The 2018-19 Merit League was well and truly kicked-off on Saturday 6th October at the George Cummings Road Relays. A short 2.7 mile loop in Houston awaited each relay runner and, with some gradients thrown in, it made for quite a testing full-gas run.

We fielded two full male teams plus half a male team (Chris & Kenny) as well as a full female team. Rory and Ryan were racing in club colours for the first time and Caroline stepped-in at the last moment to allow us to field a full female team. This was Caroline’s first competitive (short) race for quite a while and she had a great one – fantastic to see her out racing in blue again!

With it being a short race it was pretty much max. pace from the off and try to keep it going on the uphill gradients whilst saving something for the fast downhill which led into the last (flat) 80m to the finish. Sprint finish of the day (if not the year!) goes to Lochlann who out-sprinted Derek Hawkins and pipped him to the line, brilliant to witness. Irrespective that Derek was the anchor leg in the winning team (and we still had a leg to complete), a sprint’s a sprint! Well done Lochlann.

Elsewhere we all gave our best and delivered good times – quickest of the day was Rory at 14.56 which we reckon is the quickest by a Harrier in many a year. With individual times being close the Merit League is already shaping up to make for an interesting season ahead.

Post-race free soup by local pub The Fox & Hounds was much appreciated as was the spread of food afterwards at race HQ. Thanks go out to Kilbarchan AAC for organising the event plus all marshals out on the course.

The fastest male of the day was Euan Gillham (Kilbarchan AAC) in 12:41. 58 full male teams finished.
The fastest female was Elspeth Curran (Kilbarchan AAC) in 14:23. 30 full female teams finished.

69th Rory Clark 14.56
132nd Craig Perrie 16.02
144th Finn Boyd 16.12
153rd Andrew Stevenson 16.25
179th Scott Coulter 17.10
187th Ryan Gilhooley 17.30
194th Lochlann Henderson 17.40
228th James Prior 19.02
236th Kenny Henderson 20.05
238th Chris Hever 20.11

48th Lynsey Parker 18.59
89th Margaret Peebles 22.18
90th Caroline Hever 22.22

33rd Team A (Rory, Craig, Scott, Finn)
48th Team B (Andrew, Ryan, Lochlann, James)

28th Team A (Lynsey, Margaret, Caroline)

Photos on club Flickr page.

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