Delight for Olympians as runners race home in top times

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TALENTED athletes from Kirkintilloch Olympians took to the grass and trails of Falkirk and Kincardine in two days of challenging racing.

On Saturday, at the national cross country championships in Callendar Park, Falkirk, there was a strong contingent of runners of all ages from the East Dunbartonshire club – with more than 40 taking part in the main cross country event in the national calendar.

In the junior races, Daniel Reilly (under-13 boys), Kerry Gallacher (under-13 girls), Aidan McCaffrey (under-15 boys), Victoria Robertson (under-15 girls) and Logan Sirel (under-17 men) were the top Olympians in each race, with the under-15 girls team narrowly missing out on a bronze medal.

In the senior races, Annmarie McCaffrey was the club’s first women home in 109th place overall and in the men’s race Stephen Allan was 110th out of the nearly 500 runners. The men’s team was 15th overall with Adrian Dow, Howard Elliott, Derek Martin, David Hogg and Gary Mitchell counting along with Stephen Allan.

The next day, in perfect running conditions, the club was well represented at the Devilla Forest train races. Held in the sometimes muddy trails behind Kincardine village, the races were over 5k and 15k.

Julie Nelson, Aidan Pugh, Colin Simpson, Pamela Parker, Vivien Fraser, John Pugh, Shirley MacNab and Robert Rogerson all took up the challenging of racing for the second day in a row after competing at the national cross country events the day before.

They were joined by seven other Olympians to form one of the largest teams present in the race (pictured above).

Aidan Pugh showed fine form to take fourth place in the 5k race and was first junior, winning the prize in this category.

In the 15k race, Euan Craig set a blistering pace to complete the course in under one hour and take 15th place overall.

A few minutes behind, Robert Rogerson secured a second place in M50 category to win the club’s second prize of the day.

Attention now turns to the road racing season and training is already well advanced for the several dozen Olympians who are competing in a marathon this spring.

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