shouting out to be released.

With his big toe nails trimmed intentionally to half their size his feet wouldn’t have held the gaze of the aesthetically minded for too long, but his running was worth watching. No attempt was made to break away from the leading group of five – Andrew and Alex Brown, I. Young, K. Grant and Bryan-Jones – until the last half mile when he scampered away from the last named. His time, 48min. 39sec., was nearly two minutes outside the course record set last year by J. L. Stewart, but a strong wind in some measure contributed to that.

 Rough justice

 The wind gave me another chance to see the kind of justice that road runners dispense to each other when no officials are at hand. One of the leaders was hugging so close to those in front for shelter that his feet and elbows were making unwelcome advances. A combined reproach from the others and a quick thump from an elbow put paid to any further interference.

Special mention ought to be made of the fourth place of Young, whom I seem constantly to overlook in Edinburgh University’s team. He ran courageously throughout, never losing sight of the leading bunch, and finished only half a minute behind the winner.

Law and District, with their three counters in the first six places, ran away with the team prize, 19 points ahead of Edinburgh University.

Results:-

1, I. McCafferty (Law) 48min. 39sec.; 2, G. Bryan-Jones (Edinburgh University) 48-49; 3, Alex Brown (Law) 48-55; 4, I. Young (Edinburgh University) 49-9; 5, K. Grant (Dundee Hawkhill) 49-14; 6, Andrew Brown (Law) 49-22; 7, N. Morrison (Shettleston) 50-24; 8, A. J. Wood (Aberdeen) 50-50; 9, W. Mather (Teviotdale) 50-55; 10, A. Johnston (Victoria Park) 51-4

1969

Convincing win for McCafferty 

By RON MARSHALL

Ian McCafferty, who vowed last year after having won the Tom Scott Memorial road race that he was finished with 10-mile events, returned on Saturday and duly covered the distance for another convincing victory.

Blistered feet caused the trouble last time and so on Saturday he took it as easily as was possible in a field of 110 that included such notable opponents as Lachie Stewart, Dick Wedlock, and Gareth Bryan-Jones.

Before the start McCafferty appeared unconcerned about the outcome, saying that his track commitments in the next few weeks must take priority over a 10-mile road race, but it’s hard to subdue the competitive element in most athletes once the gun goes, and the Carluke man is no exception.

A group containing most of the above plus Harry Gorman set the pace in the early stages out of Law and along the main A73 road heading for Wishaw, but it was clear that Stewart, Wedlock, McCafferty, and Bryan-Jones were going to be the principle actors as they passed the Motherwell boundary.

McCafferty, having played doggo all the way, decided the time had come to put the others through the hoop with less than a mile to go. He changed gear so smoothly, put his head down just that fraction lower, always a sign of added determination from him, and left the others to settle the minor positions.

His winning time, 49min. 14sec., gave him a lead of about 80 yards at the finish over Stewart, who in turn was comfortably ahead of Wedlock.

Team race

The team race was Shettleston’s, finishing their leading men in second, third, and sixth positions. Edinburgh Southern, although they totalled the same points as Aberdeen A.A.C., 33, were given second place under S.A.A.A. rules (their last counting man was ahead of Aberdeen’s).

The junior five miles from Wishaw to Motherwell went to J. Dingwall (Edinburgh University), whose 26min. 4sec. was four secs ahead of W. Burns (Larkhall). Larkhall took the team race with 14 points.

Results:-

1, I. McCafferty (Law and District) 49min. 14sec.; 2, J. L. Stewart (Shettleston) 49-26; 3, R. Wedlock (Shettleston) 49-38; 4, G. Bryan-Jones (Edinburgh Southern); 5, J. Brennan (Maryhill); 6, W. Scally (Shettleston); 7, W. Ewing (Aberdeen); 8, Andrew Brown (Law and District).

Team race – 1, Shettleston, 11 points; 2, Edinburgh Southern, 33; 3, Aberdeen, 33

Junior five miles – 1, J. Dingwall (Edinburgh University), 26min. 4sec,; 2, W. Burns (Larkhall), 26-8; 3, J. Sorbie (Larkhall), 26-15.

Veterans’ prize – H. V. Mitchell (Shettleston).

1970

STEWART WINS COMFORTABLY 

By RON MARSHALL

The Tom Scott Memorial road race the official opener to the S.A.A.A. track season, brought much encouragement to Lachie Stewart (Shettleston Harriers) when he covered the 10-miles from Law to Motherwell in 47min. 46sec., the fastest since his 1967 course record of 46min. 41sec.

That he is shaping into a superb state of fitness was evident from his condition as he crossed the winning line. Within seconds he was breathing normally and talking about the race, his only complaint being the bout of catarrh that constantly attends his long distance efforts.

In second place, 200 yards behind, came his clubmate, Dick Wedlock, and after a similar gap was Donald MacGregor (Edinburgh Southern), doing a spot of short-distance build-up for the Scottish marathon championship on May 16.

It was he who set the early pace through Law and out onto the A73, but after about a mile and a half Stewart forged ahead, closely followed by Wedlock. The latter, with as low a heel-lift as Stewart’s is high, always offers him a dour challenge, but usually can always watch as the yardage between grows maddeningly into an irretrievable gulf.

That was again the pattern on Saturday, but finishing second to such a determined, talented runner is not worth the disappointment Wedlock sometimes endures.

Ian McCafferty did not, after all, decide to run. His father, who watched Saturday’s proceedings, thought Ian was probably fit enough but was anxious to avoid a recurrence of the leg twist he received last month in Vichy. Mr McCafferty had no idea when his son’s first competitive appearance this season would be.

The senior team race went to Shettleston Harriers, who totalled 24 points, four fewer than Clydesdale, with Edinburgh Southern third on 58.

The junior five miles from Wishaw to Motherwell was won by Douglas Gunstone (Dundee Hawkhill) in 24min. 32sec. Ronnie MacDonald (Monkland Harriers), the Scottish youths cross-country champion was second, ahead of Colin Falconer (Springbrn), the Scottish and English junior champion. Larkhall won the team race with 22 points.

Tom Scott Memorial race results:-

1, J. L. Stewart (Shettleston) 47min. 46sec.; 2, R. Wedlock (Shettleston) 48-17; 3, D. F. MacGregor (Edinburgh Southern) 48-52; 4, A. F. Faulds (Stirling A.A.C.) 49-33; 5, H. Gorman (Springburn) 49-45; 6, E. Knox (Springburn) 50-4.

1972

Burst on incline gives Downie victory

 By RON MARSHALL

Sam Downie, on the threshold of what he calls an experimental season in track athletics, gave himself the best possible start on Saturday by winning the Tom Scott Memorial Road Race from Law to Motherwell.

The 21-year-old Falkirk Victoria Harrier, a probable entrant this September at Borough Road College, where Alan Pascoe among other notable athletes studied physical education, is limbering up, so to speak, as a labourer at a local foundry. He has no misgivings about possible ill-effects on his training.

“My speedwork is coming along amazingly well (he trains in a local Falkirk public park), I’ve never really buckled down to track work, preferring cross-country the last couple of years,” he said.

Downie, winner of the Eastern District cross-country title earlier this year, agreed his form took an alarming dip just after that win but all signs on Saturday were of a startling and successful recovery.

He was always comfortably with the leading group in the first few miles of the 10-mile trek, sharing the pace with Douglas Gunstone, Willie Day, the Wight brothers, and Colin Martin. Inevitably cliques emerged, the one that mattered most consisting of Downie, Day, and Gunstone.

As mile after mile was devoured, the leaders having deserted the relatively clean air for the pale orangy hue that hangs about parts of the Motherwell-Wishaw area, Day began to find the pace uncomfortable and the battle for the impressive Tom Scott statuette was now between Downie and Gunstone.

Half a mile from home a tactical burst from Downie on an incline sealed the issue. He carved out a 10-yard gap in as many seconds and maintained the pressure to the finish, clocking 47 minutes 45 seconds, which was eight seconds better than Gunstone. Day was third.

This was only Downie’s second run in the Tom Scott – he was thirty-first last year – and although it must be pointed out that McCafferty, Stewart, and Wedlock and one or two others were missing on Saturday, this performance, just over a minute outside the series record, promises a worthwhile 1972 on the track for Downie.

The junior five miles, from Wishaw to Motherwell, was a comprehensive win for Jim BrowN in 22 minutes 30 seconds. His Monkland clubmate, Ronnie McDonald was second 15 seconds behind.

Senior result:-

1, S. Downie (Falkirk Victoria), 47min. 45sec.; 2, D. Gunstone (Dundee Hawkhill) 47-53; 3, W. Day (Falkirk Victoria), 48-1; 4, J. Wight (Edinburgh A.C.) 48-8; 5, A. Wight (Edinburgh A.C.) 48-17; 6, C. Martin (Dumbarton), 48-42.

1973

Dingwall wins Law race

Jim Dingwall (Edinburgh University) won the Tom Scott road race on Saturday over a slightly altered route from Law to Motherwell.

His time, 48min. 8sec., gave him a lead of about 100 yards over Douglas Gunstone in what was one of the weakest Tom Scott fields for years.

Senior result:-

1, J. Dingwall (Edinburgh University), 48min. 8sec.; 2, D. Gunstone (Edinburgh A.C.) 48-22; 3, R. Wedlock (Shettleston), 48-28; 4, J. Wight (Edinburgh A.C.) 48-28; 5, A. Wight (Edinburgh A.C.) 48-32; 6, M. Craven (Edinburgh Southern), 48-37; 7, C. Martin (Dumbarton) 48-38; 8. W. Day (Falkirk Victoria) 48-58

Team race – 1, Falkirk Victoria (W. Day 8, S. Downie 9, W. Sharp 20) 37 points, 2, Dumbarton (7, 13, 26) 46; 3, Law 67.

Junior (5 miles) – L. Spence (Wellpark H.), 24min 34sec.; 2, J. McLuckie (Larkhall) 25-5; 3, A. Hutton (Edinburgh A.C.) 25-29; 4, A. Gilmour (Law) 25-43; 5, J. Thompson (Law) 26-5; 6, J. Lawson (Springburn) 26-10 Team race – 1, Larkhall (McLuckie 2, Gilmour 4, G. Young 16) 22; 2, Wellpark H. (10, 12, 17) 39.

1975

Brown’s record time 

By Ron Marshall

 The capricious nature of sporting form was well illustrated on Saturday when Jim Brown (Clyde Valley) won the Tom Scott road race from Law to Motherwell; not only by a wide margin but in record time as well.

Only three weeks ago the same man was languishing in seventy-fourth position in the International Cross Country Championship, a race in which he had been fourth the previous year. With that weighing on his mind, then Brown had approached the Tom Scott with more than a degree of apprehension. He sorely needed a morale booster.

For a long time he would be deprived of satisfaction. Andy McKean (Edinburgh AC), the national cross-country champion, set a fearsome pace over the first four miles, dragging what appeared to be a reluctant Jim Brown in his wake at least 40 yards behind. Jim Dingwall, going for his third successive win, was already showing signs of distress, and his “triple” bid was latterly no more successful than Red Rum’s at Liverpool. He finished third.

Punishing Pace 

Through Wishaw’s main street, McKean sagged a bit. Brown sensed the lapse and swept past, not gradually but punishingly fast. Within seconds he had 30 yards on the other and the race was over. The net three miles to the finish only served to allow Brown to build up an ultimate winning lead of 175 yards, and he crossed the line in 46min. 33sec. This beat Lachie Stewart’s 1967 record by eight seconds.

The winner had two main concerns after the race. The first was to retrieve his front plate of teeth from the bus carrying the athletes’ belongings. He never runs with it fitted, but demands of a radio interview made it essential. His second worry was the appearance of some raw blood blisters on both feet. A complete rest yesterday, he imagined, would be required to let them subside.

Brown returns this week to his physical education studies at that breeding ground of sporting prowess, Borough Road College in London. His first big race, apart from student fixtures, is on June 11, when he runs against Brendan Foster and Ian Stewart. You cannot choose sterner opponents than that.

Saturday’s result:

  1. J. Brown (Clyde Valley), 46m. 33sec.: 2. A. McKean (Edinburgh AC), 46-59: 3. J. Dingwall (Edinburgh AC), 47.51: 4. D. Gunstone (Edinburgh AC), 47-57: 5. L. Spence (Strathclyde University), 48-11: 6. J. Wight (Edinburgh AC). 48-14

TS 85 AP

Alan Puckrin

1980

Leg work pays off for Brown

Jim Brown retained his title in the Tom Scott Memorial Road Race from Law to Motherwell on Saturday.  He was in excellent form, just failing to break his own record by one second, and finished 400 yards clear of Allister Hutton (Edinburgh Southern Harriers), who was running over the 10-miles distance for the first time.

Brown, whose winning time was 46min. 34sec., has been doing high-mileage training of 120 miles a week preparing for the AAA marathon championship at Milton Keynes in three weeks time.

This heavy schedule is paying off for Brown as he looked and felt very fit. He said after the race that he intended waiting until the seven-miles mark before making his effort but felt so good that he decided to go at three miles after he had been in the leading bunch along with Hutton, Dingwall, Martin Craven (Edinburgh Southern), and Colin Farquharson (Clyde Valley).

  1. J. Brown (Clyde Valley) 46min. 34sec.: 2. A. Hutton (Edinburgh Southern) 47-56: 3. J. Dingwall (Falkirk Victoria) 48-43.

Jap pips Brown for treble

 Despite a brave effort to score his third successive victory in the Tom Scott Memorial 10-mile road race from Law to Motherwell on Saturday Jim Brown (Clyde Valley AC) was outpaced by Japanese 10,000 metre champion Yasunori Hamada of Edinburgh AC.

The race quickly developed into a two-man affair, with the leaders breaking clear of the 185-man filed early in the race. Each took a turn of leading and they were under the course record at half-distance, but the hot afternoon took its toll of the tiring runners and the pace dropped on the hilly approaches to Motherwell.

As the runners turned into the final 200-meter straight Hamada was fractionally in front of Brown. The Scot sprinted, to be repelled by the leader, and the lead changed hands as the rivals passed each other. Hamada’s final lunge gave him the verdict in the closest finish in the 22-year old history of the race.

Results:

  1. Y. Hamada (EAC) 47min. 39sec.; 2. J. Brown (Clyde Valley) 47-40; 3. C. Farquharson (Clyde Valley) 49-46. First veteran R. McKay (Clyde Valley) 54.43.

Team – 1, Edinburgh AC 14pts.; 2, Cambuslang 33; 3, Bellahouston 36.

1982

Athletics 

Allister Hutton (Edinburgh Southern Harriers) smashed the course record by 28 seconds in winning the Tom Scott Memorial 10-mile road race in a time of 46mins 5sec. Jim Brown (Clyde Valley) came second in 46.27

P Gunstone - Tom Scott 10 Miler 1st Woman

Pam Gunstone, first woman, 1985

1983

Athletics

 Though there was a record field of 437 for the Tom Scott Memorial 10-mile road race from Law to Motherwell on Saturday, Scotland’s top road runners were missing – preparing for next Sunday’s London Marathon.

Lindsay Robertson (Edinburgh AC) who will be representing Scotland in London won in 49 min. 12 sec, a time which would not have placed him in the first dozen last year.

Terry Mitchell (Fife AC) was runner-up in 49 min 31 sec, and his clubmate Donald MacGregor took third place in 49 min 40 sec, so winning the Scottish veteran’s championship by almost three minutes from Roddy McFarquhar (Aberdeen AAC).

Fife AC won the team prize from Edinburgh AC and Bellahouston Harriers.

Athletics 

John Graham (Clyde Valley AC), who now lives in Birmingham, returned to his home town of Motherwell and won the twenty-third Tom Scott Memorial 10-mile road race from Law to Motherwell.

Graham led from the start and finished unpressed in 47min. 09sec., more than 300 yards ahead of his nearest rival in a field that exceeded 300.

Yvonne Murray (Edinburgh AC) won the women’s prize, finishing sixty-fifth overall in 54min. 49sec., the fastest time ever run by a woman in Scotland.

TS 85 Top Ten

The top ten in 1985.  Still a very high quality field

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You can see from the results how popular the course and race was among the runners – due in no small way to the organisation and effort put in by Tom’s club mates at Motherwell YMCA and by his former employers.   The times are also an indication of how fast a course it was – although it was said and believed to be downhill, it depends on what is meant by downhill!   Read what the statisticians at www.arrs.net have to say about downhill and what it means.  The coverage went from good to excellent to poor to downright disgraceful (note the last two!) and then it was excellent again when Scotland’s Runner covered it in the mid-eighties to early nineties.    It carries on, and for up to date results plus those missing above, have a look at the race website at the address above.

Since the above was written, Mick McGeoch of Cardiff has pout together a marvellous list of stats for the event: all the winners, men and women, all the men’s times inside 50 minutes, and all the women inside 60.   See it  here     Colin Youngson followed this up by compiling a comprehensive list of men’s veteran trophy winners and you can get it   here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brampton to Carlisle

Brampton shot

 

Although run in England, the Brampton to Carlisle Road Race is very popular with Scots and Scots have done remarkably well in the event.   One of the problems over the years for men wanting to run in the race, was that it usually coincided with the Edinburgh to Glasgow Relay.   That meant that most of the top runners could not run if their club was in the major domestic race of the winter season.  Even if their club was not in the relay, then the atmosphere at this wonderful event persuaded many of those to go along and watch.       The first Brampton was in 1951 and 2011 saw the Sixtieth Anniversary of the event.    As an event outside Scotland, we will cover it from a Scottish point of view with notes of their performances where known rather than in a strictly chronological fashion.

The race was over eight and a half miles when it was first organised in England when it was organised by Border Harriers in 1951, and the first five were won by Bill Boak of Elswick.   Bill is now in his eighties and lives only a few miles from the finish.   Border Harriers still organise the race but it has been long established as a ten mile event.   The race starts in a village, follows the B6264 for most of the way and finishes in a city and usually attracts upwards of 600 runners.    Originally, in the days of Bill Boak, it went straight from point to point but by adding in a loop it was easily made into a ‘ten’ which is advertised as the oldest ten mile race in England.   The picture above gives an idea of the course and there is a short video clip posted by Tyne Valley Striders of their runners crossing the bridge at http://wn.com/Brampton_Carlisle which includes some (very) brief clips of some Scottish runners.

 Only two men have ever won the race three times and both were Scots.   Jim Alder of Morpeth won the race in 1963, 1964 and 1965 and Alan Murray of Edinburgh University won in 1966, 1969 and 1970.   Several English athletes have won it twice – Gerry North (Blackpool & Fylde) in 1959 and 1960, Nick Sloane of the same club in 1973 and 1974, John Calvert of Blackburn in 1977 and 1978, Steve Cram in 1984 and 1987 and Mike Scott of Border Harriers winning the club promoted event in 2001 and 2005.   Ron Hill won in 1974 in 46:40 which was a course record but it only stood for a year with Sloane breaking it a year later with 45:50 which still stands.    It is clearly a top class race and well supported by athletes of the highest quality which makes the successes of the Scottish runners all the more impressive.   Scots have always run well in the race, and Ian Elliot of Edinburgh Southern won it in 1976 in a time of 47:50.    It is hard to understand why there is no easily available list of winners from the start of the race either in print or on the net.   Sandra Branney tells the tale of Alex Robertson going down to the race and entering on the day.   He ran wearing a Barney Rubble T Shirt and went off fast.   The rest of the field let him go thinking he would be back: he didn’t and went on to win.   It was at a time when those entering on the day were not eligible for any award so he was off home without his deserved and earned reward!    One of the best runs that I have noted was that of Andy Brown who won it in 1962 in the superb time of 48:37.    In 2011 the local Brampton newspaper reported that only four men in the last 20 years had been sub-49 minutes for the race.

The Scottish women have possibly done even better than the men though.  Hayley Haining is the only woman to have won it three times (2004, 2005, 2006) with Lorna Irving (1983 and 1986), Lynne Harding ((1994 and 1996), Sandra Branney (1997 and 1998) and Lynne MacDougall (2000 and 2001) all winning it twice.  Between 2001 and 2009, Clydesdale Harriers supported the race and the women won several individual and team awards with the veteran women taking first place no fewer than five consecutive years (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009).  Not only did they win the Lady Vets and Ladies races in 2006, but in 2008, Scotland provided all three award winning teams in the Ladies and Lady Veterans races.

Only Scots have won the race three times – two men and a woman.   What’s the attraction of the Brampton?   Hayley Haining says that she really likes the race for several reasons: first, the course is flat and scenic as it winds through the little villages outside Carlisle; second she has found that with a lot of men running at around her speed, she can get a good race instead of being in a “no-man’s land” for most of the race.    She adds that ironically the course is registered as being a downhill course but it has a long killer hill at the end as you climb up into Carlisle.   We can start with Hayley’s three wins and two course records.

Hayley Haining only ran in the race three times and won all three.   In 2004, she was twenty second in 56:27 which saw her two minutes and eleven seconds and twenty seven minutes ahead of the second woman.    Then in 2005, she was eleventh overall in 54:50 with second Lady 24th in 56:35.   First Scottish man (Blair Matthew, Calderglen) to finish was one place and three seconds behind her.    Finally in 2007 she was timed at 54:31 for eight finisher overall.   At the time she was a Lady Vet 35 and the next Lady was 24th in a time outside 57 minutes.   Not only that but she was first Scot to finish with the first man (Marcus Scotney) being two places behind in 54:59.   A quite remarkable record and she is still (in 2012) still the only three time winner of the women’s race.

Sandra Branney won the race in 1997 and 1998.   On one of these occasions she arrived at Brampton, did her usual pre-race strides and went to change into her race shoes only to find that she had brought the wrong shoe bag!   Her racers were back in Carlisle leaving her with no option but to run in a cheap pair of old trainers.   So annoyed with herself was she that she took off at the start like a rocket – not at all her usual start.    But she won which is what counts.   Another memorable race was in 2004 when she turned 50.   Pete Mulholland kept age-group records and pointed out that Paula Fudge had the ten mile record at 60 minutes +.   Sandra really wanted the record so targeted the Brampton.   Race day, perfect weather, no wind.   She ran 59:06 and was highly delighted.   Pete confirmed that the course was legal despite the alleged drop mentioned by Hayley above.   Third Lady and of course first in her category.

The British veterans website writes up the record as follows: “Branney became the first British W50 athlete to breach the 60 minute barrier.   This run by Branney was over the much debated Brampton to Carlisle course and the argument as to whether it should be classed as downhill.   Tim Grose the statistician who supplies the official British middle and long distance statistics, admits “After a study of the Ordnance Survey 1:25000 map by John Falvey, the course appears down as it exceeds a drop of 1m/km.”   However the Association of Road Running Statisticians (ARRS) sets a limit of 5m/km before a road race can be categorised as downhill.so Grose feels that these figures cannot be ignored.”

Lynn Harding was born in Milngavie but lived in the Newcastle area doing most of her racing in the North of England.   Lynn won the Brampton to Carlisle in 1994 (Commonwealth Games year where she ran in the Marathon) and 1996.

Lynne MacDougall won twice  –  in 2000 and 2001.   In the latter race she won in 55:28 when finishing 22nd, which was seventeen places and one minute fifty seconds ahead of the second women.   The first Scottish man to finish was Allan Adams of Clydesdale Harriers in third place in 50:54.   Lynne’s comments on the race the first time she ran, she was very close to her pb for the distance which was well outside the course record of 51:51 and belongs to Angie Pain/Hulley.   Like Hayley  and Sandra, she liked the event because “even in the noughties it seemed quite ‘old school’.    It takes place on a Saturday afternoon, on pretty much the same course, with mostly club athletes and a lot of very good runners have won in the past.  There are very few 10 mile races around now as well – I hope it never becomes a half marathon!  The course: it is very fast overall, but there are some uphills as well and although point-to-point, it isn’t boring.   There is usually a good group of men to run with to keep the pace going.   I hope the race continues!”

I mentioned the women from Clydesdale Harriers earlier and would like to expand on that – mainly on the veteran women.   Five firsts, two seconds and a third in five years is not bad going.   There had been several men from the club going down with Allan Adams the most successful, having a best time of 49:35 when finishing third in 2003 before the club started to send a group of runners to the event.   In 2004 Pamela McCrossan was second LV 40 and the vets team was fifth.   Possibly encouraed by that the team made a point of sending a good team down and in 2005 they had two team awards.   The Lady Vets team of Ann Murray (3), Pamela McCrossan and Aileen Scott won the race and were second in the open ladies team race where Ann was eighth, Pamela tenth and Aileen sixteenth.   In 2006 they did even better by winning the overall women’s team race (Melanie Douglas in fifth, Pamela thirteenth and Aileen twenty first)  and the vets as well with the counters being Pamela, Aileen and Marina McCallum with Pamela third LV45.   2007 saw the hat-trick in the vets race when Pamela (9), Ann (11) and Kath Scott (12) won the vets race and were second the open race.   Pamela was third L45 and Ann was third L40.   In 2008 they did it again – first Lady Vets team and third overall with Pamela, Ann and Kath being the heroines this time.   Better still, Pamela was the first Lady Vet to finish and Ann was the third L40.   They went back in 2009 but without the same degree of success – the Lady Vets team on Marina McCallum, Aileen Scott and Kath Scott was third and the trio were fifth in the overall race. Pamela reckons that she won a vets prize and a team prize every time she went to the race and her 10 miles pb was done in 2008 when she was clocked at 64:27   They haven’t been back since but the series of first places and fine individual runs kept up the Scottish tradition of doing well at Brampton.

Hugh Barrow travelled down in 1959 and won the Junior race by ten yards in the one and a half mile race: see the picture and story above.   .

The men have been much harder to find information on.    We know that two men as noted above have won the event three times each but beyond that it is difficult.   I contacted Border Harriers twice but there was no response to the query but we do have information from individuals about the race.   For instance, David Donnet, ex-Springburn Harrier now living and working in Holland, tells us that in 1991 the race was won by Carl Thackeray in 46:21 and he was followed by three Scots – David himself in 48:48:19, Mike Carroll in 48:21 and Graham Crawford in 48:48.    Graham Crawford was also Springburn but they had no third counter so they were nowhere in the team race.   Not only that, but they were in trouble back at home for doing it when the club needed them in the Edinburgh to Glasgow which was on the following morning!    The Scots presence was certainly felt that year.    We can however have a look a Scots in Brampton over the past ten years or so.   In 2001 and 2002 Allan Adams of Clydesdale Harriers flew the Scottish flag when he was third in 50:39 and 49:35.   Teams?   Calderglen was third in 2002

Beith Harriers New Year’s Day Race

Beith Classic

Race Start in 1940’s: is it Andy Forbes in the front row?

The Beith New Year’s Day race was a fixture when I started running in 1957 but the problem was that, being on 1st January, and in Scotland, there was only skeleton public transport running.   It being the 1950’s not many had cars of their own – so if you wanted to run there you needed a car of your own, you needed to know someone with a car who would take you or you had to hit it lucky with trains and/or buses.   The thing is though that despite all those disincentives, the race was supported by international runners, Scottish champions and even Olympic athletes!    Local international runners like Ian Harris and Tom Cochrane ran there, Olympians such as Lachie Stewart, Ian McCafferty, Suttie-Smith, Alex Breckenridge and more recently Lynne MacDougall, cross-country internationals like Lawrie Spence, Eddie Bannon,  Andy Forbes, Jimmy Flockhart and Pat Moy, all travelled to Beith for the event.   Started in the late 1920’s it is still going strong.

I first ran in it when it was a cross-country race and remember one point in the trail where the path ran straight into a burn – but to get back out required getting up on to a raised bank on the other side.   Not easy.   I remember once when it was a road race, Andy Brown seeing brother Alex doing some strides away from the start line when the field was getting in order.   He called his young brother back and pointed out that they would not start the race if Alex was 50 yards down the trail in the direction of the race but they might if he were 50 yards behind the start line!    Only the wording was more direct.   I remember sitting beside Ian McCafferty in the changing room and him showing me the new shoes he had just got from Puma with things like suckers on the sole.    In those days it was a men only affair but like most races now, it incorporates races for women and younger athletes are also catered for.   Information below came mostly from Kenny Phillips and stats are mainly from Alex Wilson who has posted all the winners on the Association of Road Runners website at . www.arrs.net/HP_Kilbirnie4.htm  .

Other than the Red Hose race at Carnwath in Lanarkshire it is said to be the oldest race in Scotland, being slightly ahead of the Balloch to Clydebank race in Dunbartonshire.   Alex Wilson says that he thinks the race dates from 1926 but the results start at 1929

  It was always held on 1st January except when that fell on a Sunday when the race was run on the 2nd January.      What I would like to do is look at the winners and show how the standard that was high at the start has been maintained – the Emsley Carr Mile in London has a book in which the winners write their name.   Had such a book been started for the Beith races, then with all the signatures that would have been collected in it, you would have had a very valuable document.

Pre-War Race Winners

Date Winner Club Time Distance
1st January 1929 J Suttie Smith Dundee Thistle H 40:48 6.5 Miles
1st January 1930 S Tombe West of Scotland H 39:40 6 Miles
1st January 1931 CP Wilson Irvine YMCA H 38:42
1st January 1932 Maxwell Stobbs Catrine H 33:35
1st January 1933 J Flockhart Shettleston H   5 Miles
1st January 1934 J Campbell Bellahouston H 25:50 5 Miles
1st January 1935 J Flockhart Shettleston H 25:35 5 Miles
1st January 1936 J Flockhart 33:34 6 Miles
1st January 1937 P Allwell Beith H 32:56 6 Miles
1st January 1938 P Allwell 12:35 2.5 Miles
1st January 1939 M Barr Beith H 24:35 4.5 Miles
1st January 1940 A McGregor Plebeian H 20:15  

The first of these, John Suttie Smith was an OIympic 10000m runner who ran in the Amsterdam Games in 1928 where he finished tenth in 31:50.  He had best times of 14:41.2 for Three Miles, 15:22.6 for 5000n, 20:24.8 for Four Miles, 30:47 for Six Miles and 51:37.8 for Ten Miles (set in 1929).   An Olympian in 1928 who set a personal best for Ten Miles in 1929, he was clearly at the top of his game when he won the Beith New Year’s Day Race.  He also won the Scottish Cross-Country title five times (1928, ’29, ’30, ’31, ’32).  The other notable in the pre-war victors list was of course Jimmy Flockhart of Shettleston Harriers who won the World Cross Country Championship in 1937 and the Scottish championship four times (1934, ’34, ’36 and ’37).   Of the others, Sammy Tombe ran in the International Cross-Country Championships in 1928, 1933 and 1934, CP Wilson ran in them in 1928 and 1931, Stobbs in 1930, 1931 and 1932,   Campbell in 1935 and 1936 and Allwell in 1936 and 1939.

The distance was much longer prior to 1937 than it has been since and the following report from the local paper in 1934, received from Kenny Phillips,  maybe explains its early popularity.   “Beith Harriers open ballot team race was held on Monday.   This event is now recognised as a means of identifying form for the Scottish National Championships in March, and this year it was of particular interest at the International Championship is being held in Scotland, the venue being Ayur Racecoure.   Conditions on Monday morning were all against the prospect of a good entry or a good race.   However the weather cleared a bit in the afternoon and fully 35 runners faced the starter, Mr Wm Johnstone.   These runners were balloted into nine teams comprising four to run, three to count.   The ground conditions were none too good, but as it subsequently showed, this did not deter the keenness of the runners or spectators.   That this race is a much-looked-for one on Ne’erday can be taken for granted by the number of people who were present at the start, and who followed the race from advantageous positions on the course.   The trail, which was laid and marked out under the careful eye of TJ McAllister, differed from the one usually used for this race but which was excellently laid out from the spectator’s point of view, as one could see almost three-fourths of the race.   This is an unusual thing in a cross-country race and was fully appreciated by the spectators, who took advantage of the many viewpoints to follow the course of the runners.  

The runners were got off to a good start by Mr Johnstone, and J Campbell (Bellahouston H) quickly took the lead, followed by G Ferguson (Beith and Gala H), J Gifford (Victoria Park) and HW Davidson (Eglinton H).   After almost a mile had been covered, J Campbell had established a lead of 30 yards from Gifford with Davidson and J Anderson (Lochwinnoch H) close behind.   Then came DE Thomson (Victoria Park),  J Millar (Beith H) and G Hunter (Bellahouston H).   On completing the first circuit, J Campbell had increased his lead on Gifford, while Davidson had also lost ground, although still lying third.   These were followed by J MIllar (Beith) who was beginning to move up and who was receiving plenty of encouragement on passing the crowd of interested spectators.   At the four mile stage, it was easily seen that that it was going to be Campbell’s race unless anything unexpected happened.   He was now leading by about 100 yards from Gifford with Jack Millar 30 yards further behind.   The field was still strung out by this time and there was a difference of almost five minutes between first and last.   At the finish there were no chages in the first three positions although J Millar made a valiant effort to get the better of Gifford but just failing.   J Campbell (who is a previous winner of this race) won easily and proved to be a popular victor with the spectators who had followed his forcing race with interest and he was given a warm reception on finishing as were second and third.”

The report is of interest for several reasons, not least being the fact that the Ayrshire spectators were so interested or so appreciative of the winner’s efforts.      The fact that it was used as a guage of form for the National is of interest as there was not nearly as full a calendar then as there is now and there were many inter-club runs to fill the gaps.   A race over the approximate championship distance on the country would prove fairly popular.    The fact that it was a ‘spectator friendly’ trail is well ahead of the time too – even in the 1960’s trails often consisted of one large nine mile loop with the officials watching the runners disappear into the distance before going to shelter in a building or car and having a cup of tea!

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There was a wee hiatus between 1941 and 1949 for obvious reasons and Kenny Phillips has this to say about the restart of the race in ’49:

At the Committee Meeting on 5/2/48 it was proposed to re-establish the New Year Day race to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the club.   The race would be a Ballot Team Race to give everyone a chance of a prize over 2.5 miles of road with three sets of team prizes.   At the AGM on 7/9/48 the Secretary reported on the successful road race of 2.5 miles for Novices won by H Fenion of Lochwinnoch  in the fast time for a Youth of 13 mins 03 secs.   Harry went on to become Scottish marathon champion and Beith were disappointed that he did not join Beith Harriers instead of Bellahouston Harriers. 

In the first postwar 1949 Ballot Team Race over 2.5 miles, there were 35 runners with Andy Forbes first in 13 min 24 sec, 180 yards in front of R Climie, Bellahouston, second, J Reid West Kilbride third, and the novice T McNeish, Irvine, fourth.   The first ballot team was W Ritchie Victoria Park, B Hainey, Doon, and J Ellis of Victoria Park 11th.   The first prize was an oak occasional table donated by the Co-operative Furniture Factory in Beith, and the first team prizes were three mahogany tea trays made by Jack Millar, the 1929 Novice Champion.”

Kenny also believes that the race was probably cross-country until about 1990 when it was changed to road     After the war it was planned as a two lap, four mile cross-country course.   However in 1949 due to severe frost, it was dangerous underfoot and the course was changed to a 2.5 mile road which Andy Forbes won wearing spikes on the slippy road surface.

Andy went on to win the race in 1950 and 1951.   The Ballot Team format was fairly popular at the time.   It was meant to address what was seen as a problem, or if not a problem, a basic case of fairness in the winning of team prizes.   In all the main races – National, District and County as well some open races, the same clubs won every time out with other good standard athletes missing out time after time.   The solution was to place the names of all entries into a hat and draw out three or four names at random, these to form Ballot Team 1, then three or four more to form Ballot Team 2 and so on.   Even when I started in the sport in the 1960’s I ran in several events where the format was used – Garscube was one such, but the biggest race of the type that I competed in was the Balloch to Clydebank 12 Miles Race.   By winning the race three times, Andy was one of several multi-winners.

Post War Race Winners

Date Winner Club Time Distance
1st January 1949 Andy Forbes Victoria Park 13:24 2.5 Miles
1st January 1950 20:57 2.5 Miles
1st January 1951   4 Miles
1st January 1952
1st January 1953 Alex Breckenridge Victoria Park 20:17 4 Miles
1st January 1954 Eddie Bannon Shettleston H 20:37 4 Miles
1st January 1955 Andy Brown Motherwell YMCA 20:46 4 Miles
1st January 1956 19:38 4 Miles
1st January 1957 Pat Moy Vale of Leven 20:34 4 Miles
1st January 1958 Alex Breckenridge Victoria Park 20:40 4 Miles
1st January 1959 W Thomas Irvine YMCA 21:34 4 Miles

Andy Forbes was of course a Scottish and British Internationalist on the track with multiple Scottish selections on the country to his credit with the high spot maybe being the silver medal in the Empire Games in 1950.   He also won the Scottish Cross-Country Championship twice.   Alex Breckenridge was also a Scottish internationalist who emigrated to the United States and represented them as a marathon runner.   Andy Brown, Scottish track, road and country Internationalist who was one of the most inspiring of captains and was in fact Scottish International team captain for many years.   Eddie Bannon was a superb athlete on every surface and won the Scottish championship four times (1952, ’53, ’54 and ’56) and had seven appearances in the International race.     Pat Moy from the Vale of Leven  represented Scotland in the International CC Championships in 1956, 1957 and 1958 so he too was clearly a top class man for a considerable period  with the Beith win being right in the middle of his three year purple patch.   Clearly the race had some status when men of such high calibre came year after year on New Year’s Day to contest it.

Results from the Sixties

Date Winner Club Time Distance
1st January 1960 Pat Moy Vale of Leven 20:31 4 Miles
2nd January 1961 Ian Harris Beith Harriers 21:03 4 Miles
January 1962
1st January 1963 Lachie Stewart Vale of Leven 22:56 4.5 Miles
1st January 1964 Ian McCafferty Motherwell YMCA 20:59 4 Miles
1st January 1965 Andy Brown 20:25 4 Miles
1st January 1966 Ian McCafferty 21:33 4 Miles
2nd January 1967 18:58 4 Miles
1st January 1968 Alastair Johnston Victoria Park 24:48 4.5 Miles
1st January 1969 Dick Wedlock Shettleston H 19:58 4 Miles

Ian Harris was a first rate athlete who won the SAAA Marathon in 1963 as well as being a cross-country internationalist and – unfortunately for Scottish athletics – did most of his running in the colours of the Parachute Regiment all over the world.   Lachie Stewart and Ian McCafferty were both multi SAAA champions and Olympians too.  Lachie won the first ever SCCU Boys championship and won the Senior race in 1967 and 1968 while Ian won the Senior event in 1972 and had as one cross-country high point the third place in the international championship at Clydebank in 1969.    Alastair Johnston won several Scottish International representative honours and would undoubtedly have won many more had he not been involved in the dreadful accident with the stray hammer at Meadowbank.   One of the interesting features of the 1960’s was the introduction of age-group races in 1967.   Although the quality of runner was high, the numbers were not fantastic at this point and this move proved a success.   Lawrie Reilly of VPAAC won the junior boys race with Lawrie Spence fifth.

Winners from the 1970’s

Date Winner Club Time Distance
1st January 1970 Dick Wedlock Shettleston Harriers 19:48 4 Miles
1st January 1971 Henry Summerhill Shettleston Harriers   4 Miles
1st January 1972 Dick Wedlock Shettleston Harriers 19:56 4 Miles
1st January 1973        
1st January 1974 Lachie Stewart Shettleston Harriers   4 Miles
1st January 1975 Jim Thomson Law & District AAC 21:39 4 Miles
1st January 1976        
1st January 1977 Jim Golder Ayr 30:37 6 Miles
1st January 1978 Hugh Forgie Law & District AAC   6 Miles
1st January 1979        

It is not just the Beith races that have some gaps in the results for the 70’s and 80’s – I find a similar story in several other well-established races and I don’t know why this is the case.   There are also a number of Classic Races where the actual trophy has ‘disappeared’.   Results to fill in the gaps would be welcome.   The standard remained high though.   Dick Wedlock with three wins (1969, ’70 and ’72) was also a track internationalist (10000m at the 1970 Commonwealth Games) and won the Scottish Cross-Country title in 1969.   Jim Thomson was a very good runner but one whom many people thought could have been a great talent had he stayed with the sport.   Hugh Forgie and Jim Golder were in the main track runners who both gained Scottish selection for their preferred events of 800m and 1500m

Winners of the 80’s

Date Winner Club Time Distance
January 1980        
January 1981        
January 1982 Lawrie Spence Shettleston H    
January 1983 Lawrie Spence Shettleston H    
January 1984 Lawrie Spence Shettleston H 23:07 4.5 Miles
January 1985 Lawrie Spence Shettleston H 22:06 4.5 Miles
January 1986 Tommy Murray Greenock Glenpark H 23:41 4.5 Miles
January 1987 Chris Robison Spango Valley AAC 22:34 4.5 Miles
January 1988 Graeme Croll East Kilbride AAC 23:33 4.5 Miles
January 1989 Paul Larkin England 23:53 4.5 Miles

If we concentrate on the winners from this decade, Lawrie Spence of Greenock Glenpark, Shettleston Harriers, Spango Valley and Inverclyde stands out as one of the all-time greats of the sport.   A sub-four miler he also ran well under 2:20 for the marathon and captained the Scottish International Cross-Country team after Jim Alder ended his reign in that post.   One of five brothers, there seemed to be no event to which he could not turn his hand and he is now a very good coach indeed with Inverclyde AAC.   Graeme Croll was perhaps a bit unfortunate that he was steeplechasing at the same time as Tom Hanlon but he won more than his share of SAAA titles including the steeplechase and 10000m on consecutive days!   Tommy Murray and Chris Robison were two thirds of a triumvirate that was to dominate Scottish long distance running in the 90’s – both represented their country on the track, over the country, on the roads and in World Mountain Running championships.  Chris also represented England in the world event before he transferred allegiance to become on of the Scottish stars of the 90’s.    Paul Larkin was a member of Wolverhampton and Bilston AAC who could also turn his hand to most events on the track, road and country and represented England in the World Cross Country Championships.    The standard was still incredibly high for the Beith New Year’s Day Race.

Winners in the 90’s

Date Winner Club Time Distance
January 1990 Tommy Murray Greenock Glenpark H 22:35 4.64 Miles
January 1991 Tommy Murray Cambuslang H 23:30 4.64 Miles
January 1992 Chris Robison Spango Valley AAC 21:55 4.64 Miles
January 1993 Glen Stewart ESH 22:57 4.64 Miles
January 1994 Glen Stewart 23:02 4.64 Miles
January 1995 Tony Johnston Irvine 22:23 4.64 Miles
January 1996 Colin Brash Girvan AAC 23:57 4.64 Miles
January 1997 Alan Puckrin Kilbarchan 23:11 4.64 Miles
January 1998 David Gardiner Racing Club 24:08 4.64 Miles
January 1999 Jamie Reid Law & District AAC 24:10 4.64 Miles

Glen Stewart is the son of Lachie Stewart – the only father and son double act to win the Beith race – and was a very good track runner being the first British athlete to finish in the Commonwealth Games in Manchester in the 10000m as well as representing Scotland in the 5000m.    Glen ran for many clubs but as a senior he ran in the main for the various incarnations of Racing Club in Edinburgh after a short spell with ESH.   He has won the National Cross-Country title twice – in 2002 and 2004.      Tony Johnston was another track runner – English and so unable to represent Scotland but a credit to himself and his club in every race he turned out in.   Alan Puckrin was one of the few Scottish cross-country runners to get his picture on the front of Athletics Weekly.   A cross-country and track internationalist of some stature he was friendly and outgoing and a popular winner.   David Gardner won many medals as part of the Racing Club in Edinburgh and had the international championship been open to Scotland as it had been before the world body forced the amalgamation, he was one who would probably have gained selection.   Jamie Reid of Law & District was a very good marathon runner (see his profile on the Marathon Stars page) who could also run on country and track and who represented his country.

Winners in the 00’s

Date Winner Club Time Distance
January 2000 Jamie Reid Law & District 22:49 4.64 Miles
January 2001 Tommy Murray Inverclyde AAC 22:46 4.64 Miles
January 2002 Billy Richardson Irvine AAC 23:31 4.64 Miles
January 2003 Mark Pollard Inverclyde AAC 24:34 4.64 Miles
January 2004 Jamie Reid Cambuslang Harriers 23:06 4.64 Miles
January 2005 Chris MacKay Greenock Glenpark H 23:25 4.64 Miles
January 2006 23:20 4.64 Miles
January 2007 22:44 4.64 Miles
January 2008 David Millar Irvine AAC 23:12 4.64 Miles
January 2009 Ross Toole Kilbarchan AAC 23:00 4.64 Miles

Tommy Murray is still in there – his first victory was in 1986 and there he is winning again in 2001.   Tommy is also a very friendly guy but does not suffer fools gladly and has had some run-ins with authority in his career – he gets on fine with fellow runners though.   Tommy also has four wins in the National Cross-Country Championship – in 1989, ’91, ’92 and ’93.    Jamie Reid has two more victories here and if you look at his profile, you will see that he is indeed a worthy winner.   Billy Richardson is another who is unfortunate not to have been racing when Scotland was a separate country in the world championships because he would have had several vests.   As it was, he was unfortunate to have been running at the same time as the Quinn, Robison and Murray group.   This decade in the results of the race, as indeed all of them, reflects the situation in Scottish athletics.   The dominant clubs are no longer Victoria Park, Bellahouston Harriers or Shettleston Harriers – it’s the clubs from South of the Clyde that are coming to the fore.   Tommy Murray is a Greenock boy and Mark Pollard and Chris MacKay are two of a wonderful group of young distance runners at Inverclyde AAC coached by Lawrie Spence and Norrie Hay.    Mark has won the Scottish Cross-Country title twice already (2007, ’08) and Chris has been a close-up member of National winning teams.   These guys still have a lot to give the sport.   Ross Toole is an excellent young prospect from Kilbarchan who seem to specialise in whole dynasties of athletics talent – the Hawkins brothers are as famous as the three generations of the Toole family.    I’ll bring the results up-to-date but reserve the comments until January 2019!

Date Winner Club Time Distance
January 2010 Race Cancelled Snow &  Ice
January 2011 Chris MacKay Inverclyde AAC 22:43 4.64
January 2012 Stuart Gibson Cambuslang Harriers 23:55 4.64

 

It is a popular race and whatever its secret, lots of runners keep coming back and several have been multi-race winners.    Most prolific was Tommy Murray with four (1986, ’90, ’91 and 2001) as had Chris McKay of Inverclyde (2005, ’06, ’07 and possibly 2011), Chris MacKay (2005, ’06, ’07 and’11) and Lawrie Spence (1982. ’83, ’84 and ’85) with several on three each – Jim Flockhart (Shettleston) in 1934, ’35, ’36), Ian McCafferty (1964, ’66 and ’67) and Dick Wedlock (1969, ’70 and ’72) while on the women’s side Susan Finch (City of Glasgow) won three  in 2006, ’07, ’08 and Ann Ridley (McLaren City of Glasgow) in 1987, ’88 and ’89.

The Women’s Race 

 

Date Winner Club Time Distance   Date Winner Club Time Distance
January 1984 Carol Devlin   18:30 2.5   January 1999 Shona Hughes   29:04 4.64
January 1985 Marcella Robertson ESH 18:11 2.5   January 2000 Jill Cox-Knowles City of Glasgow 28:42 4.64
January 1986 ESH 25:54 4.5   January 2001 Ann Hay Greenock Glenpark Harriers 24:28 3.48
January 1987 Ann Ridley McLaren Glasgow 27:01 4.5   January 2002 D Sancil USA 23:47 3.48
January 1988 27:35 4.5   January 2003 Liz McGarry Irvine AC 24:34 3.48
January 1989 Elspeth Turner Glasgow AC 27:54 4.5   January 2004 Claire Gibson Kilbarchan AAC 27:51 4.64
January 1990 Ann Ridley 26:37 4.64   January 2005 Claire McCracken City of Glasgow 27:15 4.64
January 1991 Helen Morton Irvine 22:01 3.48   January 2006 Susan Finch City of Glasgow 27:54 4.64
January 1992 Lynne MacDougall City of Glasgow 25:34 4.64   January 2007 Susan Finch City of Glasgow 27:48 4.64
January 1993 S Kennedy Victoria Park 28:22 4.64   January 2008 Susan Finch City of Glasgow 28:04 4/64
January 1994 Sharon Hatch Irvine AC 13:09 4.64   January 2009 Kara Tait Kilmarnock HAC 29:45 4.64
January 1995       4.64   January 2010 Race Cancelled: Weather    
January 1996 Helen Morton Irvine AC 30:41 4.64   January 2011 Claire Whitehead Deeside Runners 28:01 4.64
January 1997 Jackie Byng Irvine AC 31:22 4.64   January 2012 Kara Tait Kilmarnock HAC 29:21  
January 1998 Alison Higgins JW Kilmarnock H 27:56 4.64            

As with the men, runners came from all over Scotland, and beyond in 2002.   From Aberdeen in the north to Edinburgh in the East, from Greenock in the West but mainly from the Glasgow area with no fewer than 11 of the 27 races heading for the conurbation.   Five from Irvine and three from Kilmarnock were the top clubs apart from that.   Olympian Lynne MacDougall’s outstanding time of 25:34 for the 4.64 mile trail was clearly the performance of the series although the weather at this time of year can have a lot to do with watch times!   Lynne was a real quality athlete with Scottish titles on the road, track and country and latterly as a marathon runner who only missed Games selection through injury.   She would add lustre to any list of race winners.   There are ,many well known names on this roster: Claire Gibson cruelly denied really major selections as an 800m track runner through unfortunate injuries at the wrong time, Marcella Robertson was also a well known orienteer as well as a top flight runner, Alison Higgins from Kilmarnock was a really good all round endurance runner who showed talent on the track and road as well as over the country.   Jill Knowles was the daughter of Hammy Cox of Greenock Glenpark and grand-daughter of Bertie, a well-known road runner in the 50’s and 60’s who was a class runner in her own right.   Many of the girls above could have won national cross-country titles but for the overwhelming dominance of Freya Murray who has won the Scottish Cross-Country Championship seven times in nine years!   Susan Finch, running at present as a veteran has best times of 17:25 and 36:30 for 5K and 10K on the roads and 10:22.8 for 3000m indoors; Ann Ridley who equals Susan’s three victories was one of the best cross-country runners of her generation, and won the Scottish Cross-Country title in 1990.   Elspeth Turner was a very good athlete who went on a scholarship to the University of Alabama and developed her talent even further – she has best times of 5000m on the track and 5K on the road of 16:11.09 and 18:25 and for 10000m track and 10K road of 33:05.43 and 37:43.   Kara Tait has a range of personal bests ranging from 64.3 for 400m to 36:47 for 10K on the road – and she is still only 25 years old.   All the women who have won the race in its short 28 years existence have been at least very good athletes at best of the very highest calibre.