The third race in the Central Athletic Club’s 2019-20
Cross-Country Series was held in excellent conditions on Saturday 25 January at
Fintry Rugby Club. With good conditions underfoot the 1.5 kilometre course saw a
field of some 31 youngsters showcasing the local talent.
Connor Bell was again to the fore throughout to finish in
overall first place in 4 minutes 51 seconds and lead home the Under-15 Boys age
group ahead further gutsy runs from Euan Docherty (5:15)
and Ross Lawrie (5:37).
This was Catriona Kane’s first
race in this season’s Series and here she led home the Girls to finish as top Under-15
on the day with 5:41. Zosia Paddon has been an ever present so far in the
Series and was rewarded with her best placing as second Under-15 Girl (6:04)
while Scarlett Roy (6:26) also added to her reputation with third place in this
There was another good turnout of Under-13
Boys with Aaron Middleton (5:34) showing great form to lead ahead of an
improved run by Alex Dunlop (5:58). Fergus Young (6:01) again showed his
promise ahead of a good race between Logan Bell (6:49), Scott Hill (6:52) and
Conall Paterson (6:55) while newcomer Logan Paterson showed good determination
to finish with 7:53.
The Under-13 Girls age group again
proved to be competitive with Niamh McKinlay taking first with 6:15 closely
followed by another fine effort by Leah Brown (6:20), and a flying finish from
Emma Anderson (6:26). Loren Stewart (6:29) finished close-up while Robyn
McKerracher (6:54) showed further improvement.
Jake Drummond reversed previous
results to win the Under-11 Boys category with an excellent 6:06 and with
Finlay McGregor (6:11) and Joel Gillan (6:14) finishing in close order this is
turning into a very competitive age group. Cole Johnston (6:50) and Noah
McIntyre-Sim (7:24) proved the strength in depth of the Under-11 Boys.
Fia Watkin (6:26) was the pick of
the Under-11 Girls age group ahead of further strong runs from newcomer Lucy
Ronald (6:36) and Dara Clark (6:41). Ciara Middleton (6:57) had another good
run and Nora Thompson showed advancement with 8:08.
Jessica Walker led home the Under-9
category with a strong 8:04 run ahead of another fine effort from Summer
Johnston (8:09) and it was Zachary Walker who pushed into the rankings with his
8:22 effort in the Under-9 Boys race.
Thanks are again due to David Eckersley and Raymond Milne and the small army of helpers who provided another excellent event on behalf of Central Athletic Club. Full results below.
Central AC’s Senior Men took top honours at the final match
of the East District Cross Country League which was played out at Deans Country
Park in Livingston. Hamish Hickey enjoyed the almost perfect conditions to lead
a strong team to victory on the day, as they clinched the League title for the
As always the day commenced with the Under-11 races with
both the Girls and Boys facing 1.6 kilometre runs. There was some good packing
from Central’s Under-11 Boys with Finlay MacGregor
(23rd; 6 minutes 51 seconds), Jake Drummond (25th;
6:52) and Joel Gillan (26th; 6:53) and with
the essential back-up from Logan Bell (57th; 7:54) the boys finished as fifth
team on the day. Ciara Middleton was
the sole Central girl runner with a fine 29th place and a time of 7:38.
The Under-13 Girls and Boys had a full 3.2
kilometre lap of the course to negotiate. In the Boys race Aaron Middleton caught the eye in ninth (12:01) and
with further good runs from Joshua Kennedy (24th;
12:44), Henry Crossley (48th; 13:53) and Alex Dunlop (49th; 14:03) the Central team finished
in sixth place on the day and an excellent third placing for the season. For
the Girls, Leah Brown ran well to take 44th placing with 15:04.
Bell, fresh from his quality run the previous weekend, always looked in control
of the 4 kilometres Under-15 Boys race coming home for an emphatic victory with
13 minutes 39 seconds. Euan Docherty had another strong run to finish 21st (15:35).
For the combined Under-15 Girls and Under-17 Women’s race, a fourth team place
both on the day and over the season was achieved by some strong running by Summer McLean (12th; 16:28), Catriona Kane
(13th; 16:39), Mirren Henry (20th; 17:24), Anna McKinnon (23rd; 17:41), Zosia
Padden (33rd; 18:48), Leona Melville (40th; 19:32) and Heidi Eik-Maxwell (45th;
Grivell may have been the only Central Under-17 Man to tackle the 6.4 kilometre
two lap course but here showed continued improvement to finish in 13th with a
useful 24:38 timing.
It was Under-20 runner Hamish Hickey who showed his strength and confidence to become the latest Central AC athlete to win an East District League race, here completing the 9.6 kilometre, 3 lap course in 31 minutes 8 seconds. Alastair Hay again produced a sterling performance in fourth overall (31:30) and with back-up from Dale Colley (eighth; 31:53), Matthew Sutherland (11th; 32:12), Michael Wright (12th; 32:26) and Under-20 runner Ben MacMillan (13th; 32:28), Central again took team honours and lifted the Senior Men’s Team Trophy for the season.
The essential back-up came from the top two Masters runners on the day, Ross Houston (15th; 32:40) and Scott Brember (19th; 32:58), while there were further top performances from Robert Russell (25th; 33:29), Luca Fanottoli (26th; 33:34) and Under-20 Telfer Gray (36th; 34:12). David Eckersley (99th; 38:37) showed great concentration throughout to complete Central’s Masters team who gained second place, and led home more solid performances from Donald Shaw (103rd; 38:48), Alan Hume (120th; 39:49), Ross McNaught (129th; 40:14), Tal Edie (140th; 40:37), Iain Dunsmore (150th; 41:02) and Jens Subke (157th; 41:27). Charles Graham-Marr (169th; 42:08) stuck well to the task as did the remaining Central runners Hugh Buchanan (186th; 43:10), Colin Alexander (191st; 43:23), Roger Greenaway (211th; 45:21), Liam McCabe (218th; 46:17), Ben Noad (229th; 47:22), Allan Gall (243rd; 48:33), Colin Sinclair (251st; 49:46) and Cameron Campbell (257th; 50:17) as some 27 Central runners finished the Senior Men’s race making up a tenth of the total field.
In the Senior Women’s race
over 6.4 kilometres, Catriona Buchanan led her team in with a fine 13th place
display in 25:24, supported by Claire Houston (26th, 26:47), Mandy Williams (29th,
27:39), Hazel Dean (58th, 29:48) and Jane Waterhouse (104th, 32:49) with the
team finishing the season in 4th place.
Central Athletic Club were very much at the heart of events
on King’s Park, when Stirling hosted a series of Home Countries internationals,
mixed with the annual Scottish Inter-District Championship. As host club,
Central set and laid out the course and marshalled the event. Unfortunately, it
did not organise the weather with large amounts of standing water and mud on
the sports pitch section providing very heavy going. The golf course section
had fast but treacherous downhill sections with runners at any point in danger
of a mudslide.
Central athletes featured strongly at the front of the
Senior Men’s and Under-20 Men’s 8 kilometres race, with this the last race of
the day the underfoot conditions were challenging in the extreme. Andrew
Butchart and Jamie Crowe were both representing Scotland, as was Hamish Hickey
in the Under-23 category. There was further representation both in the Scotland
East team through Alastair Hay and Matthew Sutherland and in a number of local
runners wearing yellow and blue Central vests willing to face up to this tough
This race provided a great spectacle for the spectators who
braved the incessant rain, with Butchart and Crowe at the front running in a
four man group with Welsh runners Kristian Jones and James Hunt. The underfoot
mud and the tight turns on the course saw Jones and Butchart taking tumbles
with both recovering to race to the finish. The race unfolded on the final 2km
lap with Jones establishing a lead to take him to victory in 25 minutes 33 seconds,
a determined run from Crowe (25:43) rewarded with second place, Butchart (25:50)
just run out for third by the fast finish of England’s Adam Hickey (25:49), while
Hunt faded to fifth (26:10). There was further reward for Jamie and Andrew as
they led Scotland to overall victory from Wales and England – the first set of
gold medals for Scotland in this race for some years.
Hamish Hickey was representing the Scottish Under-23 team moving
up from his normal Under-20 level. Here Hamish’s talent shone through with
fourth place in the Under-23 race and 19th overall to record an excellent 27 minutes
exactly helping Scotland lift further team gold in the Celtic Cross Country
International. Scotland East representatives Alastair Hay (40th; 27:45) and
Matthew Sutherland (49th; 28:05) also tamed the conditions with the East well
ahead of their rival teams.
Amongst the club entries, Conan McCaughey wore the first of
the mud spattered Central vests to finish in 48th overall (27:56) ahead of
further good runs from Telfer Gray (93rd; 29:52) and Calum Phillip (99th; 30:13).
There was a determined run from Neil Ferrier (134th; 33:55), leading in Donald
Shaw (135th; 34:10), Andrew Irvine (136th; 34:22), Jens Subke (138th; 34:36),
Iain Dunsmore (141st; 36:09), Iain Elliott (142nd; 36:13), Colin Alexander (148th;
38:32) and Allan Gall (156th; 43:05).
The Under-13 Boys’ race featured Joshua Kennedy in the black
vest of Scotland East, his first run at this level. As expected Joshua coped
well with both the quality of the opposition and the deteriorating conditions
producing a strong effort in 39th overall, recording 13:20 over the 3km course
with the East taking silver team medals just one point behind the Scotland West
team. Jamie Connor put himself forward to challenge at this high level and
should be proud of his 72nd place overall and his 15:43 clocking.
Central were represented by Carys and Leah Gibb in the Girls’
Under-13 Scotland East team, and they ran strongly throughout with fine results
of 14:17, 27th and 14:37, 31st respectively.
Connor Bell was always to the fore in the Under-15 Boys race
over a 4 kilometre course only headed by Birtley AC’s runner Christopher
Perkins. Connor’s second place finish saw him lift individual gold as first
Scot home, and well clear, in the Inter-District race with a superb 13:51
effort, a brilliant outcome for someone in his first year in this age group. Indeed
Connor led home the Scotland East winning team, backed up by excellent runs
from fellow Central runners Cameron Kerr (10th; 14:17) and Cameron MacMillan
(18th; 14:50). In the Under-15 Girls’ race Summer McLean gave a fine account of
herself with her 20th place in 16:28 contributing to an East team that took the
The Under-20 Mens’ race was played out over a 7 kilometre
challenge getting the best of the underfoot conditions, and here Ben MacMillan
proved equal to the test finishing 24th with 25:26. Aidan Shea continued to
show progress in 29th (25:44) while Sandy Holl fought throughout to finish in
40th overall (28:00).
Central Athletic Club’s Ian Horsburgh started the year off
in style with a win in the 151st running of the traditional New Year Sprint Handicap
held at Musselburgh racecourse on 1 January 2020. Ian had proved his fitness
with a silver medal 200 Metre performance in the European Masters in the summer
of 2019, and had worked hard on his fitness through the autumn to come to the
event in fine form.
This was Ian’s third appearance in the final, the previous
two being over 20 years previously. Ian said “I ran really well as a junior,
especially at 400 Metres, but I then had injuries and didn’t progress. I had 13
years off and had children, but I found some energy to train again when the
kids started sleeping. I wanted to let them see me run rather than just telling
them about it.”
Doune-based athlete progressed through the heats on 30 December at Meadowmill
and looked to be on track for a good performance with a win in his cross-tie
earlier in the day at Musselburgh. Starting off 10.25 metres, the title
favourite caught club-mate and training partner Cameron Smith early on and held
off the remaining six finalists to win in 11.81 seconds to take the Eric
Liddell Trophy, gold medal and a cheque for £5,000. “I
knew I was catching Cameron and I stayed relaxed for the rest of the race, but
even when I crossed the line I wasn’t sure I’d won it until I heard my name
Cameron Smith had some significant compensation for his efforts
by not only taking fifth in the final but also winning the Veterans 90 Metres
at Meadowmill two days previously.
Central Athletic Club’s Christmas Handicap moved away from
its traditional evening slot to be held in daylight on Christmas Eve attracting
a field of 26 enthusiastic runners. This year it was Under-15 Girls Summer
MacLean and Mirren Henry who led into the finish with Summer prevailing by some
3 seconds from Mirren. Derek Easton’s handicapping produced further close
contests with Andrew Irvine in third overall just a further 2 seconds down
followed closely by Fiona Davies, Lauren McCulloch, Iain Dunsmore and last
year’s winner Jennifer Wetton, these all within touching distance of each other
at the finish.
Cameron Milne’s effort was rewarded with the day’s fastest
lap of 12:50 ahead of Under-20 runners Ben MacMillan with 12:57 and Sandy Holl (13:23).
Cameron Kerr has shown good progress recently and here the Under-15 ran a
classy 14:02. Jennifer Wetton proved to be the fastest female competitor with 14:29
while Under-20 Lauren McCulloch clocked an improved 14:41 with Hazel Dean also
improving to 18:11 and once again finishing as the top female veteran.
The second race in the Central Athletic Club’s 2019-20
Cross-Country Series was held in mild weather conditions on Saturday 21
December in the Laigh Hills Park, Dunblane. A testing course of some 1.5 kilometres
saw a field of almost 40 youngsters taking time out from Christmas celebrations
to complete the challenge.
Connor Bell showed his quality throughout the race to finish
in overall first place in 4 minutes 47 seconds to lead home the Under-15 Boys
age group ahead of another strong run from Euan
Docherty (5:11) in second place overall.
Summer MacLean showed her
continuing progress and confidence to win the Under-15 Girls category in 5:38 followed
in by another good effort from Leona Melville (6:05). This well subscribed age
group saw further gritty performances from Zosia Paddon (6:20), Anna Buchanan
and Scarlett Roy, finishing together in 6:47, ahead of Brogan MacMillan (7:21).
There was a strong turnout of Under-13
Boys with Aaron Middleton leading home this age group with a fine 5:49 clocking
ahead of more useful runs from Fergus Young (6:12) and Jamie Connor (6:26),
just a few strides ahead of Connor Carr (6:27). Logan Bell stuck well to the
task to finish in 6:54 leading in more determined efforts from Conall Paterson
(7:07), Lewis Rodger (7:22) and Scott Hill (8:11).
The Under-13 Girls age group also
proved to be competitive led in by Niamh McKinlay with a fine 6:28 effort ahead
of Leah Brown (6:37), Emma Anderson (6:44), Robyn McKerracher (7:19) and Amelie
Blair (9:02) with all girls passing the test with flying colours.
Joel Gillan was the fastest of the
Under-11 Boys on show with an improved 6:20 effort just heading further fine
efforts from Jake Drummond (6:21) and Finlay McGregor (6:27). Cole Johnston
should be pleased with his 6:46 effort as should Ben Roberts (6:59) and Noah
Fia Watkin (6:39) showed her class
to win the Under-11 Girls age group ahead of more excellent efforts from Dara
Clark (6:47), Ciara Middleton (6:54) and Sienna Melville (6:55). Katy Buchanan
(8:48), Hannah Whelan (8:52) and Nora Thompson (9:24) provided a string of
In the Under-9 category Makenna
Melville (7:13) headed in the girls through Eilidh Connor (8:25) and Summer
Johnston (8:44), and Grant Rodger’s effort of 7:30 won the boys race, all
running with great enthusiasm and endeavour.
Thanks are again due to Derek Easton, Raymond Milne, David Eckersley, and the small army of helpers who provided another excellent event on behalf of Central Athletic Club.
Central’s Andrew Butchart tasted GB success as he led the British Senior Men’s team to gold in the European Cross Country Championships in Lisbon.
Andrew made a significant personal contribution to the team victory for the British Senior Men. He started conservatively and worked his way through the field to be in the hunt for an individual podium place until the latter stages – but ultimately had to settle for fifth place, covering the demanding 10.25 kilometre course in 30 minutes 38 seconds. Andrew led his team home to the championship win by just two points from Belgium, with 36 points to 38, as Spain took the bronze medals.
Central AC’s honours list from the annual East District
Cross Country Championships continued to grow with four individual wins and a
fine array of team championship medals. A new course at the Piperdam leisure
resort near Dundee proved a testing environment for the club’s athletes with a
total of three golds, one silver and one bronze in the team rankings to top the
unofficial medal table for the event. For individuals, the event was also the
trials for the East District teams for the annual inter-district championships
taking place at Stirling’s King’s Park as part of the Run Stirling event on 11 January.
The Senior Men’s race saw Jamie Crowe surging to the front from the gun to establish an early lead which he extended on each of the three laps making up the 8.6 kilometre course to lift a well-deserved gold medal in emphatic fashion in 27 minutes 10 seconds, once again proving his class with a win of over 30 seconds.
Ross Houston was making his debut as a Masters’ athlete (Over-40) and came home in 13th place overall (29:09) to take the Masters’ gold some 26 years after first featuring in the Under-15 medal listing. Scott Brember’s solid run in 19th (29:35) was rewarded with the Masters’ silver medal, and with back-up from Matthew Sutherland (21st; 29:37), Dale Colley (23rd; 29:43) and Chris Smithard (26th; 29:50), Central took the Senior Men’s team silver medals, with Corstorphine AAC winning gold. A rejuvenated Luca Fanettoli came home in 28th with 30:13, leading in a large number of Central runners including Will Hensman (67th; 32:24), David Eckersley (124th; 35:00), Andrew Irvine (127th; 35:02), Donald Shaw (135th; 35:22), Charles Graham-Marr (162nd; 36:55), Iain Dunsmore (165th; 37:12), Ben Noad (181st; 38:06), Neil Cobb (198th; 39:02), Colin Alexander (208th; 39:33), Colin Sinclair (242nd; 44:42) and Cameron Campbell (249th; 45:46). Central’s team of Ross Houston, Scott Brember and Will Hensman lifted the Masters’ title for the first time in Central history, and Jamie Crowe’s third consecutive win in this event was his compensation for having narrowly missed out on European Cross Country selection.
The Under-20 Men’s race, over 6.4 kilometres, saw Central’s Hamish
Hickey improve on last year’s bronze medal with a resounding victory in 20 minutes
51 seconds. Tom Graham-Marr showed his talent to take bronze with 21:30 and
with superb back-up by Aidan Shea (seventh, 22:09), Central’s Under-20 Men came
home with team gold medals.
Central’s Senior Women were running the same course as the Senior
Men and a team of four took fifth place in another packed and competitive
field. Morag Millar led Central’s runners in with tenth place in 34:37 followed
by Claire Houston (30th; 37:22), Kirsten McStay (41st; 39:36) and Hazel Dean (45th;
For the Under-20 Women’s race, Lauren McCulloch ran her best
race of the season with a great performance against top opposition to take the bronze
medal with a 25:05 timing over the 6.4 kilometres.
Sam Grivell was Central’s sole competitor in the Under-17
Men’s race over a 5.7 kilometre course and continued to show improvement
finishing a highly commendable 19th in 21:16.
Grace Tindall continues to produce ever more mature
performances and she gained automatic selection for the East District team with
a top class sixth place in the Under-17 Women’s race with 23:02.
The Under-15 Boys tackled a 4.2 kilometre challenge and here
Connor Bell proved to be the top runner in the field with a fine win in 14 minutes
2 seconds, a superb run as a first year Under-15, having won Under-13 gold in
2018. Back-up came from further excellent performances from Cameron Kerr
(fourth; 14:47) and Cameron MacMillan (seventh; 14:55) to see the three Central
runners lift team gold medals. Euan Docherty again looked strong in finishing
36th (16:30), as did the remaining Central boys Ruaridh Burns (44th; 16:49) and
Ross Lawrie (59th; 18:09).
A strong squad of Under-15 Girls claimed bronze team medals. Summer McLean led the team in with a fine ninth place (16:47) and will have to wait to see whether she gets selection for the East District team. Amy Cully (15th, 17:14), Mirren Henry (18th, 17:36), Catriona Kane (30th, 19:06), Anna McKinnon (31st, 19:26) and Zosia Padden (40th, 20:21) showed the club has fine prospects in this age group.
The Under-13 Boys faced a 3.2 kilometre course and Joshua Kennedy caught the eye in eighth (12:01), leading in further highly competent efforts from Aaron Middleton (20th; 12:28), Alex Dunlop (42nd; 13:22) and Henry Crossley (44th; 13:25) as the boys proved that the green shoots of development are bearing fruit.
For Under-13 Girls, Carys Gibb led her team to fifth team place,
just missing automatic selection with her ninth race position in 13:22, and was
closely followed in by sister Leya Gibb (16th, 13:40) and Niamh McKinlay (30th,
Katherine Fowler and Scott Hopper were all on international duty at the Schools
Pentathlon International at the Emirates Arena on Saturday. The Central AC trio
were representing Scotland as they took on top-class teams of all-round
athletes from Ireland, Wales and England.
Erik Escala of Dunblane High School was initially selected as a reserve, but the 17-year-old received a call-up to the Over-16 Boys the day before the event to take his place in the starting line-up. This was Erik’s second international appearance after representing Scotland at the schools’ track and field international in July. He had a storming start in the 60 Metres Hurdles to run a personal best 8.67 seconds, knocking 0.5s off his previous mark, for ninth overall. He followed this with another personal best in his strongest event, the Shot Put, adding a metre to his previous mark with a huge throw of 13.53 metres to land fifth place. He then produced another excellent performance in the 200 Metres, fighting the Welsh athlete all the way to the finish, finishing a narrow second but rewarded with another big personal best 23.33s. This was a dream start for Erik and saw him move into third place overall. In the Long Jump, Erik set another personal best 5.90m, however with several other athletes well over 6 metres he slipped to sixth place. He finally lined up in the last heat of the 800 Metres with the main medal contenders and committed completely in the opening two laps, reaching 400m in 62 seconds, but was unable to keep up the momentum and finished in 2:17.34. This was yet another personal best making a clean sweep of five. He finished with an overall score of 3,327 points, adding over 300 points to his previous best score. His final position was ninth, an excellent result in a quality field of 16 international athletes, particularly given his late call-up. Ireland produced strong performances to win overall and England managed to edge Scotland out for second place, but the Scots were still well ahead of Wales meaning a bronze medal with his Scottish teammates as third placed team. Erik will next target the UK Under-20 Heptathlon championships in Sheffield in January.
Katherine Fowler of McLaren High School was making her international debut in the Under-16 Girls after earning her place by winning bronze in the Scottish Schools Pentathlon in June. The Callander teenager had extra cause to celebrate as the match coincided with her birthday. Katherine started well in the Long Jump, with 4.92m for fourth place. She followed this with a superb run in the 60 Metres Hurdles as she smashed her personal best by over a second with 9.49s which lifted her to a lofty fifth place. She cleared 1.44m at the High Jump and threw 7.79m in the Shot Put, both respectable performances, but in a close competition against top class athletes this saw her slip to 11th place. The medal positions were now out of reach but Katherine still ran her heart out in the final 800 Metres and was rewarded with a personal best 2:31.95 to place second in her heat behind a Scottish teammate. These performances combined to give Katherine ninth place with an excellent personal best score of 2,954 points to finish third of the Scottish team and to beat athletes from each of the other teams. This was a very respectable finish on her international debut and bodes well for the future.
Scott Hopper of McLaren High School was also representing Scotland for the first time ever. After a personal best 9.63s in the 60 Metres Hurdles and a near personal best 5.34m in Long Jump, Scott unfortunately hurt his knee in the 200 Metres forcing him to withdraw. We wish him all the best in his recovery.
The first race in the Central Athletic Club’s 2019-20 cross country series was held on Saturday 30 November in frosty conditions with bright sunshine, on a flat course of some 2 kilometres at Airthrey Castle, Stirling University with a field of 27 runners braving the cold conditions.
Euan Docherty’s strong running
brought him home in first place with a tasty 7 minutes 22 seconds, leading home
fellow Under-15 Ross Lawrie who showed continued improvement with 7:56. Joshua
Kennedy also looked in good form as he led home the Under-13 Boys with 7:32
ahead of Aaron Middleton’s fine effort of 7:48. There were further
noteworthy performances from the Under-13 Boys through Alex Dunlop (8:12),
Fergus Young (8:18), Jamie Connor (8:50), Conall Paterson (9:40) and Scott Hill
(10:05). Finlay MacGregor (9:10) proved to be the
class of the Under-11 Boys race with Oscar Underwood (10:48), Arthur Carrie (10:57)
and Gabriel Stewart (11:40) all laying down targets for the future.
Amongst the girls it was Under-15
runner Amy Cully who led the pack home with a gutsy 7:45 performance ahead of
further strong runs from Summer MacLean (7:53), Leona Melville (8:23), Zosia
Paddon (8:42), Tara Mathewson (9:05) and Scarlett Roy (9:17). Loren Stewart’s
fine effort (8:47) saw her at the head of the Under-13 Girls with Niamh
McKinlay (8:52) producing another strong challenge in this age group, as did
Emma Anderson (9:18). Dara Clark should be pleased with her 9:24 effort to lead
the Under-11 Girls to the finish ahead of another fine effort by Ciara
Middleton (10:10). The three Under-9 Girls were not daunted by the cold weather
or their older opponents and finished closely together with Eilidh Connor (11:25)
taking the honours ahead of Hannah Cowley (11:36) and Jessica Walker (11:56).
Thanks are due to Derek Easton, Raymond Milne and indeed all
the helpers who made this another successful event.
Central AC had a busy weekend both on the country and the award stage: two athletes excelling in the UK cross country trials in Liverpool, and the club winning the Off-Track Club of the Year title at the annual Scottish Athletics awards dinner. Showing how that award was worthy was down to the club at the second match of the East of Scotland Cross Country League at a dreich Broxburn where the Senior Men took top team slot.
Central’s Senior Men were well supported with another top class run by Alastair Hay in sixth, covering the 8.1 kilometre, three lap course in 28 minutes 10 seconds, followed in by Matthew Sutherland in seventh with a strong run of 28:19. Ross Houston’s return helped the team performance, finishing in 28:42 for 11th heading in the overall first Master runner Scott Brember, in 12th overall (28:50). Robert Russell made an all too infrequent appearance to finish 18th (29:29) while Luca Fanottoli rounded off Central’s scoring six in 20th with 29:37. Telfer Gray was the first of Central’s Under-20 runners (24th; 29:42) in third Junior spot while another Under-20, Aiden Shea, showed his value to the team finishing 47th (31:00). Will Hensman led home the remainder of the Master’s runners (64th; 31:56) while Donald Shaw (118th; 34:16) put in another strong performance ahead of Alan Hume (123rd; 34:30), Jens Subke (135th; 35:15), and Ian Dunsmore (152nd; 36:26). Talat Aidi stuck to the task well in 168th with 37:01 as did the remainder of Central’s runners Charles Graham-Marr (172nd; 37:10), Ben Noad (178th; 37:38), Liam McCabe (223rd; 41:50) and Allan Gall (237th; 43:25).
It was a happy return to racing from a spell off with injury
for Morag Millar, who put in a good run for second place with her 21:40 timing
over two laps and 5.4 kilometres. Lauren McCulloch was also pleased to put in a
strong race with her fifth place in 22:02. The squad effort was completed by Claire
Houston (30th, 23:45), Mandy Williams (35th, 24:26) and Hazel Dean (48th, 25:35)
with the team finishing in fourth place.
The combined Under-15/Under-17 Girls’ race over 4.1
kilometres featured another strong squad. Grace Tindall produced a top class
performance with her sixth place in 16:38, Summer Maclean continued to show
promise with tenth in 16:50 followed by strong showings throughout by Amy Cully
(14th, 17:06), Mirren Henry (18th, 17:16), Catriona Kane (23rd, 17:42), Anna
MacKinnon (26th, 17:49), Heidi Eik-Maxwell (47th, 19:46) and Zosia Padden (50th,
19:53) enabled the squad to take second team placing.
Sam Grivell was Central’s sole runner in the Under-17 Men’s
race and did well to finish in the top half of the race in 13th recording 20:58
for his 5.4 kilometre challenge.
Connor Bell was always to the fore in the Under-15 Boys race
over 4.1 kilometres finishing second in 14 minutes 10 seconds, a remarkable run
as Connor has another full year in this age group. Ruairidh Burns again ran
strongly (43rd, 17:16) while Ross Lawrie showed improved form (50th, 17:52)
with back-up from Douglas Fleming (64th, 22:07).
In the Under-13 Girls’ race, Niamh McKinlay (36th, 12:25)
and Leah Brown (44th, 12:44) ran creditable races and in the Under-11 Girls Dara
Clark (19th, 6:32), Fia Watkin (21st, 6:36) and Ciara Middleton (33rd, 6:57)
produced a great performance to finish seventh team. The Under-13 Boys ran the
same 2.7 kilometre course as the Under-13 Girls and here finished first team
through Joshua Kennedy (6th, 10:19), Aaron Middleton (9th, 10:22), and Jamie
Oldham (19th, 10:53). Back-up here came from Jack Sutton (40th; 11:40), Alex
Dunlop (43rd, 11:47), Jamie Connor (61st, 12:21) and Logan Bell (77th, 14:07). The
Under-11 Boys finished seventh team through the efforts of Finlay MacGregor (24th,
5:57), Joel Gillan (29th, 6:09), Jake Drummond (39th, 6:09) and Gabriel Stewart
(72nd, 8:07) over a 1.5 kilometre challenge.
The UK trials for the forthcoming in European Championships in Lisbon were held as part of the UK Cross Country Challenge in Liverpool. Hamish Hickey finished in eighth place at Men’s Under-20 race and Jamie Crowe took fifth place in the Senior Men’s race (eighth place overall but three eligible for the Under-23 team ahead) and both will await selection decisions. Cameron Kerr ran in the Under-15 Boys‘ race coming home in a more than worthy 30th place in a field of over 150 runners.
Central AC had three runners in a 70 strong Scottish team
taking on all three home countries and the Republic of Ireland in the annual
British and Irish Masters International Cross Country match over the flat
racecourse setting of Aintree.
Scott Brember took a silver medal in the M45 race with 25:54 over the 8 kilometre racecourse circuit. Jane Waterhouse also won an individual silver individual medal in the W65 race with her 27:36 6 kilometre timing, which also brought gold team medals. This was just one of two sets of golds won by the Scottish squad from the 17 race categories. David Eckersley took on the M55 category with 14th place in 31:34.
Central AC senior men continued their winning
ways at the Scottish Short Course Cross Country Championships over a fast 4
kilometre course in Kirkcaldy. Andrew Butchart took his third title at this
short distance, to add to the two over the long course championships and led
home a winning Central team with the club’s newest young seniors well to the
Andrew’s post-race interview gave a flavour of the race. ‘I thoroughly enjoyed it and it’s always good to claim a Scottish championship title,’ said Butchart. ‘If that’s five individual golds in cross country then I’m very pleased with that given I’m much more of a track runner now. But my roots were in cross country and I still love it. The mud today made it a bit harder for me than it might have been – I think when the surface is as soft as that it maybe suits others better than me. It was a good race. At one stage I heard the crowd cheering people and realised those behind me were not too far away. I felt the first lap would be quicker and that’s what happened and I put in a bit of a surge to get ahead.’
Andrew finished with a time of 11 minutes 54 seconds and always
looked in control over a small set of serious contenders. One of those pressing
Andrew was clubmate Jamie Crowe finishing in a close-up fourth place in 12:02 with
an individual medal just out of reach. Central were once again the winning team
through the efforts of Under-20 runners Hamish Hickey (16th; 12:34) and Ben MacMillan
(30th; 12:52) with Hamish taking second Under-20 spot. There was further proof
of the health of the Club’s future as another Under-20, Tom Graham-Marr came
through in 32nd place with 12:54.
Club stalwart Michael Wright mastered the mud in 48th place (13:12) and
there were further signs of progress from Under-20, Telfer Gray (13:29). It was
good to see Scott Brember getting his competition year back on track as the
fastest in his Masters age group and overall 69th, also with 13:29. Under-20s Sandy
Holl (85th; 13:40) and Aidan Shea (90th; 13:43) put in solid performances in
this highly competitive race, as did Fraser Logan (91st; 13:44). Kier Howlieson
(Under-20) has been missing from recent competition but here showed good form
with a tasty performance in 145th with 14:26.
As what seemed like an never ending stream of runners crossed the finish
line there were more than worthy efforts from David Eckersley (218th; 15:22), Under-20
Sam Burton (236th; 15:36), Charles Graham-Marr (261st; 16:04), Iain Dunsmore
(288th, 16:23), Ben Noad (337th; 17:22) and Colin Alexander (358th; 17:45).
Central’s Under-15 Boys faced a one lap challenge of 2 kilometres over
the undulating course and here Central’s Connor Bell again caught the eye with
a superb run to claim an individual bronze in a frenzied race to the line. Connor
is a first year Under-15 so his 6 minutes 18 seconds showing gives a flavour of
what could still be to come. There was also praise for Cameron Kerr’s sixth
place run in 6:22 as Cameron underlined his quality start to the season. Euan
Docherty and Ruairidh Burns both looked strong as they finished together with
both recording 7:09 in 59th and 60th respectively as the Boys finished a fifth
team in this age group.
Claire Houston was again Central’s first finisher in the senior women’s race over 4 kilometres with 16:28 for 70th , Trish Milne was 114th in 17:39, Under-20 Elizabeth Thompson was 130th (18:05) and Jane Waterhouse was 172nd (19:18), just outside medals in fourth in her Over-60 category, all in a field of 251 finishers.
A strong contingent of Under-15 Girls had the same 2 kilometre fast
track as the boys, with Amy Cully (15th; 7:37) showing the fastest set of heels
from the Central team, ably backed up by Mirren Henry (32nd; 7:48), Melissa
Turnbull (37th; 7:53), Anna McKinnon (46th, 8:04), Leona Melville (54th; 8:15),
Zosia Padden (57th; 8:20), Anna Buchanan (59th; 8:21) and Scarlett Roy (68th; 8:44)
to finish seventh team in a highly competitive race.
Central AC brought home a full set of gold-silver-bronze
medals from the National Cross Country Relay Championships, with the Senior Men’s
record-breaking seventh title in eight years winning justified plaudits for the
performances over the hills of Cumbernauld Park.
The challenge facing Central AC Senior Men was to step to
the top of the podium with other top line-up clubs and athletes desperate to
cause an upset in the four leg cross country relay over legs of 4km. Cameron
Milne was given first leg duties and a well-judged effort of 12 minutes 12
seconds saw Cameron hand over in second place some 4 seconds down on Glasgow
University Hares and Hounds. Conan McCaughey ran a nip and tuck battle first
taking and then losing the lead with his solid leg of 12:47 to keep Central in
second, handing over slightly down on the University Club and chased by Johnny
Glen (11:51) who ran the fastest leg of the day to bring strong rivals,
Inverclyde AC, into third while Kilbarchan AAC had moved through to fourth.
The third leg saw Central’s Alastair Hay pitted against
Kilbarchan’s Olympian Callum Hawkins. While Alastair moved Central through to
first with a 12:19 leg Callum brought Kilbarchan into second, but crucially
only pulling in some six seconds on Alastair to give Central a 14 second
cushion. Jamie Crowe had proven his form in recent weeks and here his storming
11:59 effort extended Central’s winning margin to 44 seconds over Kilbarchan
with Inverclyde in third a further 16 seconds further down.
It was great to see some eleven athletes supporting the Central
AC Boys relay teams but disappointing not to have any Under-17s in an Under-13,
Under-15 and Under-17 format over three 2.5km legs. Central’s silver medals
from 2018 were going to be hard to match but Under-13 Aaron Middleton set off
with true resolve and had Central in a close-up ninth at the end of the first
leg with a more than handy 9:49 clocking. Under-15 Connor Bell moved through the
field with a superb second leg, to bring Central into second with an excellent 8:41.
It was left to another Under-15, Cameron Kerr to finish Central’s challenge and
here Cameron ran a well-judged 8:51 leg against his older rivals, to bring the
team a set of bronze medals.
The remaining Central Boys teams, as expected, showed
excellent determination throughout and the ‘B’ team of Joshua Kennedy (9:51), Alex
Dunlop (11:12) and Euan Docherty (9:55) held their own well to finish 53rd in a
large field of Clubs. There was more commitment from the ‘C’ team through Jamie
Connor (12:02), Ruairidh Burns (9:49) and Ross Lawrie (11:35) to finish 83rd. The
final Central team was incomplete but here Henry Crossley (11:01) and Jamie
Oldham (10:25) were in 66th position at the end of their stint.
It was a massive compliment to the strength in depth of Central Men’s teams to see the ‘B’ and ‘C’ teams finish in sixth and thirteenth overall. The ‘B’ team of Matthew Sutherland (12:55), first year Under-20 runner Ben MacMillan (12:53), Hamish Hickey (12:31) and Michael Wright (12:54) came through the field well. The ‘C’ team held their early position well through Dale Colley (13:00), Fraser Logan (13:36), Aiden Shea (13:31) and Under-20 runner Tom Graham-Marr (12:42) to prove the club is ready for the cross country season ahead.
There was further determination from Central’s Masters team
of Jens Subke (16:03), Donald Shaw (15:46), Will Hensman (14:44) and Euan Jack
(14:21) with the team finishing 68th team overall and eleventh Masters Team
There was more true grit from a further Masters team of
David Eckersley (15:00), Hugh Kerr (16:46), Charles Graham-Marr (16:41) and
Stuart Watson (17:51) finishing 83rd team overall and sixteenth in the Masters
competition. Iain Dunsmore (16:14) led off yet another Masters team including
Hugh Buchanan (16:57), Colin Alexander (17:52) and Colin Sinclair (19:04) with
the team in 102nd place at the finish and twenty-second Masters team. Allan
Gall was on first leg duty for Central’s Over-50 team that finished twenty
fifth in that competitive category through further strong efforts from John
Millar (22:14), Cameron Campbell (19:27) and Liam McCabe (18:38). An incomplete
team of David Lindsay (14:44), Ben Noad (17:29) and Neil Cobb (18:03) were in
111th place at the end of their effort. All of these runners showing the can-do
attitude fostered by Coach Derek Easton and once again showing a great approach
to distance running.
After 15 years with interests at the sharp end of the race,
the Senior Women’s squad riven by unavailability and injury and then two last-minute
illness withdrawals, but Central’s Women’s re-built A team put on a good show. Natalie
Stewart led off the team with a strong and steady 17:19, Claire Houston as the
only pre-selected team member put in a storming run of 16:18 to move the team
forward to 29th, Kirsten McStay kept the forward progress going with 17:37 and
24th place and Amy Hendry brought the team home in 21st place with her strong
run of 17:03.
For the Central B team, Heather Scott led off (18:29), passing
on to Julia McAfee (18:36), Becky Hay (18:42) and Elizabeth Thompson (18:06) to
bring team to 34th.
Central’s three-leg Over-50 team was led away by Hazel Dean whose
18:17 timing had them into fourth place, Jane Waterhouse held that position
with her 19:22 and Trish Milne put in a spirited 17:21 to bring the team
forward initially into bronze and then to silver medal position. Alison Curry
(23:11) had a solo run as her team mates were moved up into replacement slots
The Girls race had the same course and team mix as the Boys races and a large contingent ran strongly in a packed field. In the first Central team home, Carys Gibb (11:00), Amy Cully (10:35) and Carrie Banks (10:26) all ran with spirit to finish 15th overall with Leah Gibb (11:13) Sumer Maclean (10:38) and Kyra Gibb (10:34) in the next Central team close behind in 21st place. Niamh McKinlay (11:21), Mirren Henry (11:14) and Grace Tindall (10:29) were closely matched as the next Central team in 28th place. Loren Stewart (12:14), Melissa Turnbull (11:01) and Naomi Howlieson (11:55) were 48th place, and Leah Brown (12:17), Mary Kealey (13:01) and Anna MacKinnon (11:12) were 63rd team, with important mentions for Scarlett Roy (12:15), Leona Melville (11:38), Zosia Padden (12:13) and Anna Buchanan (12:07) who ran in incomplete teams.
Central AC hosted the
first match of the East of Scotland Cross Country League on a tough Stirling
University course that showed off the diversity of campus. The series of races was
finished off by the biggest field of the day, when Central came good with a
fine team win and four runners in the top five providing the best home result of
This Senior and
Junior Men’s race over a three lap 9 kilometre course saw Andrew Butchart make
a welcome return to some grass roots competition, following his World
Championship run in Doha, storming into an early lead which he extended on each
lap to win in an excellent 28 minutes 8 seconds. Jamie Crowe followed as close
in Andrew’s heels as he could and finished in second with a tasty 28:28 clocking
while Alastair Hay also ran strongly throughout for a fine third place (29:21).
It might have been four from four if Central’s Under-20 runner, Hamish Hickey,
had not fallen on the final lap, recovering to finish fifth (29:38), and finishing
first Under-20. Matthew Sutherland also impressed in twelfth with 30:23 while
Club stalwart Michael Wright had another fine effort in 14th (30:46) as the
Senior Men finished first team on the day, well ahead of their closest rivals,
Edinburgh University Hare and Hounds. Under-20 runners Ben MacMillan (15th; 30:50),
Aidan Shea (20th; 31:34) and Telfer Gray (22nd; 31:46) underlined the potential
for the future of the Club with more quality efforts. Fraser Logan battled
through in 31st (32:14) leading in Will Hensman (73rd; 34:31) and David Lindsay
(110th; 36:47). There were further fine runs from Allan Hume (129th; 37:15), Donald Shaw
(134th; 37:24), Neil Ferrier (165th; 39:11), Iain Dunsmore (188th; 40:08), Gordon
Appelbe (194th; 40:37), Hugh Buchanan (196th; 40:50), Ben Noad (216th; 41:58), Colin
Alexander (227th; 43:19) and Allan Gall (248th; 44:55).
Central’s Senior Women’s team took
on a tough two lap 6km challenge and were pleased with a fourth placed team
finish. Claire Houston led the team home with a strong 20th place in 25:32,
with Kirsten McStay (32nd, 27:52), Heather Scott (38th, 28:21), Julia McAfee (42nd,
28:54) and Jane Waterhouse (57th, 30:10) all well placed in a field with 107
The Under-11 races
featured one lap of 1,650 metres and here it was Joel Gillan who led home
Central’s efforts in 23rd place in 7 minutes 1 second followed in by Max
Godsman in 27th
with 7:15, a great experience for both boys. For Under-11 Girls, Central was
well represented by Dara Clark who gave a great account of herself with
17th in 7:26, well backed within a close finishing race by Ciara Middleton 27th
The Under-13 runners were faced with a single tough lap of 2,400 metres and in the Boys race Aaron Middleton showed good early season form to finish fifth in 10:24 and, with back-up from Joshua Kennedy (11th; 10:33), Fergus Young (45th; 12:04) and Henry Crossley (55th; 12:26), the Club finished fourth team. Central’s Under-13 Girls had a strong team that achieved third team place through some strong running by sisters Carys and Leah Gibb in 10th and 13th (11:42, 11:48) and then Niamh McKinlay (27th, 12:20), Leah Brown (42nd, 13:08) and Isla Henry (58th, 14:25).
Central’s Under-15 Boys made an impact in their 3.3 kilometre challenge with Cameron Kerr backing up his fine run from the previous week in fourth (11:18) while Euan Docherty came through in 23rd (12:31), Euan Campbell in 39th (13:33) and Finlay McAndrew in 53rd (15:10) with the Under-15 Boys finishing fifth team overall. The combined Under-15/17 Girls race covered the same 3.3 km with a team of six from Central. A club trio led this team in with a few personal battles, and it finished with Amy Cully (22nd, 13:30), Kyra Gibb (23rd, 13:31) and Summer McLean (24th, 13:36) all pushing each other to the line. This trio were well backed up by Mirren Henry (31st, 13:57), Anna MacKinnon (34th, 14:04), Scarlett Roy (63rd, 15:56), Naomi Howlieson (67th, 16:01) and Brogan McMillan (70th, 16:22).
edition of the East of Scotland Cross Country Relays were played out in bright
sunshine on a testing course in Deans Country Park, Livingston on Saturday 12
October. There was great endeavour from all of Central Athletic Club’s athletes
but it was late in the day before this was rewarded with Championship medals
and it was Central’s Men’s Team of Ben MacMillan, Michael Wright, Jamie Crowe
and Alastair Hay who picked up the silver medals in their event.
race consisted of four legs of 4 kilometres with Under-20 runner Ben MacMillan
on the first leg, bringing the team through in third position, covering the
course in 12 minutes 58 seconds, the fastest by an Under-20 runner on the day. Michael’s
fine 13:02 effort on the second leg brought the team through into second place
but some 34 seconds down on what looked like an extremely competent Edinburgh
University Hare and Hounds team. Jamie Crowe soon made inroads into the deficit
with the fastest individual leg of the day (12:12) to finish his effort just 2
seconds down and setting up the final leg to be a real battle for gold and
silver medals. Alastair Hay put in a fine effort on the final leg, indeed
recording the 12th fastest time of the day with 12:55, but had to give way to
an excellent run from the Edinburgh University team who won by 17 seconds after
some 51 minutes of running.
had started with the young athletes’ relays following a three leg format of an Under-13,
followed by an Under-15 and completed by an Under-17, each running 2.5 kilometres.
The two Central Girls teams finished in the centre of the field but this didn’t
tell the whole story with Carys Gibb bringing the ‘A’ team round in ninth place
with a fine 10 minutes 46 seconds effort. Scarlett Roy put in a solid
performance of 12:15 bringing her team round in 19th while Carrie Banks (10:23)
had the opportunity to pass some of her rivals to finish in 15th overall. Leya
Gibb also made a strong start of 11:04 for Central’s ‘B’ team in 16th place. Brogan
MacMillan’s 12:13 contribution brought the team into 20th place while Kyra
Gibb’s final lap (10:21) ensured a 16th place finish, just 14 seconds behind
Central’s ‘A’ team and Kyra recording the eighth fastest Under-17 time of the
day with Carrie as tenth fastest.
also an encouraging turnout of Central’s Boys with the ‘A’ team comprising Under-13
Aaron Middleton (9:27), backed up by another Under-13 Jamie Connor (11:39) and
completed by Under-15 Cameron Kerr (8:55), with Jamie and Cameron both running
up an age group, so a real test of stamina and character. Although the team
finished 17th, Aaron was the third fastest Under-13 on the day and Cameron the
fourth fastest Under-15. The ‘B’ team of Joshua Kennedy (9:32), Owen Eckersley
(11:11) and Euan Docherty (9:39) – another Under-15 competing in the Under-17
leg – finished 22nd overall. The Central ‘C’ team of Henry Crossley (11:02) and
Douglas Fleming (11:53) didn’t have a final leg runner to complete the race and
were in 33rd place at the end of their effort. It is fair to say that all of
the Girls and Boys proved their training was heading in the right direction to
enjoy the forthcoming Cross Country Season.
Women raced over three legs of the same 4 kilometre course as the Men and here
we saw Under-20 runner Lauren McCulloch bring Central’s ‘A’ team to the first
changeover in ninth with a tasty 15:46 clocking. Claire Waterhouse had only
been promoted to the ‘A’ team on the morning and shouldered her responsibility admirably
with a 16:47 leg and the team now in 14th. A typically storming run from Fanni
Gyurko (15:22) rounded off the team’s effort, finishing in ninth overall. The Women’s
‘B’ team proved to be a fine effort from three of the Club’s Under-20 runners, Heather
Scott (18:22), Rosie Eckersley (17:54) and Elizabeth Thompson (18:24) to finish
26th. There were further good efforts from Julie McAfee (18:48) and Kirsten
McStay (17:51) with this incomplete team running in 33rd place at the end of
the second leg.
Men’s ‘B’ team came home in an admirable tenth place overall through Fraser
Logan’s first leg of 14 minutes 7 seconds followed up by Dale Colley (13:34)
and two Under-20 runners Sandy Holl (13:59) and Tom Graham-Marr (13:22). Central’s
‘C’ team was led off by Under-20 runner Telfer Gray (13:35), and with Gordon
Appelbe (17:23), Ben Noad (18:19) and a further talented Under-20, Sam Burton (15:21),
the team finished in 45th place overall. There was a more than useful effort by
Central’s top veteran’s team through Charles Graham-Marr (16:45), Will Hensman
(15:02), Jens Subke (16:20) and David Eckersley (15:34) with the team in 43rd
at the end of their efforts. There was also a fine effort from Central’s final
veteran’s team of Cameron Campbell (22:42), Colin Sinclair (17:54), Allan Gall
(19:27) and John Millar (22:32), who were caught up in a tussle towards the
back of the race, finishing in 72nd place. Liam McCabe (19:33) rounded off Central’s
efforts on the day in an incomplete team.
Andy Butchart improved his Scottish 5,000 Metres
record at the Anniversary Games in London in July, running 13:06.21. In June,
Andy took the 1,500 Metres club record with 3:38.84, just pipping the previous
record set by Ali Hay in 2010 by 0.06s.
Over in the US, Aidan Thompson took the club 3,000
Metres Steeplechase record below 9 minutes with 8:59.16 in March in Raleigh,
North Carolina. This took 10 seconds off the previous mark of 9:09.53 set by
Scott Green in 2015.
Fanni Gyurkó improved her club marathon record at the
London marathon with 2 hours 38:47 in April and Morag Millar set the
club 5,000 Metres record with 16:09.66 minutes in Nottingham in July improving
her own record by 40 seconds.
In the age groups, Jack Houghton improved the club Under-20
400 Metres Hurdles record 3 times finishing with 55.33s as he won the Scottish
junior title in Grangemouth in August. This also took him third on the club
senior all-time list. The previous record of 56.46s was set by Calum Laing in
Louise Carroll also improved her Under-15 Girls Triple
Jump record 3 times in the season finishing on 10.12m at the club championships
A notable performance was recorded by Scott Hopper in
the Under-15 Boys Javelin as he threw 51.87m to go fourth on the Scottish all-time
list, although not enough to beat the club and Scottish record held by Ryan
Stewart since 2006 at 54.65m. Notable performances are recorded for performances
worthy of mention but not official records e.g. wind assisted performances,
unofficial events or, as in Scott’s case, where they get in the Scottish all-time
list but don’t break the club record.
Other new entries in the club senior all-time list came in the 10,000 Metres with Jamie Crowe and Ali Hay entering the men’s top 5 and Fanni Gyurkó in the women’s top 5.
Ian Horsburgh of Central AC finished his 2019 Season with a silver medal run in the M40 category of the 200 Metres at the European Masters Championships in Jesolo, Italy. Ian’s season had been a bit stop-start with calf niggles and it was a gamble to travel, self-funded, to Italy to compete in these Championships especially as it meant three races over two days.
Ian set down a marker in the heats on 11 September with the
third fastest time of the round qualifying with a win in 22.97 seconds. The
semi-final and final were both played out on Thursday 12 September with
fluctuating wind conditions. Ian knew that his main threat came from Sweden’s Lion
Martinez and they were both drawn in the same heat, with a 1.3 metre per second
following wind Lion won with 22.43s with Ian less than a stride behind in
22.51s with both comfortably qualifying for the final as the two fastest
Conditions weren’t quite as favourable in the final with a 0.5 metre per second head wind as both athletes were locked together down the finishing straight. In the final shakedown both were given the same time of 22.62s and it was only after studying the photofinish image that Lion was given the gold by less than 0.01 second.
Central AC are proud of Ian’s efforts to stand on the second
step of the podium as the second fastest M40 European athlete over 200 Metres.
Under-17 Girls sprinters finished the outdoor season in style as they took a
superb silver medal at the Scottish National Relay Championships. The team of
Coirilidh Cook, Briagha Cook, Lucy More and Shona McLay came into the 4×100
Metres event with high hopes. Coirilidh and Briagha Cook had taken a superb
sprint hurdles 1-2 at the Scottish championships in August and Lucy More had
won her first ever medal at the district championships in May over 200 Metres
and then dipped below 13 seconds for the first time at 100 Metres. Shona McLay
was returning after an injury-interrupted season however had also run the 100
Metres below 13 seconds at the Scottish schools in June. The team safely
negotiated the heats, winning their heat in 50.53 seconds to qualify second
fastest overall behind a top class Giffnock team running 48.67s.
final, Giffnock proved too strong, but Coirilidh, Briagha, Lucy and Shona got
the baton round safely and held off a fast Pitreavie team to take second place
and silver medals in 50.84 seconds.
Such is the
strength in depth in this age group, Central almost had two teams in the final.
The B team was composed of a mix of hurdles and combined events specialists. Molly
Cornes, Mavia Duncan, Rebecca Cumming and Lois Burch had real ambition of
making the final, however illness hit three of the team and they almost never
made the start line. However, they pulled together to run of 52.91s and place fourth
in their heat meaning they had to wait and see. Unfortunately, their time put
them seventh fastest overall, and with only six lanes available this meant they
just missed out on the final.
And it was a
similar story elsewhere with teams just missing out. The Under-13 Boys team of
Dylan McCulloch, Sam Gardiner, Jamie Oldham and Lewis Miller ran a respectable 57.03s
for seventh quickest in their heats and the Under-15 Girls team of Ellie
Beavan-Whitty, Hannah Tams, Ella Wilson and Katherine Fowler got the baton
round in 54.50s to also place seventh just 0.1s off making the final.
In the Under-13
Girls 4×100 Metres, Leah Brown, Niamh McKinlay, Laura Matthews and Jessica
Hanson ran 62.80s in their heats.
had one team in the longer relays with Erin Miller, Brogan McMillan, Ellen
Montgomery and Amy Cully taking on the 4×300 Metres placing a respectable sixth
in 3:11.64 minutes.
It was good
to see so many Central teams out. Well done to everyone who took part.
Thanks to all club members who helped to make today’s Stirling 10k and 2k races a great success! We’ve updated the 10k page on this website with links to the event results on the Sport Systems website.
The final match of the Scottish Division One track and field
season saw Central Athletic Club Men’s Team competing in Grangemouth. Heavy
rain prior to the meeting and a blustery wind throughout the day made for
challenging conditions for all the athletes.
With the normal league format the first track event, the 400
Metres Hurdles, saw Michael Wright and David Lindsay once again shouldering
responsibilities with both providing strong performances. Michael finished
fifth ‘A’ runner, clocking 67.90 seconds with David finishing in second ‘B’ place
(68.67s). The 800 Metres races saw Under-17 Lewis Dow clocking 2 minutes 4.00 seconds
for fifth ‘A’, on a day where personal bests were hard to find. Under-20
athlete, Ben MacMillan, was a late replacement in the ‘B’ race so a 2:18
clocking for seventh was a welcome bonus for the team. Ian Horsburgh was
proving his fitness ahead of the European Masters Championships and powered to
a tasty 11.18s in the 100 Metres in third place. Unfortunately a calf tweak saw
Ian take no further part in the meeting but the Club wish him well with his endeavours
in Venice in mid-September. Under-17 sprinter, Jamie McNaught, was making his
debut in the league and produced a swift 12.38s performance placing him sixth
‘B’ runner in the 100 Metres. Erik Escala (11.87s), Daniel Ferguson (12.08s)
and John Wilkie (12.30s) all showed good sprinting form as guest athletes in
the 100 Metres. Michael Wright and David Lindsay again provided classy
performances in the 3,000 Metres Steeplechase with Michael finishing second ‘A’
runner with 10 minutes 1 second and David second ‘B’ with 10:35. It was good to
welcome Dale Colley back to the team providing a useful run for fourth ‘A’
placing in the 1,500 Metres in a useful 4 minutes 15 seconds while Under-20
Hamish Hickey weighed in with 4:19 for third ‘B’ points. Erik Escala is another
Under-17 athlete proving his ability in the Men’s League and here ran to 54.98s
over 400 Metres to place fourth in the ‘A’ race. The 5,000 Metres race saw Under-20
athletes Ben MacMillan and Hamish Hickey back on the track and always up with
the leading group. In the final fast last lap Ben charged home for fifth ‘A’
spot (15:32) while Hamish came home with third ‘B in 15:36, having recovered
from a trip earlier in the race while leading. Michael Wright continued his
busy day running as a guest in the 5,000 Metres clocking 16:09 and finishing
second out of a long list of guest runners.
In the field the throwing duties were again covered by Donavan
Webster and Ron Todd. Donavan achieved a superb personal best in the Discus
with a best of 38.25m for third ‘A’ place and picked up more useful points in
the Shot Put (11.48m) and Hammer (33.64m). Ron’s busy day saw him take more
useful points in the Javelin (27.82m), Shot Put (7.88m) and Discus (26.88m)
again showing a superb can-do attitude throughout. Ron had started his busy day
by taking maximum ‘B’ points in the Pole Vault with a 3.00m clearance and
encouraged Erik Escala to ‘A’ victory in the event with a 3.40m clearance while
Colin Christie cleared 2.40m as a guest competitor. The Under-17s scooped up
more points in the jumps through Daniel Bruce 5.46m and Jamie McNaught 5.09m in
the Long Jump and Daniel Ferguson (10.95m) in the Triple Jump. Daniel Bruce was
again our sole competitor in the High Jump, clearing 1.55m: a great effort in
the windy conditions.
The 4 x 100 Metres and 4 x 400 Metres Relays were left to
the four endurance runners prepared to take responsibility. The running order
for both races was Michael Wright, Dale Colley, Ben MacMillan and Hamish Hickey
with Michael, Ben and Hamish taking to the track just 10 minutes after
completing their 5,000 Metres races. Neither team looked out of place as
Central finished seventh in the sprint relay (53.09s) and sixth in the 4 x 400
As always there was great back-up from the Club’s officials
through Stuart MacPherson, John Dickson, Tom McMenemy, Bill Gault and Richard
Points on the day were Aberdeen 353; Falkirk 324; Edinburgh
243; Inverness 235; Victoria Park Glasgow 220, tying with Central also on 220; Corstorphine
192 and Shettleston 123. Overall positions and points at the end of the Season
saw Aberdeen retain the league trophy with a maximum 32 league points; Edinburgh
second with 23; Inverness 20; Central 18.5; Shettleston 18; Falkirk 13; Corstorphine
10; Victoria Park Glasgow 9.5. So Corstorphine and Victoria Park Glasgow were
relegated to Division 2 with Lasswade and Giffnock North gaining promotion.
Scott Hopper was on top form as he took a superb silver medal at the England age group championships in Bedford on Saturday. The 14-year-old from Callander was making the long trip down to Bedford for his first UK championships after an unbeaten season in Scotland which had included victories at East Districts, Scottish schools and Scottish championships. At the Scottish championships, Scott had won by 15 metres with a throw of 49.59 metres to put himself into the top 10 all-time in Scotland for the Under-15 age group. He was now looking for the bigger challenge of UK wide competition. He went into the event ranked 7th in the UK so knew it was going to be tough.
the second round he launched the spear beyond the 50m tape for the first time
ever, recording a superb personal best 51.87 metres to go into second place. He
wasn’t able to challenge the winner who threw beyond 57 metres and there were other
challengers to his position with several other athletes coming close. But his
throw was enough to hold onto runner-up spot and a silver medal, a fantastic
achievement at this level.
lifts him to 4th on the Scottish all-time list and puts him within touching
distance of the Scottish and club record of 54.65m set by former Central AC
athlete, Ryan Stewart in 2006. With few competitions left this season, the
record may well elude Scott but he can look to build on this achievement for
the future and aim for further success as he progresses through the age groups.
The Central AC track and field championships took place on Sunday 25 August at Grangemouth Stadium, with added competition provided by Falkirk Victoria Harriers (FVH) holding their club championships at the same time.
All the results are available in the PDF file below.
Central AC’s senior athletes were on top form at the 127th Scottish National Championships held at Grangemouth over the weekend. In changeable blustery conditions fast times were hard to come by but Central won a brace of silvers in the men’s and women’s 5,000 Metres along with a Hurdles medal.
was contesting the Women’s 5,000 Metres on the Saturday. Fanni has been a
Central member for several years since moving from her native Hungary to
Dunblane and has clocked up some impressive marathon performances, setting the
club record at 2 hours 39 minutes in Frankfurt two years ago. She was stepping
down to 5,000 Metres as preparation for upcoming marathons in Budapest in
September and Frankfurt in October. In a tactical race Annabelle Simpson of
Fife proved too strong as she set a new championship record but Fanni stuck to
her race plan and finished in the silver medal position with a time of 17
minutes 22.23 seconds.
The Men’s 5,000
Metres was run on the Sunday in wet blustery conditions where Jamie Crowe and
Ali Hay lined up for Central. Jamie has just returned from a scholarship at
Lamar University in America where he has run some impressive times while Ali is
a former Scottish champion and Commonwealth Games finalist, so both were
looking for a podium spot. In another fast race both Central athletes stuck
with the pace. Christian Jones of Dundee ultimately proved too strong and set a
new championship record, but Jamie Crowe stuck behind him and took silver in 14
minutes 28.93 seconds, a time also inside the previous championship record. Ali
was just outside the medals in fourth with 14:40.22 minutes, both impressive
times in difficult conditions.
Jamie commented, “I’m pleased to get the medal, but it was rough out there!
It’s been a long season. I’ve been racing since March so will take some time
off now before the cross country starts. But I’m happy with my season.”
Houghton was returning to Grangemouth a week after winning the Scottish Junior
400 Metres Hurdles title, this time looking to take on Scotland’s senior
athletes. In a top class 400 Metres Hurdles race the top three were too good
for Jack but he held his stride to finish in fourth with 57.08s, a respectable
place against a top class field. However, he was not finished there and
returned an hour later to take on the 110 Metres Hurdles. And here he did
manage to get on the podium as he ran 16.81 seconds, a personal best at the
senior height, to win the bronze, Jack’s first ever national senior medal.
several other good performances. Stirling marathon champion, Michael Wright,
placed fifth in the 3,000 Metres Steeplechase in 9:46.22. Personal bests were
rare in the difficult conditions but Iain Davies managed two of them at 800
Metres, with 1:55.33 in his heat then 1:55.19 in the final to place seventh in
a fast race won in 1:48. Jack Kerr’s 1:58.88 in his 800 Metres heat was not
quite enough to progress. In the 5,000 Metres ‘B’ race Hamish Hickey put in a
decent show as he placed third in a time of 15:25.65 minutes.
sprints Ian Horsburgh placed fifth in the 200 Metres final with 22.67s (22.60s
in heat), an impressive result from an athlete who is now in the Masters
category where he is ranked one of the top in Europe in his age group. Kieran
Halliday set a new personal best in the 100 Metres with 11.62s to progress to
the semi-finals then ran 23.76s in the 200 Metres.
had a tough time in the Long Jump with the changing conditions making run ups
difficult but managed 7.10m in the Long Jump for a respectable seventh.
In the Scottish Under-17 Championships Central AC’s hurdlers were at the fore with club athletes winning three medals through a sprint hurdles 1-2 from Balfron sisters Coirilidh and Briagha Cook and a silver from Denny teenager, Daniel Bruce over the one lap hurdles.
In the Girls’
80 Metres Hurdles the preparation for the event for Coirlidh and Briagha could
not have been more contrasting. Coirilidh, the younger sister at 15, came into the
event as the top ranked in the field and unbeaten in Scotland this season. However
the main story for the Balfron based family was the return of her 16-year-old older
sister Briagha after a long 15 month injury lay off. The pair of them had
previously both been winning national titles in their respective age groups, but
Briagha’s career had abruptly been put on hold after she picked up a serious foot
injury in early 2018. This meant while Coirilidh had been winning multiple
national titles, Briagha had been forced to cheer from the sidelines as she
went through a lengthy rehab process including two operations. Briagha finally made
her first tentative steps back to competition only 10 days ago and came through
strongly with a personal best 12.01s putting her top five in Scotland showing
she was ready to take on a national championships. In contrast, Coirilidh’s
preparations had been much more to plan with wins at the Scottish indoor &
Scottish schools championships. She was looking to complete the set with the
Scottish outdoor title.
In the heats
Coirilidh and Briagha were drawn in the same heat and came through first and second
to take automatic qualifying places for the final as Coirilidh ran 11.95s and
Briagha, a new personal best 12.00s.
final came the rain was starting to come down and the wind constantly changing
making conditions difficult. When the gun went Coirilidh found herself in a
battle with an athlete from Morpeth. Briagha had opted to not use starting
blocks as she was still protecting her foot, and found herself adrift in third
place, but gradually picked up speed. Coirilidh started establishing a lead and
pulled clear to take the win. But behind her Briagha was in full stride and
gradually reeled in the Morpeth Harrier then pull ahead after the final hurdle
to take an unexpected silver medal making it a 1-2 for Central AC and the
had stopped the clock in a superb new personal best 11.77s earning her a gold
medal and gold award standard while Briagha had dipped below 12 seconds for the
first time ever with a personal best 11.92s. Afterwards the sisters were
delighted to finish in a 1-2 together. For Coirilidh it was another national
title after a fantastic season. For Briagha though it was a return she thought
might never happen. She commented “I was just thinking on the start line would
I get over the first hurdle?” She certainly did that and a lot more and can
hopefully inspire others going through injury problems that with patience and perseverance
you can come back and be a medal winner again. They will take on the Central AC
club championships next week then travel to Bedford for the UK championships
the following week.
was contesting what many regard the toughest of events, the 400 Metres Hurdles.
Due to an administrative error Daniel had been unable to contest the Scottish Schools
but as the second ranked in Scotland with a best time of 58.97s, he was looking
to show what he could do. His main rival from Dundee set off strongly and
established a big lead and Daniel found himself in a three-way tussle for the
other medals. But Daniel dug in and ran a strong second bend to pull clear into
second place, then in the home straight set about chasing down the leader. Ultimately,
his opponent had too much of a lead to catch, but Daniel finished strongly to
take the silver medal in a superb time of 57.93s, smashing his previous best by
over a second. Last year Daniel had won a Scottish Schools bronze but this was a
proud moment as he won his first ever medal at a national championships. Daniel
went on to show his versatility as he placed seventh in high jump with 1.62m
and ninth in Long Jump with 5.75m.
nearly more medals for Central in the hurdles. Celtic games international,
Daniel Ferguson, was contesting the 100 Metres Hurdles. He started strongly and
while the top three were too fast for him, he was rewarded with a fourth place
and personal best 14.23s.
was competing for the first time ever in the Girls’ High Jump and had the
daunting task of taking on the best in Scotland. She managed 1.42m for seventh
but with more training and experience will look to come back and challenge for
the podium next year.
placed 10th in a tactical 1,500 Metres in 4:23.14 minutes. Sam Grivell managed
4:49.80 at 1,500 Metres and 2:23.82 at 800 Metres.
sprints, Lucy More was not far off the 100 Metres final after 13.29s in her
heat, then ran 28.11s into a headwind in the 200 Metres.
delighted to announce a new range of club kit – hoodies, tracksuits, t-shirts
and more. The kit is from Joma, who provide the Scotland kit for Scottish
Athletics, and who are one of the largest sports kit manufacturers in Europe.
The kit will be available for purchase through a Central AC specific webshop, hosted by TTL, one of Joma’s value added resellers in Scotland (Total Teamwear Ltd, http://teamwearscotland.com) – the Central AC webshop will be going live shortly. TTL also have premises in Glasgow with a small showroom area with samples of kit.
There’s a full list of the Joma kit range with prices on the Club kit page.
agreement with Joma, club members get a discount on list price, and TTL
customise garments with the club logo and your initials.
bringing a range of sample kit to the club at the August time trials on Thursday 29 Augustat Stirling University track for club members to try on. That will
help you see the style and choose the right size. Since the kit is customised,
once it has been delivered, refunds won’t be possible.
Joma kit range will not replace our existing arrangement for competition vests
and crop tops – we will continue to source these through Ron Hill, and they
will continue to be available for sale from Run4It in Bridge of Allan or from
Championships, Grangemouth, 10-11 August 2019
Jack Houghton was on superb form as he became Scottish junior 400 Metres Hurdles champion at the Scottish Under-20 championships at Grangemouth at the weekend. The 19-year-old from Dunblane has had an excellent season so far after setting two new club Under-20 records this season and just missing the UK championship final in June. Jack has been a Central AC member for many years and has won Scottish schools titles but a Scottish championship title has so far eluded him. His first attempt at the Under-20 championships two years ago did not go to plan as he lost his stride and hit several hurdles. However this year, with two years more experience he was looking to finally land a Scottish gold medal. When the gun went he set out strongly holding his 15 stride pattern all the way up the back straight to open up a 5 metre gap on the opposition. However on the bend, as he changed his stride down, he was challenged by the athlete on the lane outside him. However he held his form and stride up the home straight and, after negotiating the final hurdles, surged away from the field to win with an excellent 55.33 seconds. This not only improved his personal best and club Under-20 record but moved him up to third on the club senior all-time list. This was significant as it beat his coach, Kenny Pearson’s lifetime best and former club record of 55.47s. Jack will compete at the senior championships next week with realistic podium ambitions and will also be targeting the club senior record of 55.1s.
further success for the club in the 1,500 Metres races. The men’s event saw
three Central athletes taking part. In the heats Hamish Hickey ran a personal
best 4:11.95 seconds to just miss a final spot. However Ben MacMillan (4:06.58)
and Sandy Holl (4:06.61) both managed to get through their heat and qualify for
In the final Ben
hung onto the leaders as long as he could. When the bell came he found himself
in fourth place and dug in for the final lap. He didn’t manage to make any headway
on the top three but held off the rest of the field to finish an excellent fourth
with 4:02.01 minutes.
In the women’s
race Lauren McCulloch found herself in a similar position and held on for fourth
place with an excellent new personal best 4:41.21 minutes.
Championships, Grangemouth, Saturday 10 August 2019
Scott Hopper was
on top form at the Scottish Under-15 championships at Grangemouth on Saturday
as he took a superb gold and silver medal. The 14-year-old from Callander has
been unbeaten at Javelin throughout the season and has been steadily improving
with a personal best of 46.76m in July. He has also showed his versatility with
good performances at High Jump and Pentathlon this season. However, it was in
his throwing events he was looking to succeed at the national championships. And
he certainly achieved that in the Javelin as he stamped his authority in the
first round and launched the spear out to a superb new personal best 49.59m. This
put him over 15 metres clear of the field effectively putting the competition
beyond doubt. He then had five further throws to try and throw beyond the 50m
tape and was well over the 40m line with each throw, but his first throw ended
up as his best. This distance puts Scott eighth on the Scottish Under-15 all-time
list for the event and is within 5 metres of the club and Scottish record held
by former Central AC athlete Ryan Stewart since 2006.
alongside Scott was Robb Ferguson who is also a versatile athlete having won
the Scottish Schools Under-14 Javelin title and medalled at hurdles earlier
this season. The 13-year-old from Tullibody knew he was up against it as one of
the younger athletes in the Under-15 field but threw an excellent 31.45 metres in
the first round to take third place and the bronze medal. This distance was a
personal best and the first time Robb has thrown over 30 metres with the 600g
weight of javelin. Robb has another year in this age group and will look to
retain the title for the club next year.
had further events to do. Scott went on to the Shot Put event where he set
another personal best 12.94 metres for second place and an excellent silver
Robb took part
in the 80 Metres Hurdles and found himself in fourth place at the mid-point of
the race. He chased the leaders down all the way and was gaining on the third
place athlete but couldn’t quite get there and had to settle for fourth. However
he smashed his personal best with 13.01s and can be proud of his achievements
as a first year in the age group.
several athletes just missing out on podium positions. Connor Bell was
competing in the 800 Metres and at 13 was young for the age group but ran hard and
while he couldn’t keep up with the top three he took an excellent fourth place,
just outside his personal best with 2:10.02 minutes.
took a respectable fourth place in the High Jump with a near personal best 1.49m,
not quite getting the 1.54m which would have got her a personal best and a
medal. She then set a new personal best and club record in the Triple Jump with
9.90m, just missing the 10m mark. Katherine Fowler was also just outside the
medals with fourth in the 200 Metres in 26.84s (26.74s in heat) after placing
fifth in the long jump with a near personal best 4.95m.
has made good improvements this season and placed a respectable fifth in the Discus
with a personal best 20.21m after setting a personal best 13.32s in the 75
Metres Hurdles. Megan Dunlop placed seventh in the Discus with 19.33m after
14.41s in the 100 Metres. Ella Wilson set a personal best at Triple Jump with
9.43m for eighth after 14.71s in the 100 Metres.
In the 1,500 Metres Mirren Henry and Cameron Kerr reached their respective finals. Mirren ran 5:21.47 minutes for ninth place in the girls’ final and Cameron 4:39 (4:36.16 in heat) for 10th in the boys’ final. Also in the 1,500 Metres, Anna MacKinnon ran a season’s best 5:44.94 minutes.
In the 800
Metres Ruaridh Burns ran 2:25.25 minutes in the boys’ heats and East District
champion, Amy Cully ran 2:36.06 minutes in the girls’ heats.
In the sprints
Finlay Marchant ran 13.31s in the 100 Metres and 26.81s in the 200 Metres,
Hannah Tams ran 14.40s in the 100 Metres then just missed out on the 200 Metres
semi-finals with a season’s best 29.82s in her heat. Brogan MacMillan ran 30.11s
in the 200 Metres after 1.24m at High Jump.
Well done to all
Central AC competitors for taking on the best in Scotland.
Championships, Grangemouth, Sunday 11 August 2019
Central AC’s Under-13s
were well represented at the Scottish championships. A wet day at Grangemouth
made new personal bests hard to come by but there were several fine
Top performer of
the day for the club was Danielle Abel who took on the 70 Metres Hurdles. The
12-year-old from Alloa reached the final at the Scottish schools in the older Under-14
age group earlier this season and was looking to do the same at the Under-13
age group. She had a fast heat and smashed her personal best with 12.36s to
qualify for the final as a fastest loser. She then finished in a respectable
sixth place, beating athletes who beat her in the heats, with 12.45s.
narrowly missed the 100 Metres final after running 14.38s then just missed the
half way cut in the Long Jump with a best jump of 3.83m after three rounds. Jamie
Oldham was placed ninth overall in the 800 Metres after placing third in his
heat with 2:30.32 minutes then ran 31.17s in the 200 Metres. Jamie Connor
placed 20th overall after finishing fourth in his heat with a new personal best
2:49.17 then ran 31.59s in the 200 Metres. In the girls’ 1,500 Metres Niamh
McKinlay took an excellent second place in her heat to finish 11th overall with
5:31.39. Sophie Morgan ran a new personal best 14.94s in the 100 Metres and
Alice Cameron placed 10th in the Discus with a season’s best 11.00m then ran
33.73s in the 200 Metres.
Well done to all
Central AC competitors for taking on the best in Scotland.
Erik Escala and Coirilidh Cook were on international duty at the weekend as
they represented Scotland in the annual school track and field international. This
event brings together the top schools athletes from England, Wales, Ireland and
Scotland and this year was hosted by Wales at Swansea.
Coirilidh Cook was competing in the 80 Metres Hurdles and 4×100 Metres Relay after winning the Scottish schools hurdles title in June. The 15-year-old from Balfron has previously represented Scotland in both these event at the Celtic games last year where she won double gold, but this was her first international for Scottish schools. In the 80 Metres Hurdles she placed an excellent fifth place in a top class field with 12.08 seconds. She then won bronze as part of the 4×100 Metres Relay team as her third leg run helped the team to third place. Coirilidh has another year in this age group so will look to make more impact next year.
For Erik it
was a particularly proud moment as he made his international debut. The 16-year-old
from Dunblane was selected in the Shot Put event after winning silver at the
Scottish schools in June. Erik managed 12.38 metres for seventh place overall,
a respectable result for a multi-eventer up against a field of top class shot
put specialists. Erik will be aiming to make more of a challenge in the
combined events international later this year where he will be able to show his
prowess, not only in throwing but in jumps and sprints as well.
Central Athletic Club men’s team travelled to Aberdeen on
Sunday 21 July to compete in the penultimate match of the Scottish Division One
Track and Field season finishing in second place on the day with great
performances from all the athletes.
With the normal league format the first track event, the 400
Metres Hurdles, saw the welcome return of Jack Houghton as he strode to victory
in the ‘A’ race in 58.22 seconds. David Lindsay again provided valuable points
in second ‘B’ place with a pleasing 66.56s clocking. The 800 Metres saw Jack
Kerr take control in the ‘A’ race to win with 1 minute 59.78 seconds and likewise
Jamie Crowe show good racing instinct to win the ‘B’ race in 2:06. It was good
to see Pete Muirhead powering down the track in the 100 Metres to record a close
up third place in 11.58s backed up by Kai Ligertwood in seventh place in the
‘B’ race with 12.96s. Michael Wright again proved his class in the 3,000 Metres
Steeplechase winning in 9 minutes 48.33 seconds while David Lindsay continued
to prove his worth to the team taking second ‘B’ place with 11:17.99. Jack Kerr
shouldered responsibility in the 400 Metres ’A’ race, clocking 53.47s for third,
and more useful points. The 1,500 Metres saw Jamie Crowe ensuring maximum
points for the team with a classy run of 4 minutes 3 seconds in first ‘A’ spot
and Michael Wright finishing off his busy day with 4:23 in third ‘B’ place. The
200 Metres saw Jack Houghton back on the track picking up fourth ‘A’ points with
23.62s. The 5,000 Metres saw Central field two Under-20 athletes, Hamish Hickey
and Ben MacMillan. Both youngsters showed great determination and were up with
the lead pack throughout the twelve and a half laps with Hamish finishing in
fourth ‘A’ spot (15:14) and Ben in first ‘B’ (15:17).
In the field the throwing duties were covered, once again,
by Donavan Webster and Ron Todd. Donavan won the Discus with a best throw of
35.96m and produced personal bests in the Shot Put (12.31m) and Hammer (36.73m).
Ron Todd’s day saw him rake in points in the Javelin (27.2m), Shot Put (8.27m),
Discus (26.30m) and Hammer (23.35m) showing a great attitude throughout. Ron had
started his busy day by winning the Pole Vault with an excellent 3.40m clearance.
Peter Muirhead continues to make progress towards his goal of top performances
in the Long Jump and here had a best effort of 7.09m into a headwind for second
‘A’ placing. Daniel Bruce provided Long Jump back-up with a 5.70m effort for
second ‘B’ points. Daniel was our sole competitor in the High Jump, clearing
1.55m and three close efforts at the next height. Jack Houghton stepped up in
the Triple Jump with one effort, as he rightly conserved energy for other
events, hitting 10.76m in fourth.
A much changed 4 x 100 Metres Relay quartet of Daniel Bruce,
Kai Ligertwood, David Lindsay and Jack Houghton came through well for third
clocking 46.45s. The 4 x 400 Metres Relay quartet of Jack Kerr, Hamish Hickey, Ben
MacMillan and Jamie Crowe were competitive throughout taking fourth in a season’s
best of 3 minutes 47.75 seconds.
As always there was great back-up from the club’s officials
through Stuart MacPherson, John Dickson and Tom McMenemy.
Points on the day were: Aberdeen 383; Central 318; Inverness
259; Shettleston 251; Edinburgh 207; Victoria Park Glasgow 186; Corstorphine
141 and Falkirk 99. Overall positions and points prior to the final match are
Aberdeen 24; Shettleston 17 with 797 match points; Edinburgh 17 with 750 match
points; Central 15 with 766 match points; Inverness 15 with 763 match points;
Corstorphine 8; Victoria Park Glasgow 6 with 520 match points and Falkirk 6
with 450 match points.
was on great form as he won an excellent bronze medal at the Scottish combined
events championships. The 14-year-old from Callander was competing in the Under-15
Boys age group in his first ever Pentathlon. Scott was looking for a good start
with his strongest event, the Shot Put, up first, and a superb final round
personal best throw of 12.89m opened up a 100 point lead on his opponents. However,
he knew his lead was vulnerable as the next event was the 80 Metres Hurdles, an
event he has never done before, and he had some of Scotland’s top hurdlers
lining up against him. However he was undaunted and produced a respectable time
of 13.21s which was just enough to maintain his lead. Scott found himself in a
high class High Jump event and cleared 1.64m for second, but with a rival
clearing 1.73m Scott lost his lead and dropped down to second place overall. He
then produced another good performance for second place in the Long Jump with
5.40m, but good performances elsewhere put Scott down to third place overall. Going
into the final 800 Metres event, just 21 points separated the top three, which
is just 2 seconds in the 800 Metres so everything was still to play for. Scott ran
hard but was unable to make inroads against the two athletes ahead of him as
one took victory and the other stuck right behind Scott to take overall silver.
Scott dug in and finished in a big personal best 2:25.69 minutes and was
rewarded with a bronze medal with a final score of 2,574, a superb performance
considering he had never done a Pentathlon before and had so little experience
in some of the events.
competing for Central in the event was Ruairidh Burns who set personal bests in
the Shot Put (7.20m), 80 Metres Hurdles (14.34s) and High Jump (1.55m) and
finished second in the 800 Metres with 2:17.93 minutes to score an overall
personal best 2,065 points for a respectable fifth place. Ruaridh has another
year in this age group so will look to challenge for the medals next year.
well represented in Under-15 Girls age group with Scottish schools bronze
medallist Katherine Fowler joined by Ellen Montgomery and Brogan MacMillan. In
the opening Long Jump event Katherine placed fourth with 4.67m, Ellen set a personal
best 4.12m and Brogan jumped 3.36m. In the 75 Metres Hurdles Katherine set a
personal best 12.96s for fifth place with Ellen running 14.00s and Brogan
16.27s. Brogan set a personal best in the Shot Put with 6.27m as Katherine
threw 7.20m and Ellen 6.73m.
In the High
Jump Katherine was on superb form as she cleared an excellent personal best
1.53m, the second highest of the competition. Brogan and Ellen both managed
season’s bests with 1.29m and 1.26m respectively.
Metres saw Ellen and Brogan run in the first heat. Ellen ran a good season’s
best 2:52.41 minutes to finish on a personal best score 1,942 points for 12th
place. Brogan ran 2:54.56 minutes for a personal best score 1,585 points and
heat saw the event leaders go head to head. Katherine’s excellent High Jump had
lifted her to fifth place but she still needed to pick up 100 points to get
into the medals. In the end she finished with 2:39.27 minutes and though she
had overtaken some of the athletes ahead of her the final scores saw her in fourth
place, just outside the medals, with 2,628 points, a very respectable position
but slightly down on her personal best.
In the Under-17s, Molly Cornes was taking on her first ever Heptathlon with the challenge of competing over two days. She started with a personal best in the 80 Metres Hurdles with 13.90s for fifth place then produced a superb High Jump of 1.59m, second highest of the day, Shot Put of 8.22m and 27.16s at 200 Metres to put her in fifth place at the end of the first day. In the second day, 4.74m at Long Jump then 15.95m at Javelin moved her up to fourth going into the 800 Metres. Molly ran a personal best 800 Metres of 2:41.81 minutes to do all she could to get a medal as she beat the third placed athlete by eight seconds but this was not quite enough to get on the podium. However Molly can be proud of fourth place with a score of 3,671 points in her first ever Heptathlon.
three Under-13 pentathletes competing with Dylan McCulloch in the boys and Loren
Stewart and Niamh McKinlay taking on the girls event.
well with 1.19m in the High Jump then had an excellent run in the hurdles
finishing second place with 14.09s, to move up to fifth place overall. He
followed this up with another personal best in the Shot Put with 6.85m then a
near personal best at Long Jump (4.11m) and finished with 2:47.27 minutes in
the 800 Metres. This gave him a personal best final score of 1,260 points and a
respectable seventh place out of 17 athletes.
Girls Pentathlon saw Loren Stewart and Niamh McKinlay taking part. Both
athletes are young for the age group so were looking for experience for the
future. They started in the High Jump where Niamh cleared 1.15m. However Loren
had a superb competition as she jumped successive personal bests at 1.31, 1.34
and 1.37m, to win her pool and place third overall. In the 70 Metres Hurdles
Niamh set a personal best 15.34s and Loren ran 17.42s in her first ever attempt
at this event. In the Long Jump Loren managed 3.96m and Niamh 3.05m. Loren set
another personal best in the Shot Put throwing 5.38m with Niamh just missing
her personal best with a throw of 4.41m. Both girls had good runs in the 800
Metres, Niamh placed second in her heat with 2:47.38 minutes while Loren set a
personal best 2:52.85 minutes for third in her heat. Overall Loren set a new
personal best score 1,626 points and Niamh finished on 1,327 points. Both girls
have another year in this age group and will look to improve for next year.
There was considerable success by Central athletes at the
iconic Black Rock 5 race held on the evening of Friday 14 June in Kinghorn,
Fife. The 5 mile race features some fast downhill stretches and a tortuous
uphill finish as well as a run into the Forth estuary to round the Black Rock.
The 30th running of the race saw some 1,000 runners toe the
line but there was no doubting the winner as Central’s Jamie Crowe took the
final uphill finish in his stride to win in 22 minutes 5 seconds, missing the
record by a frustrating 2 seconds. In the women’s race Morag Millar continued to
show excellent form to win in an exceptional 25 minutes 25 seconds and set a
new women’s record for the event. There was further success for Central’s
runners with Scott Brember (24.18) taking the Veteran’s prize and Neil Cameron
(27.34) winning the Over-50s race.
Other notable performances came from Scott Green in 12th
(24.54), Will Hensman as third Veteran (26.21) and Natalie Stewart as third female
(27.32). Amy Hendry finished in 31.20 to round off Central’s success in winning
both the Men’s and Women’s team prizes.
Friday night’s seem to work well for Central’s top runners and the Brian Goodwin Memorial 10K on Friday 21 June filled the bill nicely. The Bellahouston Harriers organised race in Pollock Park, Glasgow has a reputation for fast times and it was good to see Morag winning again in a tasty 33 minutes 51 seconds and Jamie taking second in the Senior Men’s race in a personal best 29 minutes 43 seconds only headed by Commonwealth Games marathon runner Callum Hawkins.
Central AC had a successful weekend at the Scottish Schools Track and Field Championships.
Group D report
In the youngest Group D (Under-14) age group the club’s competitors were mainly taking part at this level for the first time but came away with an impressive tally of four medals and numerous personal bests.
Ferguson of Lornshill Academy was on top form as he took his first ever gold
medal at a national level event in the Javelin after throwing a personal best of
35.71m in a close competition. In the 80 Metres Hurdles he added to his medal
collection with a silver in a time of 12.86s.
on top of the podium was Connor Bell of Balfron High. Connor ran a measured 800
Metres as he paced himself over the first lap then hit the front in the second
lap. One athlete remained with him but he managed to stay in front in the
sprint finish to win in an excellent personal best 2:09.23. In the same event was
Ruaridh Burns of Stirling High who finished a respectable fifth in a personal
were well represented in this age group with Danielle Abel, Hannah Tams and
Kate Gilvear all turning out for the school for the first time. Danielle was
competing in the 75 Metres Hurdles for the first time ever and also stepping up
from her usual Under-13 age group. She was undaunted by the challenge and
finished in an excellent fifth place in the final with 13.51s. She also managed
a fine finish in the Long Jump, jumping to a personal best 4.12m for seventh.
Kate were both contesting the 100 Metres. Hannah had a good outing as she
reached the final where she placed eighth in a season’s best 13.91s and Kate
ran a personal best 14.56s in her heat.
Group C report
of McLaren High was on great form in the Group C (age 14) age group at the
Scottish Schools Championships, winning two medals. He started in the Shot Put where
a throw of 12.52m earned him a silver medal in a close competition. He returned
the next day for the Javelin and was the clear winner with a big throw of 39.23m,
over six metres clear of the opposition, taking the gold medal.
In the 1,500
Metres Cameron MacMillan of Dollar Academy was on the podium after running a
personal best 4:28.58 minutes to take the bronze medal, his first ever medal at
a national level event.
Central AC pair Louise Carroll of Balfron and Katherine Fowler of McLaren High were each chasing their second Scottish schools medal this season – the previous weekend Louise had won a silver in the relay and Katherine a bronze in the pentathlon. In the High Jump both athletes went clear up to 1.40m, and at 1.45m Louise cleared first time and Katherine cleared at the second time of asking. At 1.50m both athletes came very close but couldn’t quite go over, but with only two athletes going clear Louise won the bronze medal on countback, her first ever individual medal at a national level event, with Katherine in fifth on countback
another chance at a medal in the 200 Metres. She won her heat comfortably, just
missing her personal best with 26.49s into a strong headwind. In the final the
headwind was even stronger and she found herself in fourth place coming off the
bend. She dug in and clawed back five metres on the athlete outside her to
snatch an excellent bronze medal in 26.74s, an excellent time into a 3.5 metres
per second headwind.
also entered in the 75 Metres Hurdles and achieved her aim of reaching the
final where she placed seventh in 13.10s.
endurance events Catriona Kane (Dunblane HS) was on good form in the 1,500
Metres where she ran a big personal best 5:20.34 to place eighth. East District
champion Amy Cully (Wallace High) reached the 800 Metres final after running
Group B report
Cook and Erik Escala were on top form at the Scottish Schools Championships in
the Group B (age 15-16) age group. This age group has the added incentive of
international selection from the event.
has won numerous Scottish titles and had already won a gold medal in the
Balfron High relay team a week earlier. However she was looking for her first
individual title in the Under-17 age group as she took on the 80 Metres Hurdles.
She is unbeaten over hurdles this season but had not yet faced opposition from
the whole of Scotland and with some good athletes challenging her, she knew she
would have to be at her best. After comfortably qualifying through her heat she
lined up in the final and set off fast. She led from the start but faced a
strong challenge at the finish. However she managed to hold on at the line to
take the gold in 12.01s, an excellent time considering the strong headwind. She
later took part in the Long Jump placing a respectable sixth with a personal
Erik Escala showed his versatility as he first took on the Pole Vault event. The
16-year-old Dunblane High pupil has been making steady progress at a relatively
new event for him and made another big improvement as he took his personal best
from 3.30m to an excellent clearance of 3.55m to take the bronze medal. He was
not finished there, and looked to add to his medals in the Shot Put where he
produced another personal best with a throw of 12.44m which won him an
excellent silver medal to make it a medal double.
further good news for Coirilidh and Erik as both athletes have been selected to
represent Scotland at the schools track and field international in Swansea in
July where they will face teams from Wales, Ireland and England.
of Stirling High had a return to form in the 100 Metres where she ran 12.96s to
qualify for the final. In the final she was facing a strong headwind but
managed 13.26s for a respectable fifth place.
of McLaren High has made great improvements in the hurdles this season and ran
an excellent 12.75s in the 80 Metres Hurdles heat in spite of the strong
headwind, to line up alongside Coirilidh and make it two Central athletes in
the final. This was Lois’s first ever final appearance at a national event and
she can be proud of her seventh place finish.
Tindall of Alva Academy ran a big personal best in the 3,000 Metres of 11:08.29
for eighth and also set a personal best in the 800 Metres with 2:28.29.
There was a sixth
place for Molly Cornes (Balfrom High) in the High Jump with 1.50m and Daniel
Ferguson (Lornshill Academy) placed seventh in the 100 Metres Hurdles with
15.14s after running 12.18s in the 100 Metres.
Haughton (Dunblane High) sprinted to the 100 Metres semi-finals with 11.92s in
his heat. Aidan Grevemberg (Balfron High) pulled up with a hamstring injury in
the 100 Metres, but still crossing the line in 12.15s. This was enough to
progress but he was unfortunately unable to continue after his injury.
(McLaren High) just missed out on a semi-final place in the 100 Metres with
13.89s, and then ran 27.99s in the 200 Metres.
Group A report
oldest Group A (age 17 and over) age group Central AC’s athletes brought a
wealth of experience to the event. For many of them it was also their final appearance
for their school before leaving.
included Tom Graham-Marr who was competing in the 1,500 Metres. The 18-year-old
Stirling High pupil was still chasing his first medal after six years of
appearances at Scottish schools events. However his wait finally came to an end
as he ran an excellent personal best 4:15.76 to place third and step onto the
podium for a bronze medal.
Academy pair Emma Mailer and Ben MacMillan are no strangers to the podium after
numerous gold medals between them. Emma was pleased to get on top of the podium
again in the 400 Metres Hurdles after running a controlled race to take the
Ben was in
the 3,000 Metres and found himself in the leading group in a tactical race. He
was well placed when the pace quickened in the final lap and while he was just
outrun in the final sprint finish he still managed to take a fine silver medal
with a time of 8:57.54.
Thompson signed off her Balfron High career on a high note as she took bronze
in the 400 Metres, and Euan Smith (Dollar Academy) was on form in the 200
Metres as he set an impressive personal best 23.03s for sixth.
was an excellent turnout from club athletes with a total of 17 medals including
five golds and 20 personal bests. Well done to all that took part.
Central AC athletes
put on some great performances as they represented their schools in the
Scottish Schools Pentathlon Championships at Grangemouth on Saturday.
performer of the day was Katherine Fowler of McLaren High who won a superb
bronze medal in the Girls Group C (age 14) Pentathlon, her first ever national
medal. Katherine was kept company throughout the day by her Central teammate
and training partner Louise Carroll of Balfron. In the opening 75 Metres Hurdles
event the pair were drawn next to each other, and matched each other stride for
stride to the line to finish joint second in their heat in 13.2 seconds which
for Katherine was a personal best and put them in joint fourth overall.
In the High Jump, Katherine and Louise again finished equal with clearances of 1.44 metres for joint third in the event and fifth place overall. There were personal bests for both girls in the Shot Put as Louise threw 7.40m and Katherine threw a big personal best 7.91m, a two metre improvement. This put Katherine in sixth and Louise seventh, within 60 points and 100 points respectively of the second placed athlete. In the Long Jump, Louise set another personal best 4.66m and Katherine produced a big personal best jump of 4.96m, the second furthest in the competition. This jump also meant she leapt up the leader board into third place and a potential medal, with Louise now sitting in seventh.
Katherine was only 16 points ahead of the fourth placed athlete which equated to just over a second in the 800 Metres. Her resolve was put to the test when her rival set off hard but Katherine responded and tracked her all the way before sprinting past in the home straight to finish in another excellent personal best 2:32.14 minutes. Louise also set a new personal best 2:41.76 minutes, chopping 10 seconds of her previous fastest. When the scores were added up Katherine had finished with 2,712 points to take third place and go top 10 in the UK rankings, while Louise scored 2,487 points for an excellent sixth, with both earning a place in the Scottish schools squad. It was a great day for both girls as they had set big personal bests and also achieved gold standards in the club awards scheme. For Katherine the day finished with the proud moment when she stood on the podium for the first time ever at a national event to be presented with her bronze medal.
Erik Escala of Dunblane High was taking part in the Boys Group B (age 15-16) Pentathlon and opened well in the Shot Put with 11.99m for second place. He followed this with an excellent personal best 14.92s in the 100 Metres Hurdles and 5.60m in the Long Jump to put him in fourth place. He set further personal bests in the 200 Metres (23.98s) and 1,500 Metres (5:15.33) to finish with a personal best score 2,978 points for fourth place, just outside the medals but enough to earn a national squad place.
Campbell of McLaren High took part in the Boys Group C Pentathlon and opened
with a Long Jump of 4.53m followed by personal bests in every event after that:
80 Metres Hurdles (13.30s), Shot Put (7.96m), 200 Metres (27.24s) and 800
Metres (2:34.17). He scored a personal best 1,935 points for sixth place and a
national squad call up.
Ruaridh Burns of Stirling High was taking part in the Group D (Under-14) Pentathlon opening with 14.32s in the 80 Metres Hurdles. He then produced a personal best 4.94m in the Long Jump to win the event and put himself in third place. He unfortunately missed his Shot Put after a timetable change meaning he registered no points for the event but bounced back by winning the 200 Metres in 26.36s. He finished with second place in the 800 Metres with 2:19.93 minutes to finish in fifth place in a personal best score of 1,795 points. He was only 300 points behind the winner and with a Shot Put anywhere near his personal best he would have taken the gold medal. He will look to make up for this later in the season.
of Balfron High had set an excellent personal best of 2,978 points earlier in
the year but after being hit with illness recently was never able to get near her
best. After a decent start with 1.50m at High Jump for third she worked hard to
finish in seventh place in 2,490 points. She will look to improve once she is
fully fit later in the season.
In the Girls
Group D competition Jessica Hanson and Molly Sullivan, two Central athletes
from Dollar Academy were taking part. Jessica set personal bests at 75 Metres Hurdles
(13.91s), Long Jump (4.16m), High Jump (1.29m) and 800 Metres (2:59.24) for a personal
best score 1,834 points for 13th. Molly set personal bests at 75 Metres Hurdles
(15.43s), High Jump (1.11m), Long Jump (3.85m) and 800 Metres (2:50.14) for a personal
best score of 1,499 points for 14th place.
athletes were out in force at the East District championships at Grangemouth. This
is the first championships of the outdoor season and is a good steppingstone
for athletes between club and national level events. It is also a good
opportunity for athletes to try and win a first ever championship medal and two
of Central’s Under-13 athletes took that opportunity to get on the podium.
McCulloch had a busy day taking on three events. He started the day in the best
way possible with an excellent silver medal in the 75 Metres Hurdles, running a
personal best 14.02 seconds. He added a further personal best 13.94s in his 100
Metres heat before finishing seventh in the final in 14.37s. And he finished
the day strongly with another good performance in the Shot Put, throwing 5.67m
to just miss a medal in fourth.
was also on the podium for the first time ever in the 100 Metres. In her heat,
she dipped under 14 seconds for the first time ever with a personal best 13.82s,
then followed this up with 13.94s in the final to take the bronze medal. She returned
the next day for the 200 Metres, running a big personal best 28.48s, nearly a
second faster than her previous best, to qualify for the final. The final was a
fast race and she finished a creditable fifth in 28.93s. Her 200 Metres personal
best earned her a silver running grade on the club standards scheme which,
together with her jumps and throws grades over the season lifted to the overall
gold award standard for the season.
and Lewis Miller were both unlucky not to get on the podium after several near
misses between them. In the 800 Metres, Jamie ran a personal best 2:27.77 to
take fourth place. In the Long Jump it was Lewis’s turn to place fourth with a
jump of 4.07m just ahead of Jamie who was fifth in a personal best 4.06m. In
the 100 Metres, Lewis ran a season’s best 13.91s for fifth and then, the
following day, in the 200 Metres Jamie was yet again just run out of a medal
with a personal best of 29.16s. Jamie and Lewis can be proud of setting several
personal bests for top five positions in all their events.
Middleton just missed his personal best by a whisker in placing a creditable fifth
in the 1,500 Metres with 5:13.69. Erin Partridge made a welcome return to
competition after a year’s injury lay off with personal bests at both Long Jump
with 3.82m for seventh, and 100 Metres with 14.81s.
There was a
large contingent of Central’s Under-15 athletes out at the East District
championships and they were rewarded with seven medals and many new best
was in seventh heaven after winning her first ever individual medal with a
superb victory in the 800 Metres. The 14-year-old from Stirling timed her run
perfectly after sitting on the shoulder of the race leader to storm past in the
home straight and hold off the opposition all the way to the line to take the
gold medal. Her time of 2:25.64 was a season’s best, just outside her personal
best, but in a championship it is the gold medal that matters far more than the
Fowler was also winning her first ever medal in the 100 Metres. The 14-year-old
from Callander started well, smashing her personal best in the heats to dip
below 13 seconds with 12.97s. She then ran an even swifter 12.93s in the final
to take third place and the bronze medal and earn herself a bronze standard on
the club awards scheme.
was Central’s most prolific medal winner of the weekend. Scott, from Callander,
is no stranger to the podium after numerous medals in jumps and throws. He
started as comfortable winner in the Shot Put after opening with 12.07m to take
him 4 metres clear of the opposition before improving this in the final round with
12.54m to take his first gold of the weekend. He returned the next day for the
Javelin where he was similarly dominant, opening with 37.81m, and finishing
with a superb personal best of 45.48m to win the gold medal and go top of the
Scottish rankings and earn another gold standard on the club awards scheme. Scott
finished with the High Jump where he came close to his personal best with a
jump of 1.66m to add a silver medal and end with a tally of 3 medals.
was also on great form in the 800 Metres as he ran a personal best 2:10.38 to
place third in a fast race and take the bronze medal, his first medal at the Under-15
Carroll rounded off the medal tally for the club in the Triple Jump where she hop,
step and jumped her way to the bronze medal with a leap of 9.76m for third. While
this jump was over the wind limit so not eligible for records, her next best
jump of 9.63m was legal and broke the club outdoor record she set last season. She
will look to take the outdoor record beyond her indoor best 9.88m set earlier
this year. Earlier, Louise just missed out on the medals in the High Jump. A first-time
clearance of 1.44m was enough for sixth place however there was frustration for
her as she was unable to clear 1.49m, despite of some close attempts at a
height she has cleared previously. This frustration was exacerbated when 1.49m
ended up being the winning height, meaning she was just one jump from gold.
many other fine performances. Ruaridh Burns took fourth place in the Long Jump
with 4.84m then set a personal best in the 1,500 Metres with 5:13.76. Brogan
MacMillan had a busy weekend as she placed fifth at 800 Metres with 2:45.36,
ran 16.21s at 75 Metres Hurdles then finished with a season’s best 31.05s at
the 200 Metres.
The girls’ Shot
Put saw two Central athletes in action as Ellen Montgomery placed fifth with
6.96m just ahead of Megan Dunlop who threw 6.38m for sixth. Ellen showed her
versatility as she jumped 3.81m at Long Jump and ran a season’s best 14.20s for
75 Metres Hurdles. Megan ran a good personal best in the 100 Metres with
Docherty ran a respectable 2:20.89 at 800 Metres to qualify for the final where
he placed seventh. Finlay Marchant also reached the final in the 100 Metres
after running a near personal best 12.97s in the heats then placing eighth in a
fast final. And rounding off the Central success were Mirren Henry and Summer
McLean who both set personal bests in the 1,500 Metres, where Mirren ran
5:09.05 for seventh just ahead of Summer who ran 5:13.76 for 12th.
further medals for Central in the Under-17 age group. This age group was
affected by the championships falling in the middle of the SQA exam season but
a few athletes managed to pull themselves away from their studies to come out
highlight came from Lucy More who finally won her first ever individual medal
in the 200 Metres. The 16-year-old from Aberfoyle has competed for Central for
many years and won several medals in relay events. However an individual podium
spot had so far eluded her. She started the weekend well with a personal best
in the 100 Metres of 13.22s for fifth. However in the 200 Metres she found
herself in a battle for third place. She held her nerve and crossed the line in
27.42s for a bronze medal, a well-deserved reward after years of hard work and dedication
to the club.
Cook is a seasoned competitor with numerous medals to her name including the
Celtic Games title and UK silver medal last summer. She has just moved up an
age group and opened her outdoor season in the 80 Metres Hurdles with a strong
run of 12.05s to take the gold medal and earn a silver standard on the club
opened his outdoor season in the 1,500 Metres, keeping with the leaders in a
tactical race until the final lap when the pace quickened. He finished with
4:18.18 for fourth but will look to improve before his next outing. And Naomi
Howlieson placed a respectable fifth in the Discus with 17.94m.
Senior and Under-20s Scottish National Open
younger age groups were competing for district honours, the Senior and Under-20
athletes were taking part in the Scottish National Open, a new format of event
bringing together all the top athletes from Scotland. There were no medals at stake,
but the athletes had the opportunity to put in good performances and, for the
top athletes, to put their case for selection for Scotland in the upcoming
sprinters and jumpers were at Grangemouth where Peter Muirhead showed a return
to form in the Long Jump. The 25-year-old Stirling University student and long-time
Central AC member jumped an excellent season’s best 7.29m, his best jump for three
years for second place overall. And in his six jump series the former Scottish
senior indoor champion produced a wind-legal 7.16m which places him fifth in
the Scottish rankings for the year to give notice that he is back to his best. Masters
athlete Ron Todd took an excellent third in the Pole Vault with 3.20m. Balfron
schoolgirl Elizabeth Thompson found it tough in her first senior championship
but opened her outdoor season with a respectable 60.23s in the women’s 400
Metres. And Keiran Halliday continued his consistent form in the 200 Metres
Kilmarnock, where the endurance events were being held, Lauren McCulloch was
Central’s sole competitor in the 1,500 Metres where she came away with an
excellent third place and personal best of 4:50.32 minutes.
was an excellent weekend for the club with 22 new personal best performances. Well
done to all.
A busy weekend of athletics started on Friday 3 May with the Scottish Championships 5 Kilometre Road Race at Silverknowes, Edinburgh. The highlight of the evening for Central Athletic Club was a fine gold medal performance from Morag Millar taking the title with a 15 minutes 49 seconds timing, a new course record by 18 seconds.
“I am delighted with that run and to get a National Championship title once again to my name,’ said Morag.
“The Course Record was actually mine a few years ago and then I remember Maddie Murray coming along in 2016 and running 16.07 to take it away from me. So to get that back and get well under 16 minutes is really pleasing.
“I’m in good shape at the moment and it has all just rolled on from Falkirk and the National Cross Country when I won bronze. Lewis and I live near Alloa so we did the half marathon there but other than that and Run Balmoral last week then this was the race I was wanting to target in a big way and that has paid off.
“I’m 33 but I feel with the lay-offs I have had, my legs are a lot younger. Maybe not quite 21 but you get what I mean!
“It’s always a great race at Silverknowes, even when it is windy, although I did have to jump out the way of a bin in the mad dash at the start. But that mad dash always gives people a great start and helps times.”
Morag’s run helped Central lift team silver medals with further strong
runs from Natalie Stewart (17th; 17.56) and Lauren McCulloch (23rd; 18.13),
with Lauren also picking up second place in the Under-20 category.
There were also fine performances from Central’s men with Alastair Hay
(9th; 14.50), Jack Kerr (30th; 15.29) and Lewis Millar (34th; 15.35) missing
out on team bronze by just one point. There was however a further top position
for Central with Ben MacMillan finishing second in the Under-17 race with a
high quality 15.09 clocking in 16th place overall.
Saturday 4 May saw Central Athletic Club men’s team competing
at the first match of the Scottish Division One Track and Field League with
both athletes and officials sheltering from cold northerly winds.
With the normal league format the first track event, the 400
Metres Hurdles, saw David Lindsay again showing good form over the hurdles to
land sixth ‘A’ place with 67.10 seconds. The 800 Metres saw Matthew Sutherland
shake off tiredness after his victory in the previous weekend’s Stirling Half
Marathon and his 5 kilometre race from the previous evening to clock 2 minutes 6.94
seconds for seventh place in the ‘A’ race. It was good to see Ian Horsburgh
showing great form to record fifth in a high quality 100 Metres with 11.48s,
backed up by Cameron Smith with a further excellent clocking of 11.81s for
third in the ‘B’ race. Michael Wright proved how well he had recovered from his
Scottish Marathon victory to lead in the field in the 3,000 Metres Steeplechase
clocking 9:39.84 while David Lindsay again proved his worth to the team in
winning the ‘B’ event with 10:50.62. Under-17 athlete Erik Escala showed his
maturity in finishing second in the 400 Metres ’A’ race, clocking 53.51s in difficult
conditions. The 1,500 Metres saw well-judged performances from Jack Kerr and
Ben MacMillan, fresh from their previous night’s exploits. Jack took the ‘A’
race in 4:07.65 with Ben winning the ‘B’ race in 4:12.86 for his first men’s league
points. The 200 Metre series saw Ian Horsburgh and Cameron Smith back on the
track with Ian picking up third ‘A’ points in a tasty 22.89s and Cameron in
fifth ‘B’ spot with 24.11s. The 5,000 Metres saw Michael Wright again prove his
value to the team with a second place ‘A’ run of 15:58.34 while Under-20 runner
Hamish Hickey picked up second place ‘B’ points in 16:53.32.
In the field the throwing duties were covered once again by Ron
Todd recording a Discus best of 26.37 metres; an 8.38m Shot Put; a 32.60m Javelin
throw and completed a busy day with a Hammer throw of 24.66m picking up
excellent points in all events. The pole vaulters had to compete against the
cold wind but came through with flying colours with Erik Escala hitting a new
personal best of 3.30m to win the ‘A’ event while Ron Todd provided a win in
the ‘B’ event with a clearance of 3.20m. It was good to see Peter Muirhead heading
back to top performances in the Long Jump with a best effort of 7.06m and a win
in the event.
The 4 x 100 Metres Relay quartet of Ian Horsburgh, Peter Muirhead, Erik Escala and Under-17 debutant Adam McGregor brought the baton home in a tasty 46.6s for fifth spot. The 4 x 400 Metres Relay quartet of Ben MacMillan, David Lindsay, Hamish Hickey and Jack Kerr had to battle all the way to the line to take sixth spot recording 4:02 with a fine effort from Jack on the final leg.
As always there was great back-up from the club’s officials
through Richard O’Grady, John Dickson, Tom McMenemy and Bill Gault.
Points on the day were Aberdeen 366; Shettleston 287;
Edinburgh 239; Central 221; Falkirk 220; Inverness 219; Corstorphine 191 and Victoria
Park Glasgow 124, proving once again the value of every point.
Central Athletic Club’s women took the Scottish Road Relay
Championship title with some fine running as they took back the title last won
by the Club in 2017.
Under-20 runner, Rebecca Craig was new to the event and faced the first 3.1 mile leg and held the Central team well in contention in fourth place in a time of 18 minutes 18 seconds. Jennifer Wetton was next on the 5.8 mile long leg, with her time of 35.06 holding the team in sixth place, crucially just 1 minute 15 seconds down on the lead. This was the launch pad for Morag Millar to sweep through the leaders on the third leg with the fastest short lap of the day, with her 17.04 bringing the team into a 20 second lead. Fanni Gyurko had the last of 4 laps for the women, and held her form with a fine 34.07 leg (sixth fastest long leg). Behind her, other medal contenders shifted positions, but did little to threaten the lead with Central finishing with a 54 second lead and a winning time of 1:44:45. Despite a blustery day this was the fourth fastest finishing time in 22 years of the event, with two of these already held by Central.
Central’s Women’s B team was also stacked with experience with three of the team being previous medallists. Claire Houston led the team off with 19.59 to bring the team round in 15th place. Lauren McCulloch continued with a strong leg in 37.17 and holding 15th place. Fiona Thompson made her competitive return after a period out, running a fine 19.42 and bringing the team up to tenth place. Lyndsay Morrison returned to competition after having a baby, and provided a strong 36.52 long lap and brought the team home in ninth place out of the 32 complete teams finishing.
Central’s men faced the traditional format of 6 stages, on
the same course used by the women, with alternating short and long legs. It was
Iain Davies who led the team off with another strong effort to bring the A team
round in second place with his 15.38 effort and the fifth fastest short leg of
the day. The always reliable Michael Wright picked up the second leg challenge
to keep the Club in second place with a fine 30.08 long leg. Murray MacLarty
(16.25) produced another solid performance on the second of the short legs with
the team slipping to fourth overall. Scott Brember (31.16) brought his
experience to bear on the second of the long legs with the team now in fifth. Lewis
Millar (16.14) produced a sound effort with the team now in sixth overall and it
was left to Dale Colley to round off the A team’s effort as he finished
strongly with 30.17 and the team finishing fifth with an overall time of 2:19:38,
some 3 minutes behind winners Cambuslang Harriers.
Central’s B team featured a mixture of youth and experience
with three Under-20 runners, Tom Graham-Marr, Sandy Holl and Telfer Gray
stepping up to the challenge. Chris McHardy (18.12) led the team off, followed
in turn by Jack Kerr (33.22), Tom Graham-Marr (16.30), Sandy Holl (31.59),
Fraser Logan (17.59) and Telfer Gray (33.51) with placings fluctuating
throughout, but a worthy 22nd place overall and a finishing time of 2:34:52.
Central’s C team was also the Club’s Masters team with David
Eckersley (18.41), Ewan Jack (34.16), Charles Graham-Marr (20.37), Colin
Alexander (39.38), Jens Subke (20.07) and Ian Dunsmore (37.30). One of the
highlights from the team’s effort was a superb uphill sprint finish by Iain to
ensure the team finished in 2:40:49, 44th overall and fifth Master’s team,
another all-round sound effort. It was good to see Central field four complete
men’s teams with some of the D team rolling back the years. Here it was Cameron
Campbell (23.21) who led off the effort followed by Colin Sinclair (45.53),
John Millar (27.04), Allan Gall (45.10), Raymond Milne (24.18) and Ben Noad
(41.18) giving the team a time of 3:27:04 and a competent 58th place.
The final race of Central Athletic Club’s cross country series was held in King’s Park, Stirling on Saturday 23 March with good underfoot conditions for the 42 young endurance runners.
there was a fast pace throughout the one mile challenge as once again the
talented Under-13 Connor Bell underlined his superb recent form to win in an
excellent 4 minutes 53 seconds. Joshua Kennedy again proved to be the fastest
of the remaining Under-13 Boys, recording a tasty 5 minutes 19 seconds to head
in further strong runs from Alex Dunlop (5.40), Andrew Twigg (6.02) and Scott
Hill (6.59). Under-13 Boys series trophy winners were Connor Bell, Joshua
Kennedy and Scott Hill.
showed significant improvement from 2018 to win the Under-15 Boys race with 4.58,
just ahead of another top performance from Euan Docherty (4.59) with Finlay
Brown (5.29) and the ever-present Ross Lawrie (5.45) rounding off this age
group with Ryan and Ross winning the Under-15 Boys series trophies. Oliver
Holden finished in 5.02 to win the Under-17 Boys category and lift this age
group’s series trophy with his consistent performances.
(5.18) again proved to be the top Under-11 Boy runner heading home strong
efforts from Jack Sutton (5.37) and Fergus Young (5.57). This popular age group
also produced highly competitive running from Scott Cramb (6.00), Lewis Hendry
(6.03), Lewis Cook (6.10), Jamie Connor (6.14), Logan Bell (6.16), Finlay
MacGregor (6.19), Gavin Young (6.20), Noah Kennedy (6.23), Conall Paterson
(6.43), Callum Harvey (6.45), Magnus Carrie (6.47) and Cameron Moore (7.12). The
three Under-11 Boy series trophy winners were Ray Taylor, Jack Sutton and
Fergus Young. The Under-9 Boys saw further enthusiastic performances with Rocco
Cramb (6.18) heading home Joel Gillan (6.23) while Joel prevailed in the
showed top form to lead in the Under-13 Girls in 5.28 with Leona Melville
(5.41) in close attendance. Scarlett Roy (6.15) also finished strongly to head
in Leah Brown (6.17), Katy Cullen (6.21) and Erin Partridge (6.34) while Leona,
Mirren and Leah won the series trophies for the Under-13 Girls. Summer MacLean
proved her speed and endurance credentials to win the Under-15 Girls race in 5.46
to head Ellen Montgomery (6.42) with both girls taking the series trophies in
this age group.
McKinlay (5.53) produced another competitive and assured performance to head
the Under-11 Girls age group with more useful performances from Dara Clark
(6.31), Emma Anderson (6.33), Fia Watkin (6.43) and Willow Hopper (7.14). Holly
Sutton (9.44) suffered somewhat in the latter part of the race so testament to
her perseverance to complete the course. It was Niamh, Dara and Emma who won
the Under-11 Girls series trophies. Under-9 Girl, Alexandra Montgomery can be
proud of her 8.08 effort and her series award in this age group.
another large turnout of Club volunteers and parents to ensure this was another
Central AC had a huge representation at the Scottish Combined Events Championships at the Glasgow Emirates arena. In the last big domestic event before the venue hosted the European Indoor Championships, 24 of Central’s athletes tested themselves across the disciplines of running, jumping and throwing.
Central’s challenge was led by the older athletes in the Under-20 and Under-17 age groups. Matthew Chandler was Central’s most experienced competitor with numerous internationals and medals at Scottish and UK level over the years. The 18-year-old from Balfron was contesting the Under-20 Men’s Heptathlon, the indoor equivalent of the decathlon, which is contested over 2 days. He opened well with 7.58s for the 60 Metres and then set an excellent personal best 6.77m at Long Jump to go fifth on the club indoor all-time list. Another personal best 10.69m came at Shot Put then a decent 1.83m High Jump saw Matt in third place at the end of the first day. He opened well in the second day with a near personal best 8.68s at 60 Metres Hurdles which moved him up to second place overall. He followed this with an excellent season’s best 4.17m at Pole Vault to consolidate his second place position then finished with a personal best 2:49.35 minutes at 1,000 Metres. He was unable to catch Scott Connal of Whitemoss, who won in a new Scottish junior record, but Matt was rewarded with a silver medal and a superb personal best 4,882 points to go seventh on the Scottish all-time list for the age group.
Erik Escala was contesting his first ever
Heptathlon in the Under-17 age group. The 16-year-old from Dunblane started
strongly with a big personal best 7.68s in the 60 Metres then followed this
with a 5.45m Long Jump. He threw 11.11m in the Shot Put which, while an
excellent distance, was down on the 12.43m personal best he set the week before
to win a medal at the Scottish schools. However he made up for this with a big High
Jump personal best of 1.80m to place him fourth overnight. Further personal
bests followed in the 60 Metres Hurdles (9.13s) and Pole Vault (2.87m), a
relatively new event for him. He rounded off his weekend with another personal
best 3:15.94 at 1,000 Metres to finish an excellent fourth place, just outside
the medals, with 3,889 points.
Molly Cornes was taking on the Under-17 women’s
pentathlon. The 14-year-old from Balfron had a cold to contend with but stuck
to the task as she opened with personal bests in both the Shot Put (8.72m) and 60
Metres Hurdles (10.01s). She produced another strong Long Jump (4.98m) then
followed this with an excellent personal best clearance of 1.60m in the High
Jump which places her fifth on the club women’s indoor all-time list. By the 800
Metres her illness started to tell leaving her unable to challenge for the
medals but she finished in 2:47.12 for a final score of 2,940 points. This was
a 400 point personal best but such was the high standard this was only enough
for seventh overall. Matt will look to build on this and Molly and Erik will
look to learn from their experience and hopefully they will all challenge for
medals in the summer.
Central had a large contingent of 11 Under-15 boys
and girls taking part in the pentathlon, many of them for the first time.
In the boys’ event, Ruaridh Burns and Tyler
Hunter were both novices at the pentathlon. Ruaridh had a strong start in the Long
Jump with a personal best 4.90m for fifth place while Tyler jumped 3.96m. In
the 60 Metres Hurdles it was Tyler’s turn to impress in his first ever hurdles
race as he won his heat in 10.63s with Ruaridh running 11.20s. In the High Jump
Tyler cleared a personal best 1.34m then Ruaridh jumped 1.37m in his first ever
attempt at the event. The Shot Put was a new event to both of them, Tyler threw
6.16m and Ruaridh 7.12m. In the final 800 Metres event Ruaridh showed his form
in his specialist event as he ran clear in his heat to win in an excellent
personal best 2:18.70, the second fastest time of the day with Tyler following
in 2:55.98. At the end Ruaraidh scored 1,781 points for a respectable sixth and
Tyler 1,244 points for 10th.
Central had an incredible nine athletes
competing, all setting a host of new personal best performances. Top finisher
was Katherine Fowler. The day didn’t all go to plan for her as her opening High
Jump of 1.28m was 20cm short of the 1.48 that earned fifth at the recent
individual Scottish champs. However she recovered well to win her 60 Metres Hurdles
heat in a personal best 10.79s then set further personal bests at Long Jump
(4.64m) and 800 Metres 2:36.95 and a season’s best Shot Put (6.03m) to score 2,305
points for 16th. One place behind was Louise Carroll who opened well with 1.40m
at High Jump then set personal bests at Long Jump (4.49m), Shot Put (7.26m) and
a season’s best 800 Metres (2:52.04) for a personal best score 2,299 points for
Amy Cully set personal bests at 60 Metres Hurdles
(11.12s) and High Jump (1.31m) and season’s bests at Long Jump (3.86m) and 800
Metres where she was a clear heat winner in 2:29.73 to score a personal best 2,237
for 18th place.
For Ellen Montgomery there were personal bests
at 60 Metres Hurdles (10.85s), Long Jump (3.86m) and Shot Put (7.20m) for a personal
best score of 1,863 points. Ella Wilson had a fantastic start in her first ever
pentathlon winning her pool in her High Jump debut with an excellent jump of 1.43m.
She followed this with personal bests in 60 Metres Hurdles (12.51s) and Shot
Put (7.44m) along with a 4.08m Long Jump for a score of 1,840 points.
Brogan MacMillan set personal bests at 60
Metres Hurdles (12.52s), Long Jump (3.48m) and Shot Put (6.01m) for a score of
1,490 points. Megan Dunlop produced personal bests at 60 Metres Hurdles
(12.52s), High Jump (1.34m) and Long Jump (3.23m) for a personal best score of
For Molly Sullivan and Zosia Paddon every event
was a new experience for them. They completed all the events and finished with
scores of 1,133 for Zosia and 1,014 for Molly. All in all the Under-15s set 47
new personal bests including 22 new events attempted, an excellent result for
Central had 10 Under-13 athletes taking part
every one of them attempting a pentathlon for the first time ever. The boys’
event featured Dylan McCulloch, Henry Crossley and Alex Dunlop. Dylan opened
well in the Shot Put with a personal best 6.39m to go into fourth place. Alex
threw 4.64m and Henry 3.90m. In the hurdles Dylan was a clear winner of his
heat in his first ever attempt at the event with an excellent 11.16s, the third
fastest of the day, to move him into third place. Alex finished in 13.72s and
Henry 15.13s. In the High Jump there were personal bests all round as Alex and
Dylan cleared 1.08m and Henry 1.02m. Further personal bests came from all three
on the Long Jump, Dylan jumped 4.14m for third place in the event, Henry 3.15m
and Alex 3.01m. In the final 800 Metres event Alex set a personal best 2:48.17
to place second in his heat and finish on a score of 559 points while Henry
finished in 2:57.85 for a final score of 377 points. As Dylan was in fifth
place he ran in the final race for the event leaders to decide the medals. He
was unable to catch the top three, but still ran a decent 2:43.67 minutes which
gave him a final score of 1,143 points and maintained his fifth place position,
an excellent result against the best in Scotland.
The girls’ event saw a big field of 37 athletes
taking part. Danielle Abel led the Central athletes, clearing 1.20m at High
Jump and winning her heat comfortably in the 60 Metres Hurdles with a personal
best 10.54s. She then set a personal best at Long Jump (4.06m) and 800 Metres
(3:03.12) to finish with a score of 1,840 points for 15th overall. Just behind
her was Jessica Hanson who started with an excellent 1.29m High Jump then ran
11.32s at 60 Metres Hurdles, threw 5.68m at Shot Put, jumped 3.78m at Long Jump
and ran 3:00.34 at 800 Metres to score 1,756 points for 17th. Niamh MacKinlay
set personal bests at High Jump (1.11m), 60 Metres Hurdles (12.54s), Long Jump
(3.43m) and was a clear heat winner in the 800 Metres with a personal best
2:44.79 to score 1,394 points for 27th. Loren Stewart opened with a big personal
best at High Jump with 1.23m then set a season’s best 4.73m at Shot Put and a
good 3.85m Long Jump to score 1,302 points. Emily Guest cleared a personal best
1.17m at High Jump but her hopes of a good score were dashed when she was
unable to finish the hurdles. She stuck to the task and set personal bests at Long
Jump (3.96m) and Shot Put (6.39m) to score 1,256 points in spite of her no
score in the hurdles.
Connie Bateman set personal bests in High Jump
(1.08m), 60 Metres Hurdles (12.62s) and Shot Put (4.39m) for a score of 998
points and Alice Cameron long jumped (2.89m) and ran 3:15.6 at 800 Metres on
the way to a score of 800 points.
The Under-13s set 40 new personal bests
including 25 events attempted for the first time, an experience they will all
The penultimate race in Central Athletic Club’s cross country
series was played out over a muddy and testing course close to the Callander
Crags car park. The 33 participants all made light of the conditions with the
general opinion that the runners had enjoyed the tough course of somewhat over
Under-15 Euan Docherty (7 minutes 4 seconds) has been
running well all season and here broke away to record a comfortable win with a
powerful effort on the final climb. Ross Lawrie (8.31) has supported all the
races in the series and here finished as second Under-15 with another gutsy
The Under-13 Boys were led home by Joshua Kennedy with
another impressive run (7.14) while Aaron Middleton (7.38) and Alex Dunlop
(7.58) also showed their normal strong commitment. There were further eye
catching runs in this age group from Andrew Twigg (8.26), Henry Crossley
(8.29), Angus Kennedy (10.13) and Scott Hill (10.36).
It was Oliver Holden who again finished as first Under-17 in
7 minutes 32 seconds from Lloyd Raymond (8.47) while there were more top
performances from the Under-11s with Jack Sutton (8.00) well to the fore to
lead this age group from Fergus Young (8.34), Jamie Connor (8.43), Lewis Cook
(8.48), Finlay MacGregor (8.49) and Jake Drummond (8.51). There were further
gutsy runs from Noah Kennedy (9.08), Gavin Young (9.17), Cameron Moore (9.22),
Oliver Brunner (9.39) and Joe Marshall (12.25). Joel Gillan was the sole Under-9
Boy and looks a future prospect, finishing in a fine 9 minutes 16 seconds.
Leona Melville led the Under-13 Girls home with an excellent
8.01 run with Leah Brown (8.46), Erin Partridge (9.41), Robyn Youens (9.57) and
Grace Johnstone (12.07) all showing top commitment over this demanding course. Niamh
McKinlay was again first Under-11 Girl with a tasty 8.37 clocking leading in
Dara Clark (9.18), Fia Watkin (9.23), Tabatha MacKenzie (9.50) and Willow
Hopper (11.09) with all the girls finishing well.
Thanks are due to the Callander coaches for organising an excellent event and the series concludes in Kings Park, Stirling on the morning of Saturday 23 March.
Central AC made it a record breaking nine successive team victories in the senior men’s race at the Lindsays National Cross Country Championships at Callendar Park, Falkirk. Other notable achievements were an individual bronze for Morag Millar in the senior women and among the Under-20 Men an individual bronze for Hamish Hickey and a team bronze. Images by Bobby Gavin.
With the record on the line, there was much pressure to win again and take
the record outright in the last and biggest race of the day, with over 700
runners. There was strong opposition expected in particular from Cambuslang
Harriers and Inverclyde AC, with a number of top international runners on show.
The competition proved as tough as expected but it was Central’s strength in
depth that shone through to ensure the team title was retained and the record
claimed. Central’s top counter on the day was the consistent Alastair Hay in eighth
with a fine 35 minutes 12 seconds clocking over the undulating 10 kilometre
course. Cameron Milne ran strongly throughout to finish tenth (35.28) while
Conan McCaughey (14th; 35.47) again proved essential to the team effort. Dale
Colley (15th; 35.50) showed superb form while more top performances from
Michael Wright (21st; 36.09) and Iain Davies (32nd; 36.45) saw the Club close
in with 100 points, ahead of Cambuslang on 142 and Inverclyde on 146. Mention
must be made of coach Derek Easton who has overseen this superb run of wins
pulling together large teams of all abilities, but with cutting edge quality,
determination and team spirit at the front of the race.
As the senior runners came through in a seemingly never-ending stream the essential back-up was provided from Scottish Veteran Champion Scott Brember (49th; 37.36) and ultra-running specialist Ross Houston (54th; 37.46). Matthew Sutherland (61st; 38.07), Jack Kerr (63rd; 38.08), and Murray MacLarty (72nd; 38.24) should all be pleased with their runs and commitment. Lewis Millar (137th; 40.26) bridged the gap to Alex Milne (259th; 43.49), David Eckersley (274nd; 44.15), Iain Dunsmore (368th; 46.22), Jens Subke (375th; 46.32) and Hugh Buchanan (394th; 47.09). Ben Noad (422nd; 47.50) had an improved run leading in Talat Aidi (457th; 48.26); Colin Alexander (529th; 50.04), Charles Graham-Marr (558th; 50.50), Allan Gall (638th; 53.47), Cameron Campbell (655th; 54.39) and Colin Sinclair (692nd; 58.06).
Central’s women’s team took on the challenge of the same 10km course as the men, with over 300 finishers and a new requirement for five team counters. In the individual battle for the title 2017 champion Morag Millar ran strongly throughout for her 39.00 timing and was always in the running for medals in a group of four, but had to give way to Steph Twell, an experienced Olympian, and Czech international and Prague-based Moira Stewart. Fanni Gyurko, Central’s Dunblane-based Hungarian athlete, put in a strong performance for 9th place with 41.14 with Kim Timmins (40th; 45.18), Amy Hendry (82nd; 48.06), Claire Houston (91st; 48.48) and Becky Hay (147th; 52.19) bringing in the team to a creditable 6th place.
Central’s Under-20 Men all looked pleased with their efforts
as Hamish Hickey’s fine 25 minutes 13 seconds run over the 7.5 kilometre course
was rewarded with an individual bronze. Bronze team medals were a further
reward through more excellent runs from Tom Graham-Marr (15th; 26.15), Sandy
Holl (19th; 26.28) and Keir Howlieson (48th; 29.30). Just missing out on a team
medal Telfer Gray’s 30.39 effort in 58th place proved another valuable
Central’s Under-20 Women were close to medals over the same
course. Lauren McCulloch was justifiably pleased with her 4th place with 30.02
with Rebecca Craig (14th; 31.03) and Abby Rowley (26th; 34.42) coming close to
a team medal as they finished fourth.
The Under-17 Men’s race was held over a 6 kilometre test
with Kyle Howie finishing 61st in 25 minutes 21 seconds and will have learned
much in stepping up to this high level as will Sam Burton (91st; 27.54).
The Under-15 Boys faced a 4.1 kilometre course and here it
was Finlay Muir who again led Central’s Team effort in 27th (15.30) while Euan
Docherty (78th; 16.44) and Ross Lawrie (137th; 19.05) both ran well in their
first year in this age group.
In the Under-15 Girls, it was a fine race by Grace Tindall for 25th in 17.20, Summer McLean (48th; 18.08) and Heidi Maxwell (90th; 19.51) as they tackled the same tough 4.1 kilometre course.
Central’s Under-13 Girls were the first race at the start of the day, over a 3.1 kilometre hilly course. The girls came close to the podium with 4th team place through Carys Gibb (21st; 13.50), Leona Melville (29th; 14.06), Mirren Henry (32nd; 14.11), Catriona Kane (34th; 14.16), Mary Kealey (110th; 16.26), Zosia Paddon (111th; 16.30) and Brogan McMillan (112th; 16.32).
The Under-13 Boys raced over the same course as the Girls and Connor Bell was always to the fore in a four athlete breakaway group. Connor made a strong effort on the final uphill stretch but had to settle for an agonisingly close fourth place in an excellent 11 minutes 43 seconds. In this highly competitive age group there were more strong runs from Aaron Middleton (46th; 13.22), Joshua Kennedy (49th; 13.25), Ruairidh Burns (55th; 13.28), Sam Gardner (81st; 13.48), Alex Dunlop (121st; 14.20) and Henry Crossley (155th; 15.23) and we can expect more from all the boys in the future. Central finished as fifth placed team.
The Central AC Cross Country
Championships were held on an extended and more testing course at Queen
Victoria School, Dunblane on Saturday 16 February. As in 2018, the excellent
weather didn’t completely compensate for the challenging hills and burn
The Under-11 boys and girls raced
together over a 1.33 mile course with all 28 children showing tremendous
enthusiasm and resolve. Ray Taylor has been to the fore all season and here
showed great form to win in 9 minutes 5 seconds with Lewis Henry (9.41) and
Tyler Gibson (9.42) battling well to take silver and bronze medals. Scott Cram
(9.54) looked comfortable as he led home Finlay MacGregor (9.56), Fergus Young
(10.02), Lewis Cook (10.08) and Rory MacKay (10.14). Gavin Young (10.25) was
also to the fore ahead of Max Duncan (10.39), Logan Bell (11.09), Connall
Paterson (11.30), Sandy Bateman (11.35), Oliver Brunner (11.44) and Lewis
Cunkenbeard (11.51). Callum Whyte (12.00) was another to show true resolve as
did Cameron Moore (13.15) and Nathan McKay (15.10). There were two Under-9 Boys
competing with both Rocco Cram (10.21) and Gabriel Mullen (14.01) proving they
have what it takes to make an impression.
The Under-11 Girls saw Leya Gibb
take the trophy with an assured run, clocking 9.53. Dara Clark (10.30) came
home well to lift the silver medal while Fia Watkin (11.12) came through for
bronze ahead of determined running from Ciara Middleton (11.16), Isla Henry
(11.19) and Iona Griffen (11.34). It was good to see Arianne McKay and Hannah Whelan
supporting each other to the end with both girls recording 15.03.
The Under-13 race was held over
a 1.75 mile course and once again Connor Bell (10.52) showed great form
throughout to take the win with Aaron Middleton (11.46) picking up a deserved silver
ahead of a strong 12.02 clocking from Joshua Kennedy for bronze. Sam Gardener
(12.32), Owen Eckersley (13.18), Cian McDonnell (14.29), Edward Boyd (14.35),
Michael Arestis (15.57) and Scott Hill (16.37) all came home well overcoming
this tough test.
Melissa Turnbull (12.18) showed
her quality to repeat her gold medal victory from 2018 in the Under-13 Girls with
strong opposition from medallists Carys Gibb (12.36) and Catriona Kane (12.40).
Mirren Henry (12.48) was a close-up fourth ahead of further good runs from
Leona Melville (12.55), Tara Mathewson (13.55), Scarlett Roy (14.40) and Leah
The third race, over a two lap course of 2.67miles, saw
the Under-15 Boys and Girls run with the Under-20 Women. Finlay Muir produced
another good performance (16.47) to defend his Under-15 Boys title holding off another
fine run from Ryan McGuire (17.11). Central trialist Sam Grivell (19.02) also
ran well while Ethan Thomson (19.10) picked up the bronze medal ahead of Ross
Lawrie (21.19) and Enrique Mendez (21.32). Grace Tindall’s convincing 19.20
performance saw her carry off the Under-15 Girls trophy while another good
performance from Summer MacLean (20.00) took silver ahead of the improving
Heidi Eik-Maxwell’s 23.06 effort for bronze. Under-20s Rebecca Craig and Lauren
McCulloch have been to the fore all season and here produced further assured
runs to finish first and second respectively in 17.28 and 17.51.
The Under-17 Men ran with the Senior Men and Veteran Men
over 4 miles with a further set of quality runs throughout. Veteran runners
David Eckersley and Alex Milne rolled back the years as they vied for the lead
throughout with David (26.34) just taking victory from Alex (26.35) in the
final frantic sprint. Iain Dunsmore was a worthy bronze medallist with his
28.15 effort. Hugh Buchanan (28.47) should have been pleased with his
performance heading further strong runs from Jens Subke (29.09), Donald Shaw
(29.47), Colin Sinclair (32.55), Alan Gall (33.09) and Cameron Campbell (33.23).
It was good to see Ben Noad take home the Senior Trophy with a more than worthy
AC’s Under-13 athletes the Scottish indoor championships were all about
experience as for most of them it was their first taste of national
championship action. While no medals were won there were a few near misses and
2 club records broken.
performers were Carys Gibb from Dunblane and Magnus Bryce from Balfron. In the
1,500 Metres, the race started fast and gradually the lead group whittled down with
Carys in a group of just six. Three athletes broke clear towards the final lap and
Carys wasn’t able to follow but she picked up an excellent fourth place in a
time of 5:18.10 minutes, breaking a 20-year-old club record.
outside the medals in fourth was Magnus Bryce in the 200 Metres, running an
excellent 27.93 seconds. He had run even faster in his heat with 27.78 seconds which
broke a 15-year-old club record.
took on the High Jump where he was joined by Central teammate Tom Campbell. Both
athletes cleared 1.28m but couldn’t quite manage the 1.33m height required to
get in the medals. Tom placed sixth and Magnus seventh, respectable positions
in a national championship. Tom also placed 10th in the Shot Put with a throw
further sprint personal bests from Emily Guest and Danielle Abel. Emily ran a
big personal best 8.73 seconds in the 60 Metres to qualify for the semi-final
where she was joined by Danielle who also ran a personal best of 9.20 seconds. In
the semi-final Emily was just run out of a place in the final after placing 10th
fastest to miss out on qualification by two places.
Emily then set
another personal best in the 200 Metres sprinting 29.46s in the semi-final for
10th quickest again. Danielle went on to Long Jump where she set a season’s
best 3.96m for 10th.
Stewart placed 11th in the High Jump with a personal best 1.18m and Alice Cameron
ran an indoor best 34.03s in the 200 Metres.
Well done to
all the youngsters that took part.
Scottish Indoor Under-15 Championships
Emirates Arena, Sunday 3 February 2019
There were 2
gold medals for Central AC athletes in the Scottish indoor Under-15 championships
as Scott Hopper and Dorottya Csuta stepped on top of the podium.
Callander, started at the High Jump and after needing 3 attempts at 1.63m he
then soared clear at a new personal best 1.68m at the first time of asking, to
join 4 other athletes attempting 1.73m. Scott was unable to go higher, but with
only two athletes clear, countback was required to determine the bronze medal
between the three athletes tied on 1.68m. When the number of failures was
tallied Scott unfortunately missed out on the bronze by just one jump at lower
heights, but still finished in a respectable fifth place.
Scott was not finished yet and continued onto the Shot Put event where he
opened with a personal best 12.35m to open up a big lead. He went on to improve
this with a superb throw of 12.51m in round three to increase his lead which
was never challenged, earning Scott the Scottish gold medal. Scott has won
previous medals outdoors at Javelin and High Jump but this was his first ever
Shot Put medal and first indoor medal. His distance also earned him a gold
standard on the club awards scheme.
other gold medal came from Dorottya Csuta who has recently joined Central AC
from Hungary. Competing in the 1,500 Metres, Dorottya led from start to finish
to win clearly in 4:54.49 minutes.
out on the podium was Louise Carroll in the Triple Jump. The 14-year-old from
Balfron smashed her personal best with an excellent first round jump of 9.88m. Ultimately
she had to settle for fourth place in a high standard event which was won in a
new Scottish record, however she can be proud of her new personal best and new
club record which earned her a silver standard on the club awards scheme.
was also on good form in the High Jump where she jumped a new personal best
1.48m, but missed the bronze medal on countback, having taken one more attempt
than her opponents to clear 1.48m meaning she had to settle for fifth place.
Campbell set 2 new personal bests, firstly in the 60 Metre Hurdles with 10.39s
to qualify for the final where he finished seventh, then in the Long Jump where
4.64m earned him another seventh place finish.
progressing through the rounds were Finlay Marchant and Amy Cully. Finlay set a
new personal best in the 60 Metres with 8.33s to reach the semi-finals and Amy
ran 29.22s in the semi-finals of the 200 Metres.
numerous other personal bests. Ella Wilson set new best marks at both 60 Metres
with 9.05s and 200 Metres with 30.46s, Erin Millar ran an indoor best 48.54s in
the 300 Metres and Shannon Glen also set best marks at Shot Put (5.99m) and 300
Metres (55.03s). Brogan MacMillan ran 9.42s in her first 60 Metres, Ellen
Montgomery tested herself at 60 Metre Hurdles (11.07s) and 300m (50.10s) and
Hannah Tams took on the Long Jump (3.67m) and 200 Metres (29.91s).
Well done to
everyone for testing themselves against the best in Scotland.
Scottish Indoor Under-20 Championships
had three Under-20 athletes competing at Scottish indoor championships, all of
whom are experienced championship performers with Scottish titles and
internationals vests on their CVs.
was stepping up to the Under-20 age group and 3,000 Metres distance after
winning the Scottish indoor Under-17 1,500 Metres title last year. The 3,000
Metres championships took place in January at a British Milers Club event, when
Ben found himself up against European Youth 1,500 Metres champion Kane Elliot
of Falkirk. Ben stuck to the task and went round the 15 laps in 8:38.16 minutes
to win an excellent bronze medal. Ben was over the moon with his performance which
knocked half a minute off his personal best and broke the club Under-20 record.
Afterwards Ben said “I went into the race not expecting anything. I just wanted
a personal best racing as an Under-20, was extremely pleased with my time and
the medal was the icing on the cake.” A happy young man!
Thompson was returning to defend the Scottish junior 400 Metres title she won
last year and was also celebrating her 17th birthday. She looked comfortable in
her heat as she cruised through in 60.04s to book her place in the final. After
a fast paced first lap in the final, she found herself in fourth place at the
break from lanes. She fought hard in lap two but was unable to force her way past
the third placed athlete and had to settle for fourth in 58.93s.
Matt Chandler was also just out of the medals in the High Jump. Matt was clear
at every height up to 1.88m, but with three other athletes left in would have required
a new personal best 1.93m to get on the podium. He had some good attempts but had
to settle for fourth place. Matt will return for the Scottish combined events
championships next weekend.
positions will be frustrating for Elizabeth and Matt relative to their own high
standards but are excellent performances at Under-20 level where the standard
to get on the podium is much higher. They will both look to bounce back at
their next competitions.
I am delighted to be
joining Central Athletics Club as your new Club Together Officer.
I have been involved in
Sport and Sports Clubs from a very early age, competing, playing, coaching and
serving on various committees. I hope to use the experience that I have gained
and my passion for Sport in general, to assist with the Club’s ongoing
My career background is in Sales and Marketing in the
business to business and retail sales environments. However, for the past 6 and
a half years, I have been managing Bridge of Allan Sports Club. This has renewed
and fuelled my passion for Sport, working closely with Active Stirling, Tennis
Scotland, Scottish Squash, Club Coaches and the Committee, to help develop
those Sports and increase Membership at the Club.
I fully appreciate the importance of the volunteer
network within Clubs, from Committee Members through to coaching assistants and
parent helpers. I have served as Secretary, President and I am currently Chairperson
of Bridge of Allan Bowling Club and have coached Junior Rugby Teams at Stirling
County at age groups ranging from 7 up to 16 year olds.
In terms of my Sporting background, in my early
teenage years, I was a sprinter, hurdler and discus thrower, however, ball
sports and golf were my preferred sports. I worked at a golf course for 4 years
during school holidays and weekends, but my later teens drew me into Rugby. I
played at various levels for over 25 years in Birmingham and Shropshire,
finally finishing with a most enjoyable time in the Wolfhounds over 35’s team
at Stirling County. I am now a keen golfer again and have played bowls at
Bridge of Allan since moving to Scotland 29 years ago.
I suppose the reason for telling you this is to give
you some confidence in that I have always been a sportsman and have been around
teams, coaches, assistant coaches and volunteers for many years and understand
that these people are the lifeblood of any Sports Club. It is in the
recruitment of volunteers that I intend to work hard in order to assist in Central
Athletic Club’s development.
I look forward to meeting more of you throughout the
Central Athletic Club’s Scott Brember climbed to the top of the podium at the Scottish Masters Cross Country Championships in Hawick on Saturday 2 February. This event attracts the best Over-40 runners in Scotland with championship medals awarded in each of the 5 year age groups. Scott has been making progress all season and here ran a perfect tactical race, sitting in with a breakaway group of 4 and then unleashing an emphatic sprint finish to win quite comfortably against the top Masters in the country. Scott not only won his Over-45 age group but also won the overall race to join a select contingent of runners to complete this feat.
A testing and undulating course was on offer in Hawick and
the freezing temperatures also had to be endured so testament to Scott’s 3
seconds win ahead of a string of younger athletes and former champions.
Hazel Dean proved her consistency in also climbing on to the
podium to lift silver in the Women’s Over-55 age group, another great
achievement from this classy and dedicated competitor.
Iain Dunsmore should be pleased with his gutsy and determined run in the Over-45 age group while the Men’s race also featured a trio of Central runners in Over-50 and Over-60 age groups with a close personal battle between the threesome. Colin Sinclair led his team home ahead of Allan Gall and Cameron Campbell, a worthy effort from all as they finished fourteenth team in the Male 50 to 60 category.
There were a host of new personal best performances for Central AC’s athletes at the Scottish Under-17 indoor championships at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow on Saturday. Daniel Ferguson and Molly Cornes were the top performers as Central’s youngsters took on the best in Scotland.
Sprint hurdler, Daniel Ferguson is no stranger to top flight competition. The 16-year-old from Tullibody won a silver medal for Scotland at last year’s Celtic Games international. Daniel was contesting the 60 Metre Hurdles and looked strong in his heat as he qualified in 3rd place equalling his personal best of 8.87 seconds. It was a close contest with 5 athletes qualifying within 0.1s of each other. The final was a fast race and Daniel ran hard but couldn’t quite get into the medals, finishing in fourth place, but was rewarded with an excellent new personal best of 8.74s. Daniel also managed a season’s best 7.68s in the 60 Metres flat, just missing his personal best.
Molly Cornes was contesting the High Jump and Long Jump and had the challenge of a timetable clash between the 2 events. The 14-year-old from Balfron opted to focus on the High Jump and cleared every height up to 1.53 metres after which the bar was then raised to 1.58m, higher than her personal best of 1.55m. After a close first attempt she managed to go clear at the second attempt to set a new personal best. She had some good attempts at 1.63m but was unable to improve further and pleased to finish in seventh place.
went straight over to the Long Jump and having missed the first 2 rounds had
just one jump available to qualify for the top eight. She also had the
difficulty of having missed the warm up meaning she had not been able to check
her run up so had to trust the mark she had laid out. Thankfully the mark was
spot on and she nailed a massive personal best jump of 5.30m to put her in 7th
place and qualify for another 3 jumps. She was unable to improve on this position
but her 46cm personal best puts her 3rd on the club indoor all-time list and
earns her a silver standard on the club awards scheme.
Lois Burch is relatively inexperienced at this level but made big improvements in both the 60 Metre Hurdles and 200 Metres. The 15-year-old from Callander started with 9.71 seconds in the 60 Metre Hurdles which was a massive 0.66s personal best. This put her in 18th place but with eight English athletes ahead of her she was 10th fastest Scot. Also in the 60 Metre Hurdles, Coirilidh Cook was looking to get into the medals having won numerous titles at Under-15 last year including victory at the Celtic Games international. She looked comfortably won her heat in 9.17s, but in her semi-final caught the first hurdle leaving her unable to reach the final. Hurdlers always operate to fine margins and she will learn from this and look to get back to her best when she defends her Scottish Schools title in 2 weeks.
more to come from Lois as she took on the 200 Metres where she set another big
personal best of 27.50s, knocking 1.2s from her previous fastest. Also setting
a new mark in the 200 Metres was Mavia Duncan who ran a personal best 28.83s, a
two second improvement on her previous best.
Lucy More sprinted
well in the 60 Metres and having qualified for the semi-finals with 8.36s went
even faster in her semi-final with 8.29s, just missing her personal best.
There were several other good performances by Central athletes. Kyra Gibb set an indoor best in the 1,500 Metres of 5 minutes 0.6 seconds to qualify for her final. Shona McLay qualified for the 300 Metres semi-finals with a time of 43.99s and Rebecca Cumming took on the Triple Jump, placing a respectable 12th with 8.93m.
It was good
to see the Central athletes taking on the best in Scotland and the number being
rewarded with new personal bests.
The third race in Central Athletic Club’s 2018-19 cross-country
series was held on Saturday 26 January on a flat course at Fintry Rugby Club
with an excellent field of 50 runners from across the club. All the athletes
performed admirably in spite of the wet and windy conditions.
It was Under-15 runner Ryan McGuire who came home at the
front showing strong running throughout and covering a course of somewhat over
a mile in 5 minutes 59 seconds. Ross Lawrie, making light of the conditions,
came home second in this age group clocking 7.02. Connor Bell led home the Under-13
Boys with another fine run of 6.03 and there were further classy runs in this
age group from Joshua Kennedy (6.44), Alex Dunlop (7.12), Henry Crossley (7.28)
and Scott Hill (8.10). Oliver Holden (6.27) was the only Under-17 competing,
again coming home in overall contention.
The Under-11 Boys proved to be the most popular age group
and here Ray Taylor continued to underline his ability with a 6.38 effort. Jack
Sutton (6.45) was only a few strides behind with another strong run and there
was fast finishes from Scott Cramb and Douglas Stewart as both boys finished
with 7.15. Fergus Young (7.23), Lewis Henry (7.29), Logan Bell (7.30), Lewis
Cook (7.32), Euan Haythorne (7.33) and Jamie Connor (7.34) can all be proud of
their performances as can Finlay MacGregor (7.40), Noah Kennedy (7.43), Callum
Harvey (8.01), Conall Paterson (8.09), Sandy Bateman (8.14), Cameron Moore
(8.22), Evan Baird (9.00) and Nathan McKay (9.44). Rocco Cramb proved to be the
fastest of the Under-9 Boys with a fine run of 7.38, followed closely by
another good run from Joel Gillan (7.53).
The Under-13 Girls proved to be a very competitive age group
with Catriona Kane racing powerfully to the line in 6 minutes 48 seconds
leading further excellent runs from Leona Melville (6.49), Mirren Henry (6.50)
and Olivia Freed (6.53). Leah Brown came through well in 7.46, leading in
Scarlett Roy (7.53), Scarlett Haddow (8.11), Isabel McGuire (8.39), Alice
Cameron (8.59) and Grace Johnstone (9.16). Summer MacLean was the top Under-15
Girl with another good run of 6:52 while Ellen Montgomery stuck well to the
task to record 8.04.
Niamh McKinlay ran well throughout as the top Under-11 Girl,
coming round in 7:19, with Isla Henry (8.03), Dara Clark (8.18) and Emma
Anderson (8.19) all showing good form. Connie Bateman (8.29) should be pleased
with her run leading home further lively efforts from Iona Griffen (8.38),
Willow Hopper (8.41), Jasmine Haddow (8.53) and Arianne McKay (9.18). Alexandra
Montgomery was the only Under-9 Girl competing and should be pleased with her
The final match of the East District Cross Country League was played out at Deans Country Park in Livingston on Saturday 19 January. Central Athletic Club’s runners were faced with frozen paths causing all to think whether spikes, trail shoes or trainers were the correct footwear. Highlights were Morag Millar winning the Senior Women’s race and Scott Brember coming home as first veteran in the Senior Men’s race.
always the day commenced with the Under-11 races with both the girls and boys facing
1.6 kilometre runs. There was a good turnout of Under-11 girls with Leah Gibb
leading home Central’s challenge finishing in an excellent fourth place with a
6 minutes 44 seconds timing. Niamh McKinlay did well to finish in 16th (7.01) and
was followed home by further useful runs from Lauren Stewart (33rd; 7.27), Isla
Henry (48th; 7.51) and Ciara Middleton (51st; 7.53) with the girls finishing as
third team on the day and third across the season. Ray Taylor was the only
Central Under-11 boy to face the challenge and here finished in a superb third
place with another assured performance of 6 minutes 9 seconds.
The Under-13 girls and boys had a full 3.2
kilometre lap of the course to negotiate and here Carys Gibb was the first
Central girl, finishing in a fine eleventh place (13.11). Just a few strides
behind, Catriona Kane finished in twelfth (13.13), and with Mirren Henry in
15th (13.34), the girls finished as third team, again third across the season. Back-up
here was provided by Brogan McMillan (53rd; 16.44) and Izzy McGuire (17.31). There
was also a good turnout of Central’s Under-13 boys with Connor Bell always
challenging at the front of the race and here finishing third in 11 minutes 11 seconds.
Aaron Middleton also proved highly competitive in twelfth (12.05) with Joshua
Kennedy (24th; 12.28) also well in the mix as the team finished third on the
day. There was no doubting the commitment of Sam Gardner (57th; 13.34), Alex
Dunlop (62nd; 13.45), Henry Crossley (75th; 14.16) and Dylan McCulloch (83rd;
14.47), with the boys all finishing well and more will be heard from this group
Heidi Eik-Maxwell was the sole Central
athlete stepping up for the Under-15 and Under-17 Girls 4 kilometre test
finishing her run as 31st Under-15 Girl in exactly 19 minutes. Euan Docherty
had a sound run to finish 28th (15.58) in the Under-15 Boys race backed up by
Enrique Mendez (46th; 18.09) and Ross Lawrie (46th; 19.04). Sam Burton was the only
Central Under-17 Man to tackle the 6.4 kilometre two lap course and although
finding this a real test will have learned much from the experience in
finishing 32nd (27.38).
Morag Millar attacked the Senior Women’s
6.4 kilometre course from the gun and produced an excellent front running
performance to win by over a minute in 22 minutes 35 seconds. Fanni Gyurko fought
hard on the last lap with former Scottish Cross Country Champion Freya Ross and
only lost out on the final run-in by 2 seconds, coming home in 23.44 in third. Amy
Hendry provided a much improved performance in finishing 39th (26.31) and with
veteran runner Hazel Dean finishing 54th (28.58), Central’s team finished
Michael Wright (31.18) proved to be the
pick of the Central runners in the Senior Men’s team coming home eighth over a
9.6 kilometre 3 lap course. Scott Brember was once again the top veteran on the
day, finishing 16th overall in 31.58 while Under-20 runner Telfer Gray came
through in 53rd (34.13). Dale Colley and Lewis Millar crossed the line together
in 70th and 71st places with both recording 35.30. Will Hensman (110th; 37.40) and
veteran runner David Eckersley (112th; 37.42) battled to the line and there were
further solid runs from Donald Shaw (155th; 39.52), Iain Dunsmore (161st;
40.29), Hugh Buchanan (166th; 40.45) and Colin Alexander (186th; 41.37). It was
good to welcome back Roger Greenaway who finished 188th with 41.48 while Allan
Gall (238th; 45.52) again prevailed in his own personal contest with Cameron
Campbell (240th; 46.01).
Scotland teams were in cross country action in Belfast over the weekend coming
home with a clutch of medals. The British Cross Challenge races at Dundonald
doubled up as both the Celtic Cross Country Championships plus the Home
Countries Cross Country. It was a format which seemed to work well, even if it
added somewhat to the workload for those tasked with distributing medals!
The Senior races featured a number of international athletes from outside
Britain as well as strong English opposition. So testament to Central’s
Alastair Hay as he proved to be Scotland’s top performer in the Senior Men’s
race, finishing twelfth overall and covering the 10 kilometre course in a tasty
31 minutes 42 seconds.
In the Under-20 race Central’s Hamish Hickey had another good run to finish tenth,
covering the 5 kilometre course in 19 minutes 45 seconds, and awarded a team
gold for Scotland with his team packing well.
were well represented at the Senior and Under-20 England Indoor combined events
championships in Sheffield earlier this month as brothers Tom and Matt Chandler
were chasing selection for Great Britain against the best all round athletes
from throughout the UK.
was competing in the Senior Men’s Heptathlon 3 years after earning his Great
Britain debut at junior level. The 21 year old from Balfron, now living in
Uxbridge, graduated from University last year and started his first full time
job meaning he has to face the challenges of balancing full time work with the
training demands of decathlon. He is also currently in transition between
training groups so knew it would be a challenge to try and get into the
reckoning for selection for the senior GB team. But he stuck to the task and sprinted
to 7.55 seconds in the 60 metres, followed with a 6.48 metre Long Jump, 11.34 metre
Shot Put and 1.83 metre High Jump to finish the first day with 2,609 points for
21st place. In the second day he ran 8.95 seconds over the 60 metre Hurdles, had
a strong 4.20 metre Pole Vault before finishing with 2:48.09 in the 1,000 metres.
In spite of the extra demands placed on him he had managed to score 4,825
points, within 200 of his personal best, and place 15th overall and a very
respectable 6th in the Under-23 category against the best all round athletes
from throughout the UK.
Tom commented “I’m just getting to grips with working full time and training
and how difficult that is becoming. I was just not competition-sharp, fitness
wise and was just not reacting off the floor and it showed. But I’m looking
forward to summer now with a new coaching set up which should put me in good
stead for outdoors!” Hopefully we can see him back to his best for the summer.
Chandler was contesting the Junior Heptathlon and had the perfect start as he
sprinted to a personal best 7.54 seconds in the 60 metres. He followed this
with 6.53 metres in the Long Jump then another personal best of 10.57 metres in
the Shot Put. He was then looking to make his move in his strongest Pole Vault
event however things didn’t go to plan as he managed only 3.80 metres, well
down on his 4.32 metre club record. This gave him an uphill struggle to get
into contention for the medals and GB selection. But he started well when he
returned for the second day started with 8.88 seconds in the 60 metre hurdles
then he equalled his personal best in the High Jump with an excellent 1.92
metres, the 3rd highest jump of the day to pull him up to 7th place. He then
finished with another personal best 2:50.38 to retain 7th place for an
excellent personal best final score of 4,751 points. Matt was able to take the
positives and negatives from the competition commenting “My immediate reaction was
I was a bit disappointed with the pole vault which ended my chances at the GB
vest but a couple of days later I realised I still managed 4 PBs so very mixed
emotions from the competition.” Matt will next be in action at the Scottish
championships at the Emirates in February.
competing in the Junior Heptathlon was second claim Central athlete Joel
MacFarlane, representing Arbroath on the day, who set a personal best 5,113
points for the bronze medal. This earned Joel his second selection for Great
Britain in the upcoming international after making his debut at the event last
At Stirling’s King’s Park on 12 January, the Scottish Inter
District Cross Country Races preceded the international races on the same fast courses, with athletes chosen to represent their District following their
performances in December’s District Championships. As always this ensured a
number of high quality races with Central Athletic Club athletes featured
With almost perfect conditions for cross country running, Central’s
Alastair Hay, competing for Scotland East, ran a tactically astute race as he
worked through the field to finish third overall. With one of the athletes
ahead of Alastair being a North of England guest, Alastair was awarded a well-deserved
individual silver medal as he completed the 8 kilometre course in 25 minutes 25
seconds. Stirling University student Hamish Hickey had competed in the North of
Scotland Relay Championships earlier in the season so here wore the red vest of
the North of Scotland. Under-20 Hamish led his North team home in 22nd overall
in a time of 26.39. Conan McCaughey also ran strongly to finish 26th (26.52) to
pick up a Scotland East team medal. Dale Colley tested his fitness against this
quality opposition and here finishing in 46th (27.57).
Morag Millar was always to the fore in the 6 kilometre Women’s
Inter District race. Morag came home for a fine third place in 21 minutes 8 seconds,
taking home an individual silver medal and leading her East team to gold medals.
The winning East team also included as a late addition Fanni Gyurko, putting
her marathon running to one side for the day, and moving through the field for
eleventh overall (22.33). Under-20 runners Lauren McCulloch and Rebecca Craig
were both representing the Scottish Students team with both looking competitive
throughout. Lauren finished 37th overall (23.33) and Rebecca in 43rd (23.49), a
great experience for both athletes.
The Under-17 Inter District races also proved to be classy
affairs with both Men and Women tackling 5 kilometre tests. Ben MacMillan tested
himself at the front of the Men’s race staying competitive throughout to come
home in an excellent fifth place with 16 minutes 39 seconds. Carrie Banks also
worked well throughout to finish tenth (20.01), helping her East team to win
Gold district medals. This time around Kyra Gibb was outside the team medal
places but had yet another strong run to finish 18th with a fine 20.48
Cameron Kerr was another to be competitive throughout his Under-15
Boys race, held over 4 kilometres. Here he finished 20th in the Inter District
challenge in a time of 14.27 while Cameron MacMillan, recovering from a cold,
had to settle for 35th this time with 15.57. This was perhaps the most daunting
challenge of Summer MacLean’s athletic career to date and she should be proud
of her performance in finishing 33rd with 17.32.
The Under-13s were faced with a 3 kilometre test and here
Connor Bell was well to the fore throughout the Boys race to finish sixth with
10 minutes 35 seconds. Ruairidh Burns was making his debut at this level and will
have learned much from the experience finishing 36th (12.28). Carys Gibb also
stepped up to the challenge and had a strong run to finish 19th (12.27), just
missing out on a team medal.
The New Year kicked off with a series of 3,000 metre Scottish Indoor Championship races at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow on the evening of Friday 4 January. Central Athletic Club athletes Alastair Hay, Michael Wright and Ben MacMillan used the opportunity to stretch their legs against high quality opposition.
Alastair Hay returned to the tight bends of indoor running for the first time in 5 years and ran an excellent 8 minutes 14.20 seconds in finishing sixth in the Senior Scottish Championships. Current Scottish marathon champion Michael Wright made his first ever competitive outing on the indoor track and came home in 8 minutes 33.11 seconds, a 10 seconds personal best for the distance. Under-20 athlete Ben MacMillan made his debut in this age group and lifted the Scottish Championship bronze medal with a superb performance of 8 minutes 38.16 seconds, an amazing 33 seconds personal best for the distance.
Alastair and Ben will be swapping the blue and yellow vest of Central for the black vest of the East of Scotland at the Inter District cross country races in Stirling on Saturday 12 January. Other Central athletes selected for the East of Scotland teams include Under-13s Melissa Turnbull, Carys Gibb, Connor Bell and Ruairidh Burns; Under-15s Summer MacLean, Cameron MacMillan and Cameron Kerr; Under-17s Carrie Banks, Rosie Eckersley and Kyra Gibb; Senior Woman Morag Millar; Senior Men Dale Colley, Conan McCaughey and Scott McDonald. Under-20 runners will compete in the Senior Inter District races and Hamish Hickey has been selected for the North of Scotland team while Under-20 Stirling students Rebecca Craig and Lauren McCulloch will be competing for the Scottish Students team
The second race in the Central Athletic Club’s 2018-19 Cross-Country Series was held in unseasonably bright sunshine, on Saturday 22 December in the Laigh Hills Park, Dunblane. A testing course of some 1.8 kilometres saw a field of 53 runners completing the challenge.
Connor Bell continues to impress and here controlled the race to finish as overall winner in 6 minutes 40 seconds and lead home more fine runs in his Under-13 age group from Joshua Kennedy (7:19), Owen Eckersley (7:44), Cameron Darnborough (8:19) and Ethan Duncan (8:23). It was also good to see Cian McDonnell (8:37), Josh Whitby (9:14), Freddie Mills (9:59) and Scott Hill (10:19) all equal to the test.
Under-15 runner Ryan McGuire looked in good form as he led home his age group with a 6:45 clocking with further fine efforts from Euan Docherty (7:02), Ross Lawrie (7:58), Jamie Goddard (8:11) and Lloyd Raymond (8:17). Oliver Holden was the only Under-17 Boy on show and here he finished with a creditable 7:17 effort.
The Under-11 Boys again proved to be the largest group and here it was Ray Taylor who led his peers home in an impressive 7:34 ahead of other classy performances from Euan Haythorne (8:03), Rory Gunn (8:04), Lewis Cook (8:29), Fergus Young (8:33), Jamie Connor (8:42), Callum Harvey (8:44), Logan Bell (8:45), Joel Gillan (8:48) and Noah Kennedy (8:51). JJ McIntyre (9:03) led home a string of further fine efforts from Scott MacMillan (9:07), Magnus Carrie (9:13), Sandy Bateman (9:14), Conall Paterson (9:25), Cameron Pollock (9:34) and Matthew Inman (10:53). AJ MacMillan was the sole Under-9 Boy to pick-up the challenge finishing in a highly respectable 9 minutes 12 seconds.
Summer MacLean was the top female competitor producing a tasty 7 minutes 46 seconds in the Under-15 Girls category with Amy Cully (7:59) in hot pursuit. Heather Riach (8:35) and Ellen Montgomery (9:14) also finished with commendable performances. Leona Melville proved the strongest of the Under-13 Gils with a fine effort of exactly eight minutes leading in Leah Brown (8:38), Brogan MacMillan (8:47), Caitlin Bradwell (8:53), Scarlett Roy (9:10) and Isabel McGuire (10:00).
The Under-11 Girls proved to be a competitive age group with Niamh McKinlay prevailing in 8:02 from Leya Gibb’s 8:09 effort. Emma Anderson (9:10) was again to the fore leading in more fine runs from Fia Watkin (9:38), Sienna Shepherd (9:42), Connie Bateman (9:45) and Dara Clark (9:50). The Under-9 Girls were led home by Hannah Inman’s strong 10:01 effort while Eilidh Connor (11:10) and Alexandra Montgomery (11:36) should both be more than satisfied with their runs.
Thanks are again due to Derek Easton, Raymond Milne, David Eckersley, Sean Scott and the small army of helpers who provided another excellent event on behalf of Central Athletic Club.
Central Athletic Club’s recent Christmas Handicap attracted some seventeen runners and it was Jennifer Wetton who won emphatically by some 47 seconds from Under-20 runner Telfer Gray. It was another Under-20, Lauren McCulloch, who came through in third closely followed by another strong run from Michael Wright.
Dale Colley had the fastest lap with 12 minutes 31 seconds ahead of Michael Wright’s 12:46 effort. Other notable male performances saw the talented Under-17 runner Ben MacMillan finish with 12:49 ahead of Murray MacLarty (13:15) and speedy Veteran Scott Brember (13:16) proved to be the fastest Veteran with 13:11 while Under-20 runners Sandy Holl and Telfer Gray finished with 13:33 and 13:49 respectively.
Morag Millar was again the top female competitor with a 13:49 effort while Jennifer Wetton clocked 14:32 and Under-20 Lauren McCulloch 15:08 with Hazel Dean (18:29) again finishing as the top female Veteran on the night.
Central AC’s runners brought home three individual trophies and team medals in six of the 10 races at the East of Scotland Cross Country Championships at Aberdeen. Top individual honours in the senior races went to Jamie Crowe returning home for the Christmas break after some record breaking running at college in the US and Morag Millar whose run of form continues. These races also formed the main basis for selection to represent the East of Scotland in the inter-district matches in the New Year which see a move from Holyrood Park to Stirling, along with the televised international races.
Jamie Crowe (41) in leading pack
The Senior Men’s race saw Jamie Crowe in the leading pack throughout and as runners, including Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Robbie Simpson, dropped back, it was Jamie who prevailed to win gold with a 27 minutes 19 seconds run over the 8.5 kilometre course. Alastair Hay shrugged off injury worries to finish seventh with 28:17, while an improved effort by Dale Colley (ninth, 28:24) and strong running from Conan McCaughey (11th, 28:31) laid the foundation for team victory.
Scott Brember, Michael Wright and Murray MacLarty pack for team points
There were more top performances from Murray MacLarty (21st, 29:37) and Scott Brember (22nd, 29:40) ensuring Central continued their five year team winning streak in this event while Michael Wright (23rd, 29:45) provided the vital back-up with yet another quality run. Further good runs came from David Lindsay (85th, 34:07), David Eckersley (93rd, 34:47), Iain Dunsmore (117th, 36:23), Cameron Campbell (178th, 43:25) and John Millar (190th, 49:03) while Scott Brember’s effort picked up the individual Master’s gold medal.
Morag Millar dominated the women’s race
Morag Millar put in a dominant performance in the Women’s race over the same distance as the men, with her 30:57 timing almost 2 minutes in front of her next opponent. The team finished in fourth place with fine runs by ever-improving Amy Hendry (27th, 37:40) and Master’s runners Julia McAfee (36th, 40:08) and Hazel Dean (40th, 40:47).
The Under-20 Men race over 6.5 kilometres saw Central’s new recruit Hamish Hickey bring home an individual bronze medal with a 21 minute 21 seconds timing and with more good runs from Central athletes Sandy Holl (10th, 22:09), Tom Graham-Marr (13th, 22:11) and Telfer Gray (23rd, 23:40) the team silver medals were assured. In the Under-20 Women’s race, Central’s sole runner Lauren McCullough put in a spirited run, being in a medal place for the bulk of the race, before the pace told and she finished with a fine fifth place in 25:19.
Ben Macmillan (139) in U17 action
The Under-17 Men’s race saw Ben MacMillan in fine form to take an individual silver medal with an 18 minute 11 seconds run over a 5.5 kilometre course. Daniel Bruce swapped his jumping spikes to prove his endurance credentials finishing 29th with 21:08. The three Central Under-17 Women on the same course were rewarded for some fine running with bronze team medals through Carrie Banks (9th, 22:19), Rosie Eckersley (13th, 23:01) and Kyra Gibb (15th, 23:22).
Central’s U17W team at work
The Under-15 Boys tackled a 4 kilometre course with Cameron MacMillan leading Central’s effort in eighth with 14:18. Cameron Kerr also had a fine run in 10th with 14:24 and with Euan Docherty finishing 24th (15:32) the Boys were rewarded with bronze team medals
Medal chase in U13B
The Under-13 Boys faced a 3.2 kilometre challenge and here a fine assured run from Connor Bell saw him take the individual gold medal with a winning performance of 10:21. Ruairidh Burns continues to impress and here finished ninth with 11:01 and with Aaron Middleton also proving his credentials in 16th with 12:25, Central won yet another set of bronze medals.
The final set of bronze team medals went to the Under-13 Girls’ team with fine runs from Melissa Turnbull (8th, 11:54), Carys Gibb (11th, 12:06), Mirren Henry (19th, 12:33) and Brogan McMillan (36th, 13:30).
Central AC men won the Lindsays National Cross Country Relays at Cumbernauld and have claimed top spot in the Scottish Athletics Cross Country Team Challenge 2018.
Jemma Reekie and Central’s Morag Millar (right) went 1-2 at the Lindsays Short Course Cross Country in Lanark to land Cross Country GP points (photo by Bobby Gavin)
The series was across three of the shorter events in the cross country season and a team competition at senior level with points totted up from district relay championships as well as the national championships at Cumbernauld and the short course (4,000 metres) cross country championships in Lanark.
Central AC took the top place in the men’s table with 47 points from Shettleston Harriers on 44 and Inverclyde AC on 41.
On the women’s side, Edinburgh University Hare and Hounds took maximum points with 50 to win from Kilbarchan AAC on 47 and third placed Victoria Park Glasgow on 45. Edinburgh AC (42) and Central AC (40) completed the top five.
There’s £4,000 up for grabs in the Scottish Athletics Cross Country Grand Prix over six events this winter. Two have been completed following Lanark and the recent British Cross Challenge event at Liverpool and the third event is fast approaching at the Lindsays District Cross Country Championships.
Morag Millar of Central AC and Steph Pennycook of Fife AC and Edinburgh University Hare and Hounds share the lead in the women’s points table at the moment, both on 79.
The second match of the East District Cross Country League was held on the normal testing course at Broxburn on Saturday 24 November. With a mixture of sunshine and heavy showers the races were made more challenging for those facing the full force of the rain. The constricted start and slippery conditions in places resulted in a few falls for Central’s runners with most able to pick themselves up and continue.
Packing well together
The Under-11 races saw both the girls and boys facing a 1.4 kilometre course. There was a good turn-out of Central Athletic Club’s Under-11 Boys with spirited performances from the club’s youngsters. Ray Taylor had an excellent fifth place run with a time of 5 minutes 27 seconds. Ossian Arkotxa also did well in 10th (5:33) with back-up from Jack Sutton (20th, 5:44), Jamie Connor (40th, 6:14) and Logan Bell (64th, 6:49) the results ensured the boys finished in fourth place on the day and are in fourth overall in the league.
For the Under-11 Girls, it was a third team place, with more good turnout and performances. Leah Gibb had a great run with 7th place in 5:51, with Niamh McKinlay (14th, 6:02), Isla Henry (28th, 6:26), Tabitha McKenzie (33rd, 6:39), Ciara Middleton (45th, 7:00) and Connie Bateman (48th, 7:07).
The Under-13 Girls and Boys had their endurance tested over a one lap 2.7 kilometre course featuring the dreaded Lungbuster Hill. In the Boys race Connor Bell ran well throughout to finish fourth with 10:05. There were further strong efforts from Aaron Middleton (21st; 11:00), Ruairidh Burns (29th, 11:13), Owen Eckersley (47th, 11:41) and Alex Dunlop (60th, 12:04). The Boys finished in sixth place and are currently in fifth in the league.
For the Under-13 Girls, Carys Gibb, followed her younger sister’s example by being first Central athlete home in 14th place in 11:52. Mirren Henry (16th, 11:54), Catriona Kane (17th, 11:54) and Leona Melville (18th, 11:58) came in strongly together with Mary Kealey (38th, 12:55) and Brogan McMillan (53rd, 14:24) completing a strong turnout and third place on the day, confirming third place overall in the league.
Sandy Holl among the counters
There was more excellent running in the Under-15 Boys race over a 4.1 kilometre course with Finlay Muir showing improved form to finish eleventh (15:44) and with good back-up from Ryan McGuire (14th, 16:03) and Euan Docherty (45th, 18:13) ensuring the team finished sixth on the day and are currently fourth in the league.
The combined Under-15 and Under-17 Girls also held their league position with fourth place over the challenging 4.1 kilometres through another strong team of Rosie Eckersley (Under-17) (11th, 17:07), Grace Tindall (17th, 17:42), Summer Maclean (28th, 18:39) and Heidi Eik-Maxwell (43rd, 19:52).
Scott Brember (18) – winning Masters Men
The Senior Men tackled a 3 lap course of 8.1 kilometres. Scott McDonald used his experience to work through the field and finish fifth with 29 minutes 14 seconds. Scott Brember proved to be the fastest Masters runner on show, finishing 16th overall with 29:49. Under-20 runners Sandy Holl and Telfer Gray did the club proud with 32nd and 43rd places respectively with 30:48 and 31:16. David Eckersley (122nd, 35:46) and Donald Shaw (128th, 36:05) completed Central’s counters while Iain Dunsmore (140th, 36:46), Colin Alexander (150th, 37:28), Ben Noad (165th, 37:58) and Hugh Buchanan (167th, 38:03) all showed their normal true grit. Alan Gall and Cameron Campbell had their own personal tussle with Allan prevailing by some 10 seconds as they finished 234th and 235th with times of 42:27 and 42:37. The Senior Men’s team finished in ninth place on the day leaving them off the pace in fourth in the league.
The Senior Women had a 5.4 kilometre two lap race, with failure to fill the team places left the squad crashing from lead place after match one to an irrecoverable 10th place after this match. Ever-resilient Claire Houston recovered from a fall to finish in 32nd in 25:11 with new masters recruit Julia McAfee 52nd in 26:46.
A number of Central Athletic Club’s senior athletes travelled to Liverpool at the weekend to compete in the British Athletics Cross Country Challenge with places in the European Cross Country Championships and European Clubs Championships at stake. Morag Millar tussled with a high class British field to finish in a superb 22nd place, covering her 8.1 kilometre course in 27 minutes 30 seconds.
The Senior Men from Central had a less successful day, again competing against the best in Britain over a 9.8 kilometre course with the British Club Championship within the race featuring Central AC competing against Leeds City AC and Swansea Harriers, for club champions from Scotland, England and Wales respectively. Cameron Milne was the best placed of Central’s runners in 60th (30:15) leading in Dale Colley (111th, 31:31), Chris Smithard (132nd, 32:18) and last minute addition Lewis Millar (207th, 34:58), with top honours in the club event going to Leeds.
Photography by www.whylerphotos.com – 01786 474340
Over 150 of Central AC’s athletes along with their families and friends celebrated the success of the club this season at their annual End of Season Celebration at the Stirling Court Hotel on Friday night. The club’s home grown Olympian, Andy Butchart, was on hand to present the awards to the club’s athletes. During the event Andy gave an interview where he inspired the younger athletes in the club as he described how he started at Central AC as a teenager and rose up the ranks all the way to the Olympics. He also told them how leading the race at the Olympics is just like leading any other race, and how he is hoping to win a medal at the upcoming European Indoor Championships in Glasgow next March. The event finished off with a ceilidh as the athletes let their hair down to the music of local band Skelpit Lug. A great evening was had by all. Athletes will now turn their attention to the new season with the cross country season already underway and the indoor track and field season kicking off in December.
Photography by Whyler Photos of Stirling www.whylerphotos.com
The winners of the perpetual trophies for 2018 were as follows:
Joe Allan Trophy for best performance by an Under-13 at the club championships:
Girls – Emily Guest, Boys – Robb Ferguson
Bob Crawford Memorial Trophy for best javelin performance over the season:
Female – Rebecca Cumming, Male – Scott Hopper
Best performance by a senior boy thrower at club championships:
Jimmy Millar Trophy for horizontal jumps:
Female – Louise Carroll, Male – Matt Chandler
Best performance by any athlete at the club championships:
Fraser Shield for most improved athlete:
Female – Elizabeth Thompson, Male – Tom Chandler
Robert Shephard Trophy for outstanding contribution by a female athlete to club performance:
Isobel Robertson Trophy for outstanding contribution to the youth development league:
Boys – Ewan Wilbert, Girls – Coirilidh Cook
Ralph Erskine Trophy for contribution to team performance in cross country:
Female – Lauren McCulloch, Male – Ali Hay
Whitelam Quaich for Endurance – commitment:
Whitelam Quaich for Endurance – excellence:
David Hay Trophy for ultra-distance:
Jimmy Millar King of the Track:
Congratulation to them and to all the award winners on the night.
The first race in the Central Athletic Club’s 2018-19 Cross-Country Series was held on Sunday 18 November, in bright sunshine, on a flat course of some 1.8 kilometres in Cochrane and Johnstone Parks Alva, attracting a field of 50 runners.
Race start at Alva
Connor Bell underlined his superb early season form with a mature performance for an Under-13 coming home first in 6 minutes 33 seconds. There were further classy performances from the Under-13 Boys through Ruairidh Burns (7:03), Jamie Oldham (7:07), Ethan Duncan (7:32), Sam Gardener (7:42), Henry Crossley (7:52) and Andrew Twigg (7:56). This well supported age group also saw strong runs from Jonah Whitby (8:06), Patrick Gallagher (8:09), Dylan McCulloch (8:10), Sam Jones (8:41) and Scott Hill (9:35). Under-17 Oliver Holden finished second overall with an assured performance of 6 minutes 55 seconds leading home Aaron MacDonald’s 7:29 effort in the same age group.
The fourteen Under-11 Boys on show were led home by Ossian Arkotxa with a fine 7 minutes 8 seconds timing ahead of more excellent efforts from Jack Sutton (7:37), Douglas Stewart (7:46), Euan Haythorne and Lewis Henry (both 7:48) and Fergus Young (7:55). Finlay MacGregor (8:07) led home more good efforts from Gavin Young (8:10), Aidan Imrie (8:11), Callum Harvey (8:20), Fergus Gallagher (8:21), Jamie Connor (8:25), Logan Bell (8:34), Cameron Moore (9:24) and Scott Hill (9:35). Ross Lawrie (7:57) proved the strongest of the Under-15 Boys leading in Adam McGregor (9:38). Logan McShane was the sole Under-9 Boy to take the challenge finishing in a tasty 9 minutes 41 seconds.
Amongst the girls it was Under-13 Carys Gibb who caught the eye with an excellent run and a fine 7 minutes 18 seconds clocking ahead of further solid runs from Mirren Henry (7:26), Catriona Kane (7:32) and Brogan McMillan (7:57). As the Under-13 Girls poured through, Zosia Paddon (8:27) led the chase followed by Megan Hogg (8:45), Niamh Imrie (9:01), Robyn Youens (9:06) and Isabel McGuire (9:48). Amy Cully proved to be the best of the Under-15 Girls with a fine 7 minutes 32 seconds effort followed home by Ellen Montgomery (8:36) and Megan Dunlop (9:27).
Leya Gibb should be pleased with her 7 minutes 45 seconds run as she led home a string of Under-11 Girls including Isla Henry (8:37), Emma Anderson (8:38), Fia Watkin (8:47) and Dara Clark (9:31). Under-9 Lauren McDonald (8:45) never looked out of place here and Alexandra Montgomery (9:47) was another who should be pleased with her effort.
Thanks are due to Derek Easton, Raymond Milne the small army of helpers who provided another excellent event. The results are available to download as a spreadsheet here.
Central runners Scott Brember and David Eckersley travelled to Swansea to represent Scotland in the British and Irish Masters Cross Country International on Saturday 17 November. Scott was well to the fore in the M45 age group finishing in silver medal position while David produced a solid performance in the M55 age group finishing 13th and third Scot.
Morag Millar of Central AC gave it her all in the Scottish Short Course Cross Country Championships but had to settle for silver medal in a hard fought contest over the flat and fast Lanark racecourse circuit. There were medals for Ben MacMillan in the Under-17 race and Scott Brember took the top Masters’ medal but otherwise it was a thinner day for the Central trophy cabinet.
Morag Millar (837) leads from Gemma Reekie
In the Senior Women’s race, Morag pushed the pace for the majority of the 4,000 metre race, whittling the lead group down to four contenders, and then just two over the last kilometre. Unfortunately, that second runner was Jemma Reekie, who sat in behind Morag for the bulk of the race and then had a kick left for the last 100 metres that Morag could not match. Morag took silver medal with 13 minutes 9 seconds. She led in a squad of young Central runners: Rebecca Craig (30th; 14:42), Lauren McCulloch (45th; 15:02), Natalie Stewart (56th; 15:29) and Cliona Ferguson (115th; 17:12).
Ali Hay (4) amid the leading group
The Senior Men’s 4 kilometre race saw Alastair Hay lead home Central’s effort in seventh place recording 11 minutes 48 seconds and with Scott Green in a close up tenth (11:51), Dale Colley (27th; 12:16) and Matthew Sutherland (38th; 12:26), Central had to settle for fourth team spot on the day. Scott MacDonald (39th; 12:28) made an all too infrequent appearance while Murray MacLarty (51st; 12:38) and Scott Brember (52nd; 12:39) ensured the yellow and blue vests were to the fore. Scott took the championship medal for top Over-40 runner. With some 470 race finishers there were further good runs from Donald Shaw (265th; 15:01), Iain Dunsmore (317th; 15:31), David Eckersley (327th; 15:43), Charles Graham-Marr (328th; also 15:43), Ben Noad (348th; 16:02) and Colin Alexander (16:26).
Ben MacMillan has had a great start to the cross country season and here picked up an individual Bronze medal, covering the 3 kilometre course in 9 minutes 47 seconds, only six seconds adrift of the winner, Kane Elliott of Falkirk Victoria Harriers who is the current Under-18 1,500 metres European Champion. Ben led home Central team mates Lewis Dow (31st; 10:40), Daniel Bruce (64th; 11:24) and Kyle Howie (65th; 11:25) with the team in seventh overall.
Central AC’s yellow vests well up at the men’s start
Central’s Under-15 Girls faced a fast and furious 2,000 metre course through Summer MacLean (54th; 7:44), Naomi Howlieson (62nd; 7:52), Anna Buchanan (76th; 8:13) and Anna Reid (85th; 8:23). Elizabeth Thompson was sole Under-17 woman for Central running the 3,000 metres strongly to record 33rd place in 13:06.
The Under-15 Boys were faced by the same 2 kilometre challenge and it was Cameron MacMillan who led home Central’s challenge in 21st with a time of 6 minutes 27 seconds. Cameron Kerr showed improvement in 29th with 6:31 leading in Euan Docherty (66th; 7:00), Euan Campbell (74th; 7:13), Jack Campbell (92nd; 7:33) and Ross Lawrie (94th; 7:34) and the team finishing in eighth.
Central AC’s Men’s team continued with winning ways at the National Cross Country Relay Championships as they climbed back onto the top step of the podium for the sixth time in seven years on one of the top days of the Scottish athletics calendar. Following up on a district relay win two weeks previously, Central were amongst the favourites over the tough course at Cumbernauld, but an even more dominant performance here sets the scene for another strong season by the senior men. It was pleasing to see this win backed up by the junior team taking silver medals as the production line looks in good hands.
Matt Sutherland (724)
The Club’s Senior Men with a superb effort over their four legs of 4,000 metres. Matthew Sutherland had been promoted to Central’s first team following his storming run two weeks previously. Matthew didn’t disappoint with his first leg run of 12 minutes 10 seconds to see his team in a close-up eighth position. Cameron Milne had made the trip from his work base in the Netherlands to support the team and produced an excellent effort of 11:51 to pull the team through to first place. Scott Green underlined his previous week’s form with a mature run (11:45) to extend Central’s lead and with Scottish 5,000 metre Champion Alastair Hay (11:38) on the final leg further extending the lead, it was very much ‘job done’ for Central. Kilbarchan AAC were some 46 seconds down in second with Glasgow University Hare and Hounds in third, a further 14 seconds behind.
Junior Male – silver medallists
It had been some eleven years since a Central AC Junior Boys team had mounted the podium at this event so there was some pressure on Under-13 Connor Bell followed by Under-15 Cameron MacMillan and Under-17 Ben MacMillan as they each tackled 2,500 metre legs. Connor again caught the eye with a 9:02 leg to put Central’s A team into close contention for medals. The MacMillan brothers have been running well in the early part of the Season and Cameron backed this up with an 8:42 clocking to keep the team in contention. Ben set off with great intent and he produced a fine 7:59 lap to bring the team home to lift the Silver medals some 17 seconds behind Giffnock North and crucially 12 seconds ahead of Garscube Harriers.
It was a close run thing, but there no prizes for the Central Women’s A team who finished fourth behind Edinburgh University, Victoria Park and Giffnock North teams in the packed senior race. Jennifer Wetton provided a spirited starting leg, with a 14:27 opener over the same course as the men, bringing the team to changeover in 11th place. Lauren McCulloch kept the pace moving and lifted the team to 7th place with her 15:06 leg and passed on to fellow student Rebecca Craig whose gutsy run had the team pegged in 7th place with her 15:11 leg. Morag Millar had the previous year brought off a remarkable chase through the front of the field to bring the team to silver. But this year, the gaps at the front were too large. Despite posting by far the fastest time of the day from some 232 finishers with her 13:01, the team finished in fourth place.
A Central Women’s B team also put in a strong performance, with 17 year old Abby Rowley posting a 15:35 first lap and the team in 24th place at changeover. Catriona Buchanan put in a storming lap to pull the team up to 13th with her 14:29 second leg to pass on to Kim Timmins who ran a 15:43 lap to move the team up to 11th, Becky Hay drafted in at late notice bringing the team home in a creditable 17th place with her 17:33 leg. For the C team it was just three legs, with Kirsten McStay (17:17), Heather Scott (17:57) and junior team manager Mary Kerr in 21:39.
Junior Female start
The Central Junior Female teams were a further credit to the club with the top three teams finishing tightly packed in the front half of the race. On the first leg for Under-13 runners, Melissa Turnbull was first home in a great 10th place with her 10:24 leg. Summer McLean took over on the Under-15 leg with gritty 10:42 timing and Rosie Eckersley brought the team home with 10:03 for 24th place. Central’s next team in were Carys Gibb (10:34), Naomi Howlieson (10:58), and Carrie Banks (10:00) with 27th place and a third team were Catriona Kane (10:51), Mirren Henry (Under-13) on second leg with 10:58, and Kyra Gibb (10:12) in 34th place. A Central D team of Brogan McMillan (11:27), Mary Kealey (11:11) and Elizabeth Thompson (11:02) were 54th placed team and an incomplete team made up of Allie Buchanan (11:58) and Megan Dunlop (13:10) also showed great strength in depth for the club.
Junior Male start
With all the Central Junior Male team also giving their all as always, the B team of Joshua Kennedy (9:59), Finlay Muir (9:22) and Lewis Dow (8:43) should be pleased with a fine 23rd place. Tom Campbell (10:30), Cameron Kerr (9:03) and Daniel Bruce (9:42) also showed great commitment in the C team to finish 48th. Owen Eckersley led off the D team challenge with 10:47 backed up by two Under-15s Jack Campbell (10:42) and Euan Docherty (10:13) for 82nd overall. The E team of Ruaridh Burns (10:07), Ross Lawrie (11:14) and Cameron Fraser (10:38) also did well in finishing 85th. The large turnout of Central’s Junior Males was completed by two incomplete teams of Dylan McCulloch (12:04) and Ethan Thomson (10:07) and then two Under-13s Alex Dunlop (11:19) and Angus Kennedy (13:21).
It was good to see Central’s Senior Men’s B team finishing in a highly respectable seventh overall through Murray MacLarty (12:28), Lewis Millar (12:21), Conan McCaughey (12:14) and Michael Wright (12:22). Central’s C team were also highly competitive in finishing 17th overall through Jack Kerr (12:33), Tom Graham-Marr (13:15), Dale Colley (12:21) and Sandy Holl (12:46).
There was further tenacity from a Central’s Masters’ team of Iain Dunsmore (15:39), Scott Brember (12:57), Donald Shaw (14:56) and Colin Alexander (15:55) finishing 73rd team overall, while Central’s D team of Telfer Gray (13:17), David Lindsay (14:11), Ben Noad (16:18) and Jens Subke (17:53) came home in 84th.
Special mention should be made of the Over-50 teams of David Eckersley (14:40), Hugh Kerr (15:45) and Hugh Buchanan (16:12) who finished 11th in the class, as well as Cameron Campbell (18:16), Allan Gall (18:32) and John Millar (21:02), 24th in class, who showed the younger athletes a great overall attitude as did a solo run of 17:19 by Raymond Milne.
Central Athletic Club were again hosts for the first match of the East of Scotland Cross Country League on the University campus. Benign weather and dry underfoot conditions favoured the runners and there were some exceptional performances from Central Athletic Club’s runners, with Alastair Hay and Morag Millar winning the two senior races. Central finished the match in overall top place in the female half of the competition covering age groups from Under-11 to Senior.
Senior Men: Alastair Hay in leading group
The Senior and Junior Men tackled a 9 kilometre course and it was soon evident that the fast going suited Central’s Alastair Hay as he sped to victory in a time of 28 minutes 25 seconds. It was good to see Scott Green back competing locally and also delivering a fine second place run with 28:46. With excellent back-up from Michael Wright (10th; 29:44), Scott Brember 15th and first Veteran in 30:31, Under-20 runner Telfer Gray (26th; 32:01) and Dale Colley (46th; 33:23), the Senior Men finished close-up third on the day. Andrew Orr should be pleased with his 66th placing in 34:31 as should Chris McHardy (79th; 35:18). There were further fine efforts from Donald Shaw (98th; 36:30), Iain Dunsmore (136th; 38:50), Ben Noad (140th; 39:00), Hugh Buchanan (167th; 40:57) and a close tussle between Allan Gall and Cameron Campbell finishing in 203rd and 204th spots with Allan recording 44:47 and Cameron 44:54.
Morag Millar leads Women’s race
The Senior and Junior Women’s race was over two laps of the 3 kilometre course and Central took top honours for both individual and team. Morag Millar followed up her fastest lap at last week’s relays with a comfortable win in 21:43. A strong team effort then followed through Rebecca Craig in 12th (23:34), Lauren McCulloch in 15th (24:11), Abby Rowley making her senior debut with 19th place (24:34), Claire Houston (23rd; 25:13), Amy Hendry (31st; 25:55), Becky Hay (52nd; 27:15), Kirsten McStay (53rd; 27:19), Eleanor Hanson (63rd; 28:18) and coach Rhona Scott (101st; 32:29) showing a fine example. The Women, who won the league last year, started this new season by topping the league after this first match. Their points total set the pattern for the day and Central topped the rankings for the Overall Female trophy.
The Under-11 races featured one lap of 1,650 metres with the Under-11 Boys led home by Ray Taylor with a fine fifth place in 6:08 and back-up from Lewis Henry (27th; 6:50) and Rory Mackay (54th; 7:31). For the Girls, Leah Gibb (8th; 6:45), Niamh McKinlay (17th: 6:58) and Isla Henry (37th; 7:41) did a great job of filling the essential three counting places with some good running.
A great turnout of Under-13 runners took on a single lap of 2,400 metres. In the Under-13 Boys race Aaron Middleton led home the Central team in 17th with 10:50 followed closely by Joshua Kennedy (18th; 10:52) and Tom Campbell (32nd; 11:14). There were more encouraging performances from Owen Eckersley (40th; 11:37), Ruairidh Burns (52nd; 11:56), Henry Crossley (56th; 12:12), Sam Gardner (57th; 12:13), Harris Whyte (68th; 12:33) and Angus Kennedy (85th; 15:10). For the Under-13 Girls, Melissa Turnbull (5th; 11:06) was impressive leading the way for the team, with strong support from Carys Gibb (14th; 11:42), Catriona Kane (15th; 11:42), Mary Kealey (30th; 12:25), Brogan McMillan (32nd; 12:29) and Zoisia Paddon (45th; 13:31).
Ben MacMillan in Under-17 Men’s race
Central’s Under-15 Boys made an impact in their 3.3 kilometre challenge with Cameron MacMillan again showing great form to finish second with an inspiring 11:05 clocking, backed-up by an excellent 11th place by Cameron Kerr (11:35) and Euan Docherty (32nd; 12:53). Euan Campbell came home 43rd in 13:30 followed in by Ross Lawrie (55th; 16:09) and Adam McGregor (57th; 19:06) with the Under-15 Boys finishing second overall.
Ben MacMillan was always to the fore in the Under-17 Men’s race, over 6 kilometres and racing to a close-up second overall with 20 minutes 20 seconds. Cameron Fraser stuck in well to come home in 34th place and a time of 27:27.
The combined Under-15 Girls and Under-17 Women’s race had the same course as Under-15 Boys with another strong set of results for the home squad. Rosie Eckersley (Under-17; 8th; 12:30) was first home for Central with Kyra Gibb (Under-17; 15th; 12:52), Grace Tindall (Under-15; 22nd; 13:11), Summer Maclean (Under-15; 34th; 14:07), Naomi Howlieson (Under-15; 47th; 15:02), Heidi Eik-Maxwell (55th; 15:35) and Anna MacKinnon (62nd; 17:08). This team were fourth against strong opposition but played a key role in the overall female league position.
Central AC’s cross country teams started the season in medal winning form, with Senior Men taking top spot and Senior Women bronze medals in the East District Cross Country Championships at a rain drenched course at Glamis Castle.
Matt Sutherland (10) and Murray MacLarty (9)
The Senior Men’s team was back on top of the podium with fine runs from Murray MacLarty, Lewis Millar, Michael Wright and Alastair Hay, over the same 4 kilometre loop used for both Men and Women. The first leg saw Murray bring the team through in fourth with a fine effort of 13 minutes 17 seconds. Lewis picked up the challenge and soon pulled the Central team into the lead with a speedy 13:12 leg and with storming efforts from Michael (13:08) and Alastair (12:50) the lead was never relinquished. Central’s win made it a superb set of twelve victories in this event in the last thirteen years. The winning time of 52:27 was followed in by a 53:02 effort by Edinburgh University Hare and Hounds and Hunter’s Bog Trotters recording 53:10 in third. Alastair Hay’s unchallenged run proved to be the fourth fastest of the day.
Women’s bronze medallists
For the Senior Women’s team, a set of bronze medals were just reward for a fine set of runs. Kate Gallagher set off hard on the competitive first leg and was in 12th place at changeover in 16:21, handing on to Lauren McCulloch whose speedy 15:45 brought the team up to 8th place. It was left to Morag Millar to step in with much the fastest leg of the day to bring the team up through field to bronze medal position with a fine time of 14:02.
Central Men’s ‘B’ team came home in an excellent sixth place overall with Matthew Sutherland’s first leg of 12:55 leading the race after the first leg and recording the fifth fastest leg of the day. Under-20 runner Telfer Gray completed the second leg in 14:29 with the team in eighth overall and with Sandy Holl, another Under-20, picking up the challenge with a 13:51 leg the team moved up to sixth. Jack Kerr’s effort of 13:27 on the final leg ensured the team stayed in sixth with an overall time of 54:42. Central’s Masters’ team of David Eckersley (15:18), Donald Shaw (15:50), Charles Graham-Marr (16:47) and Scott Brember (13:38) proved to be the sixth fastest Masters’ team on the day, finishing 28th overall with Scott recording the fastest time for an Over-40 runner.
Under-20 Tom Graham-Marr led off Central’s ‘C’ team’s effort recording an excellent 13:53, and with David Lindsay (15:41), Ben Noad (17:51) and Kenneth Hislop (21:33) the team finished 46th overall. A further Masters’ team of Hugh Buchanan (17:04), Iain Dunsmore (16:31), Colin Alexander (17:20) and Allan Gall (19:56) finished 49th overall and 13th fastest of the Masters’ teams. An incomplete team of Cameron Campbell (19:10) and John Millar (21:55) rounded off the men’s efforts on the day.
Two further Central Women’s teams also featured with a fine 13th place for the ‘B’ team led off by Claire Houston with a first leg run in 16:58. The team was completed by two members in their first race for the club, Julia McAfee in 18:19 and Rebecca Craig bringing the team home with a fine 15:39 leg. Central ‘C‘ Women’s team finished in 22nd place through good runs by Becky Hay (18:37), Amy Hendry (17:38) and Heather Scott (18:49).
Boys’ race start
There was an encouraging turnout of Central’s young athletes determined to make the most of the first cross country outing of the season over a 2.5 kilometre loop. Central’s ‘A’ Boys’ team comprised Under-13 Joshua Kennedy (10:05), Under-15 Finlay Muir (9:44) and Under-17 Ben MacMillan (8:46) with the team finishing in a fine fourth place with Ben recording the second fastest lap of the day. The ‘B’ team of Owen Eckersley (10:37), Cameron MacMillan (9:18) and Kyle Howie (9:54) finished in a creditable 12th overall with Cameron recording the fifth fastest Under-15 time on the day. Central’s ‘C’ team of Tom Campbell (10:42), Jack Campbell (10:59) and Sam Burton (9:36) proved gritty competitors with a 24th overall placing while the ‘D’ team of Henry Crossley (11:43), Euan Campbell (10:20) and Oliver Holden (10:49) should be proud of their efforts and their 31st placing overall. Central’s ‘E’ team saw Angus Kennedy (13:52), Ross Lawrie (12:00) and Daniel Bruce (10:15) in 39th placing overall, again all the boys showing the right resolve to stand them in good stead for the forthcoming season.
Girls’ race start
In the Girls’ races, a good set of team results underlined the strong showing from across the club. The first Central team home was in a great 8th place, with Under-13 Mirren Henry (11.00), Under-15 Naomi Howlieson (11:40) and Carrie Banks (10:21). Closely following came the next Central trio in 12th place with Brogan McMillan (11:41), Anna MacKinnon (11:13) and Rosie Eckersley (10:32). In 19th place was the team led off by Mary Kealey (11:43), with Allie Buchanan, an Under-13 running in the Under-15 leg in 11:50, and Kyra Gibb completing with 10:37.
Once again there were fine performances by Central Athletic Club runners in the Great Scottish Half Marathon held on Sunday 30 September in Glasgow with the race doubling up as the Scottish Athletics Half Marathon Championships. While the consistent Michael Wright was the first Central Athletic Club athlete home, clocking an impressive 70 minutes 34 seconds in 12th, it was Scott Brember who made his own headlines in 20th overall with 71:41 as he won the Masters (Over 40) Scottish title. Lewis Millar also continues to impress and here finished in 28th with a fine 72:26 timing.
English Six Stage Road Relays
The Invitational English 6 Stage Road Relay Championships was held on the traditional Sutton Park course in Birmingham on Saturday 6 October. Central Athletic Club’s team was almost all change from 2017 with Michael Wright, Scott Brember and Lewis Millar back in racing action after their Glasgow Half Marathon exploits. Matthew Sutherland shouldered first stage responsibility, covering the 6 kilometre course in 19 minutes exactly bringing the Central team through in 56th place.
Scott Brember recorded 19:23 on the second leg with the team now in 52nd place of the 76 contenders. Scott Green picked up the third leg challenge and showed his recent training was paying off with an 18:17 clocking pulling the Central team up to 44th placing. Lewis Millar made more inroads to the opposition with his 18:50 leg bringing Central through to 38th overall. The penultimate leg saw Conan McCaughey make further progress with his 18:24 effort and Central now in 30th overall.
Michael Wright was left to complete Central’s effort coming home in 19:03 bringing the Central team home in 29th place and a club time of 1 hour 52 minutes 57 seconds.
Overall, there was a first ever win for Stockport Harriers (1:45:07) who came through from tenth on the first leg and their top athlete, Ross Millington, proving to be the fastest runner on the day with an excellent 16:54 effort.
England Athletics Under-15 Championships – Bedford, 26 August 2018
Coirilidh Cook cemented her position as one of the UK’s top young hurdlers after she took a superb silver medal at the England Athletics Under-15 Championships at Bedford.
75 Metre Hurdles
The 14-year-old from Balfron has been unbeaten in Scotland all season having won every possible Scottish title, as well as the Celtic Games international, but this time was testing herself against the top hurdlers in the UK.
She went into the Girls 75 Metre Hurdles event ranked 10th in the UK, meaning that getting to the final would be a challenge. In her heat, Cook found herself in a close battle for the two automatic qualification spots. She finished a close third, and her time of 11.77 seconds allowed her to progress as one of the two fastest losers over the three heats.
By the time of the final the rain was falling heavily and there was a headwind ruling out fast times. English schools champion Mia McIntosh built a clear lead, while behind her there was a close battle for the other medals with Cook in the thick of it in fourth place at the midpoint of the race. She dug in over the last few hurdles making light of the wet conditions and a great run off the last hurdle and a perfectly timed dip saw her take a superb silver medal in a time of 11.50 seconds. With this result, Cook beat several athletes ranked ahead of her – a great experience for her.
UK School Games, Loughborough, 31 August – 1 September 2018
There was a medal double for both Central AC athletes at the UK School Games in Loughborough as Elizabeth Thompson and Emma Mailer returned with 2 medals each.
Mailer was first in the 300 Metre Hurdles event. The 16-year-old Dollar Academy pupil has been a regular competitor in international events and this time found herself up against European youth finalist, Jasmine Jolly, representing North of England. It was a fast race and Mailer entered the home straight in fourth place. She overtook the Midlands athlete and narrowly failed to catch the South of England athlete. This gave Mailer third place and an excellent bronze medal in 45.50 seconds.
Thompson was in action in the Mixed Relay event. The 16-year-old Balfron High pupil has been a regular in Scotland relay teams this year and this time was given the anchor leg over 100m. She was handed the baton in the lead and made sure of victory as she stretched away from the opposition down the home straight.
The following day Thompson and Mailer teamed up to make up half of the Scottish 4×300 Metre Relay team. Thompson got the baton in a good position but found herself up against two Great Britain internationals, producing a strong run of 40.6 seconds to hand over in third place. Mailer was on the final leg and with a powerful run of 40.5 seconds brought the Scottish team home in bronze medal position in 2:43.51. Thompson and Mailer’s split times were the fastest in the team.
With a gold and bronze for Thompson and 2 bronzes for Mailer it was a successful two days and a great experience to travel away as part of a Scottish team to a multi-sport event.
Central Athletic Club’s Men’s Team were in Kilmarnock on Sunday for the final meeting of this season’s Scottish Division One Track and Field series, held mainly in testing wet conditions. A number of Central’s Under-17 athletes made their debut in the league with all showing great form and maturity beyond their years. The opposition again included many of Scotland’s top athletes in opposition clubs and Central finished seventh on the day, slipping to sixth place overall in the league.
Michael Wright (3) in the Steeplechase
The first track event, the 400 Metres Hurdles, saw David Lindsay in ‘A’ string action finishing fourth with 68.37 seconds, tackling some of the worst of the weather. There was a high standard set in the two Division One 800 Metres races with Jack Kerr setting a good pace in the ‘A’ event and again ducking under 2 minutes with a 1 minute 59.16 seconds timing in sixth place. The ‘B’ event saw Under-17 Lewis Dow shouldering responsibility and running a well-judged race to finish fourth with a classy 2:04.52. Sprinting duties were passed to the talented group of Under-17 sprinters with Euan Smith taking fifth ‘A’ place in 11.97 seconds and Jack Haughton equalling his personal best with 11.94 seconds in fifth ‘B’ placing. Distance running stalwart Michael Wright was always well placed in the 3,000 Metre Steeplechase clocking 9 minutes 44.15 seconds in third ‘A’ place while the ever reliable David Lindsay finished in third ‘B’ with 11:18.28. The 1,500 Metres saw yet further improvement from Jack Kerr as he ran a tactically sound race to finish third with 4:02.72. The 200 Metres ‘A’ race saw Under-17 Daniel Ferguson reduce his personal best to 24.16 seconds in seventh place. Michael Wright was soon back on the track to tackle the 10,000 Metres finishing in a fine fourth ‘A’ place, clocking 32:2.16 with a well-paced effort.
Jack Haughton and Euan Smith in the 200 Metres
In the field the throwing duties were covered by Graham Porterfield throwing a best of 11.07 metres in the Shot Put for third ‘A’ points; followed by 34.72 metres in the Hammer and a best of 30.9 metres in the Discus, gaining excellent fourth places in these events. Under-17 athletes Euan Smith and Jack Haughton were experiencing their first taste of Men’s League action in the Long Jump with Euan jumping to a best of 5.56 metres and Jack producing a best of 5.18 metres to pick up more much needed points for the team. Daniel Ferguson tackled the Triple Jump, finishing in fourth ‘A’ and improving his personal best to 11.39 metres.
The Club’s Under-17s made up the 4 x 100 Metre Relay quartet of Rian Harvey, Daniel Ferguson, Jack Haughton and Euan Smith, bringing the baton home in fourth in a useful 46.91 seconds. The Guest 100 Metres races saw personal best runs from Under-17 athletes Aidan Grevemberg (11.82s) and Daniel Ferguson (11.87s) and a debut run of 12.83s from Rian Harvey.
As always there was great back-up from the Club’s Officials through Stuart MacFarlane as Field Judge, John Dickson as Track Judge plus Tom McMenemy on Timekeeping duty.
Matt Chandler was on medal winning form yet again as he took two medals at the Scottish age group championships in Aberdeen at the weekend. The 17-year-old decathlete from Balfron was competing in the Under-20 age group and took on the vertical jumps starting with the high jump event on the Saturday. He looked in good form as he cleared every height up to 1.87 metres to guarantee a medal. He was then facing a new personal best at 1.92m which he soared over at the second attempt to move himself into 2nd place. While he was unable to go higher, he was still pleased with his personal best height and silver medal.
He returned the following day to take on the pole vault event where there was a high class field with every athlete having a personal best of 4.20m or higher. Matt had successively improved the club junior record this year several times taking it to 4.31m. He successfully cleared up to 4.17m then was attempting another club record height of 4.32m. After 2 failures Matt dug in at the third and final attempt to produce a superb clearance to improve his club record yet again. Matt was unable to clear 4.47m and such was the standard of the event he had to settle for 4th place on countback. But with a bronze medal and club record Matt was happy with his weekend.
Anna Cameron was Central AC’s other competitor in the Under-20 age group. Anna, also from Balfron, was looking to add the Scottish national title to the Scottish schools title she won earlier this season however was unable to match the 5.55m she jumped back in June at the Scottish schools and had to settle for 7th with 4.97m.
Scottish Under-13 Championships
U13 Boys – 75m Hurdles
Robb Ferguson was on top form as he took a brace of bronze medals at the Scottish Under-13 championships. He started with the 75 Metre Hurdles where he has been competing well this season and produced a strong run to finish in 3rd place with 13.41 seconds. He then took on the Javelin event where he has also shown great progress this season. An excellent second round throw of 29.09 metres was enough to add another bronze medal for Robb making it a great weekend for him. These were Robb’s first ever medals at a national level event.
Several other of Central’s athletes made the long trip to Aberdeen to test themselves against the best in Scotland and were rewarded with personal bests. Connor Bell took on the 1,500 Metres race and ran an excellent Personal Best of 4:35.68 to finish just outside the medals in 4th place in a fast race.
Hannah Tams has made excellent progress recently and was competing in her first ever championships. She was undaunted by the occasion in the 100 Metres as she qualified through the heats in 14.25 seconds, and semi-finals in 14.17s, to reach the final. There, she went even faster running a Personal Best 14.02s for 7th place. She followed this up in the Long Jump where she jumped 3.80m for 9th place, just missing the cut for 3 more jumps. Overall these were excellent performances for a championship debut.
Brogan McMillan was also on great form in the High Jump as she smashed her personal best by 8cm clearing 1.32m to place 9th and earn herself a bronze standard on the club awards scheme. She then placed 6th in her 1,500 Metres heat with 5 minutes 49.68 seconds.
Jamie Oldham set a Personal Best of 2:29.46 minutes in the 800 Metres for 2nd place in his heat and then ran 31.76 seconds in the 200 Metres. Emily Guest was unfortunate not to progress in the 100 Metres where she ran 14.55s in her heat to miss a semi-final spot by just one place. She also ran a fine 30.72s in the 200 Metres.
Scottish Under-15 Championships
U15 Girls – 75m Hurdles
Central’s Under-15 athletes produced some excellent performances in spite of wet conditions at Aberdeen. Celtic Games champion Coirilidh Cook was never challenged as she ran away with the 75 Metre Hurdles in 11.45 seconds to take the gold medal. This completes the set of Scottish titles for the 14-year-old from Balfron as this season she has won the Scottish national and Scottish schools titles both indoors and out.
Scott Hopper was taking on the Under-15 Javelin having won the Under-13 Scottish title last year and the Under-14 Scottish schools title earlier in the summer. The 13-year-old from Callander looked at one point like he might win after a superb Personal Best opening throw of 41.47 metres. In the end he was just pipped for the title with 2 other athletes beating his mark, the eventual winner out-throwing Scott by a slender margin of 21cms. However Scott was still proud of a bronze medal against older athletes. Earlier he had taken a respectable 5th place in the High Jump with 1.59m.
Euan Wilbert came close to the medals in the 80 Metre Hurdles. A time of 12.83s earned the 13-year-old from Strathyre 4th place; a decent run in wet conditions. He then followed this up with 4.88m for 7th place in the Long Jump.
Molly Cornes from Balfron was also competing well in the jumps events. 1.49m was good enough for 5th in a High Jump event where the top 2 athletes set a championship record. She then set a Personal Best in the Long Jump, leaping to 4.84m for 7th. Matilda Ross was rewarded for making the trip with 7th place for 6.06m in the Shot Put. This was in spite of picking up an injury in the warm up.
Ethan Thomson placed 4th in his 100 Metres with 13.87s and set a Personal Best in the 800 Metres, running 2 minutes 26.76 seconds. Cameron Kerr narrowly missed out on reaching the 1,500 Metres final after a fine run of 4:58.42 in his heat.
Central AC’s Ali Hay was on top form as he took the 5,000 metre title at the Scottish national championships at Grangemouth at the weekend, as Central won 3 medals in total.
The 32 year old from Gargunnock has won several previous Scottish titles on and off the track but this was his first Scottish track title since winning the 1,500 metres in 2010, which qualified him for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi that year, where he reached the final.
Hay has shifted his focus up a distance to 5,000 metres and set a personal best 14:10 minutes earlier this season. He used all his experience in a tactical race run in wet blustery conditions as he sat back initially and let others do the running but always kept a close eye on the leaders. Gradually the lead group was whittled down to 6. With 600 metres to go, James Hood of Aberdeen wound up the pace to reduce the group to just 3. When they hit the back straight on the final lap, Sean Fontana of Glasgow burst clear but Hay then decided it was time to make his move and hit top gear to surge ahead. Hay then had the strength to keep going and was never challenged over the last 200 metres as he crossed the line to take the Scottish title. The tactical nature of the race meant the winning time of 14:37.91 minutes was well below Hay’s personal best but what was more telling was his 57 second final 400 metres which nobody else could follow.
Afterwards Hay commented “I am delighted to win it because before today I only have one Senior Scottish track title to my name – that was a 1,500 metres in 2010 held at Pitreavie when they were doing it as selection for the Commonwealths. Today was a good race. Lachlan Oates took it on a few times but nobody else really wanted to so the group stayed together for quite a while. Sean Fontana kicked with 300 metres to go and I responded – I was just glad he didn’t keep it going and I was able to get a bit of lead. I am 32 now and my wee boy was watching. He’s only two at the moment so he won’t remember it I don’t suppose but I can always tell him about it!
“You watch the events in Berlin and it just makes you want to get out there and run again and compete. Obviously we are not at that level, but I enjoyed watching it and it definitely inspired me for Sunday. I don’t race as much now, I guess you have commitments and priorities as you get older, and my wife is training for the Berlin Marathon, so we sometimes have to take it in turns going out for a run.
“But I will look to do the cross country season again. At Central AC, we’re very keen to try and keep winning team titles but we’ve maybe not quite got the depth we had three or four years ago. We will keep working on that to get some athletes back out there.” Hay should have a few more years at the top level.
Michael Wright (left) in action
Also on the podium was Central’s Stirling and Scottish marathon champion, Michael Wright, who finished off his season in style. The Stirling based training partner of Ali Hay was competing in the 3,000 Metre Steeplechase. It was another tactical race and Michael waited for his opportunity. When the break came Michael Deeson of Shettleston pulled away but Wright settled into second place and kept his rhythm over the barriers all the way to the line to take the silver medal in a seasons best 9:28.20 minutes, only just missing his personal best.
High Jumper, Amy Gullen, was Central’s other medallist. In her final competition as a teenager before celebrating her 20th birthday a few days later, Gullen was looking to finally improve her club record of 1.68m which she set back in 2013. She has been in good form all season having jumped 1.66m earlier this year and winning the East District title and a bronze at the Scottish indoor championships. Gullen had first time clearances at every height up to 1.62m which guaranteed a medal as only 3 athletes were left in the competition. However she was looking for more and needed every bit of her resolve to clear 1.67m at the 3rd and final attempt. The bar was then raised to 1.70m and Gullen had good attempts but was not quite able to get the clearance she was after. However she had still done enough to win the silver medal on countback and finish top Scottish competitor behind an athlete from Herts Phoenix AC.
Afterwards Gullen said “I was pleased with the medal but was disappointed not to clear 1.70m as I know I have it in me. I have been training hard and was trying a new run up. I’ll be having another go at the women’s league later this month and the club championships in September so hopefully I can get the club record before the end of the season.” We will all wish her best of luck with that.
There were several other Central competitors in the senior event. Masters’ athlete, Graham Porterfield is still improving and earlier this season broke the club hammer record which had stood since 1980. He couldn’t quite match that distance at the Scottish championships but still threw an excellent 37.74m for 7th place. He also placed 5th in the shot with 11.03m. Jack Kerr was making a return to competition and smashed his 800 Metre personal best with 1:56.66 to progress to the semi-finals where he missed out on the final by just one place. Fraser Logan took on the 1,500 Metres running 4:24.17 minutes, and 2 of our juniors stepped up to test themselves against the top seniors: Kieran Halliday ran a near personal best of 11.74s in the 100 Metres and 24.46s in the 200 Metres. Telfer Gray took on the 5,000 Metres for the first time ever running a respectable 17:18.
Central AC’s hurdlers were on top form as they landed 3 medals at the Scottish Under-17 championships at Grangemouth at the weekend.
Daniel Ferguson – sprint hurdler
Daniel Ferguson was returning after winning a silver medal for Scotland in the Under-16 100 Metre Hurdles at the Celtic Games international the week before at the same venue. This time Daniel was competing in the older Under-17 age group which meant he not only had the challenge of adjusting to the higher height of hurdles at Under-17 but also had to contend with a strong headwind and a wet track. His concentration was then tested as the athlete in the lane next to him was disqualified for a false start. However they were cleanly away at the second time of asking and Daniel got into his rhythm and held onto 3rd place from start to finish to claim the bronze medal. His time of 14.55s was impressive given the difficult conditions.
Shortly earlier, Katie Sharkey lined up in the Under-17 girls 80 Metre Hurdles. She started well and challenged all the way to the line to take silver in 12.16s.
Emma Mailer was also returning a week after winning a silver medal at the Celtic Games international at 400 Metre Hurdles, this time in the shorter 300 Metre Hurdles where she was defending the title she won last year. Emma set out strongly building up a 5 metre lead however faded towards the end and was unfortunately just pipped on the line by 0.01s to win the silver medal in 45.87s but desperately wanting gold.
There were some further good performances as other Central athletes were close to the medals. In the 1,500 Metres, Lewis Dow stayed in contention up until the final lap, however when European youth champion, Kane Elliot kicked at the bell, Dow was unable to keep up and had to settle for 4th. He can still be pleased with a season’s best 4:12.08 minutes. Shona McLay was just run out of the medals in the 200 Metres running 26.36s for 4th just 0.06s from bronze. Elizabeth Thompson, who had also competed at the Celtic Games a week earlier in the 4 x 400 Metre Relay, took on the shorter 300m and placed 5th in a fast race with 41.88s. Lucy More was testing herself out in the 100 Metres running a respectable 13.54s for 6th in her heat.
Central AC athletes were on great form for Scotland as they helped the Scottish team to a convincing victory over Ireland and Wales in the Celtic Games international. Five Central athletes won a total of 5 medals as Scotland won the annual match against the top young athletes from the Celtic nations. This year it was a home match for Scotland and Central AC’s athletes found themselves competing in familiar surroundings at our local track at Grangemouth stadium.
Under-16 80m Hurdles (photo by Bobby Gavin)
The star Central performer of the day was Coirilidh Cook who was making her international debut in the Under-16 Girls 80 Metre Hurdles. The Balfron athlete is more used to competing at the shorter 75m hurdle distance where she has already won the Scottish schools title this season. The longer distance meant she had the challenge of adjusting her stride pattern. When the gun went, her task was made even harder when she slipped out of the blocks. However, she quickly recovered and overhauled her Welsh and Irish rivals to take the lead. There was a late charge by the Irish competitor but Coirilidh held her nerve and the lead to take the win for Scotland by 0.05 seconds, in a superb personal best and club record of 11.89 seconds.
Under-16 100m hurdles (photo by Bobby Gavin)
Following on soon after was Daniel Ferguson in the Under-16 Boys 100 Metre Hurdles. The Tullibody athlete, also making his international debut, ran strongly over the barriers to finish in a personal best 13.99 seconds, his first sub-14 second run. The Welsh competitor was too fast but Daniel held off Ireland to take second place for Scotland and the silver medal.
Coirilidh and Daniel weren’t finished yet though as they teamed up in the mixed 4×100 Metre Relay. Coirilidh led off for Scotland and ran well round the first bend tracking the Welsh and Irish athletes outside her. Daniel took the baton on the 3rd leg holding off the Welsh athlete and overtaking Ireland before handing the baton on for his Scottish teammate to sprint home for victory. This gave Daniel a gold medal to add to his silver in the hurdles and Coirilidh a second gold medal of the day.
Under-18 400m Hurdles
Emma Mailer is a very experienced international having won at the Celtic Games last year. The Stirling athlete was looking to defend her Under-18 Girls 400 Metre Hurdles title, however she knew she was up against a strong Irish competitor, Miriam Daly, who had competed at the European Youth championships earlier this summer. Emma could not prevent the Irish competitor winning but dug in for the full lap of the track to finish well ahead of Wales and take the silver for Scotland in a season’s best 66.41 seconds.
Elizabeth Thompson was competing in her second international in the 4×400 Metre Relay. She is very experienced in relays having won numerous Scottish titles with Central AC teams and helped Scotland to bronze in 4×300 Metre Relay in the schools international last month. She was running second leg, and with Ireland and Wales choosing to put their top athletes in the first leg, she took the baton in 3rd place. However she showed her experience as she ran a 59 second leg to close the 5 metre gap on the other teams to hand over almost level. This allowed her teammates to overtake the Welsh team in the final leg to finish 2nd behind a strong Irish team.
Central’s Scotland team members and coach
Anna Cameron has made huge strides this season since focusing on Long Jump after winning the Scottish schools earlier this summer with a big personal best 5.55 metres. This earned her a place in the Scottish futures team who were selected by the Scottish schools in addition to the main Scottish team. She didn’t quite manage to reproduce the form she showed at the Scottish schools but gained good experience at international level as she jumped 4.99 metres for 4th. She also gained more experience as she ran anchor leg for the Scottish futures team in the 4×100 Metre Relay.
Overall Scotland dominated the final standings, not only winning overall but winning in every individual age group, helped greatly by the performances of the Central AC contingent.
There were some tasty contests at the Glasgow Athletics Association Miler Meeting in Scotstoun, Glasgow on the evening of Friday 27 July with both East District and Masters’ medals up for grabs in a series of 5,000 Metre track races. The event was punctuated by thunder and lightning storms and heavy rainfall which didn’t stop some top class performances from Central Athletic Club athletes.
While it was Scottish Cross Country Champion Kristian Jones of Dundee Hawkhill Harriers who won the East Senior Men’s race in 14min 6.38secs, he had some top class opposition as Central athletes Alastair Hay (14:12.03) and Jamie Crowe (14:13.77) picked up the Silver and Bronze medals, with Alastair improving his personal best for the distance. Telfer Gray’s first track 5,000 Metres saw him bring home a deserved Under-20 East District bronze medal with a fine 16min 57.98secs effort. In the Masters’ ranks, David Eckersley’s excellent 18min 18.33secs run saw him winning silver in the M55 Scottish Championships.
There were other top performances from Aidan Thompson 14min 36.31secs, in his track debut for the distance while Michael Wright continued his fine season with a 15:07.73 personal best. Matthew Sutherland ran his first track race of the season to record 4:15.55 for 1,500 Metres.
Five Central Athletic Club athletes have been selected to compete for Scotland in the annual Celtic Games Track and Field International to be held at Grangemouth on Saturday 4 August. The competition covers a full programme for Under-18 athletes and a number of events for Under-16 athletes.
The opposition features teams from Wales and Ireland and there will be two Scotland teams on show, the Celtic team and a Futures team with the event giving many of the athletes their first taste of International competition and providing a great opportunity for further progress.
The Central Athletic Club athletes who have been selected for the event are Emma Mailer in the Under-18 Celtic Team for 400 Metre Hurdles and Elizabeth Thompson in the same team for the 4 x 400 Metre Relay. The Under-16 Celtic team features Daniel Ferguson in the 100 Metre Hurdles plus Coirilidh Cook in the 80 Metre Hurdles and both Daniel and Coirilidh also selected as part of the Under-16 Mixed Relay pool. Anna Cameron has been selected to compete in the Scotland’s Futures team in the Under-18 Long Jump and the 4 x 100 Metre Relay pool.
The club’s monthly summer track and field time trials take place at the Stirling University track on Thursday 26 July, starting at 7pm. The events on offer are 100 metres, 200 metres and 800 metres on the track, and long jump and shot put in the field. Registration and warm-up from 6.30 pm.
Central Athletic Club’s men’s team were at Grangemouth Stadium for the third and penultimate meeting of this season’s Scottish Division One Track and Field League, held in warm but blustery conditions. Once again all of Central’s athletes gave of their best and with many of Scotland’s top athletes on show for opposition clubs, Central had to settle for sixth on the day, with the team now in fourth place overall in the league.
Lewis Millar (3) in close order in the 5,000 Metres
The first track event, the 400 Metre Hurdles, saw David Lindsay in ‘A’ string action finishing fifth with a determined 67.79 seconds clocking, while Ruaridh Miller stepped into the ‘B’ event with a second place in a tasty 63.54. The 800 Metres was a high class affair so congratulations to Jack Kerr coming home with a personal best of 2 minutes 00.79 seconds in seventh. It was left to David Lindsay to take responsibility for the ‘B’ race, here also in personal best territory with 2:15.27 in sixth. There was also top quality sprinting on show again from all clubs in the Division with Kieran Halliday finishing a close-up eighth place in the ‘A’ 100 Metres with an improved 11.72, backed up by Ian McDonald taking seventh ‘B’ place in a season’s best 12.09. Michael Wright and Ruaridh Miller were always to the fore in the 3,000 Metre Steeplechase clocking 9:47.72 and 10:00.43 respectively to score excellent points with third ‘A’ and second ‘B’ placings. Tom Chandler looked good as he sped to a tasty 15.67 in finishing a close-up third in the 110 Metre Hurdles. Tom continued his busy day as he was soon back on the track in the 400 Metres, running 52.33 for fifth ‘A’ place. The 1,500 Metres saw yet another personal best from Jack Kerr with 4:11.80 in fifth ‘A’ place while Dale Colley stuck in well to finish fifth ‘B’ in 4:35.26 scooping up more useful points for the Central team. The 200 Metre series had Under-20 Kieran Halliday back in action finishing in eighth ‘A’ place in an improved 23.81 and back-up here from Sean Reilly, taking to the track for the first time in four years, in seventh ‘B’ place with 25.21. Lewis Millar was drafted into the team at short notice and ran a well-judged 5,000 Metres finishing fourth ‘A’ with 16:24.78 while Fraser Logan put his hay fever woes to one side with a determined run of 16:40.25 for second ‘B’ points.
Jack Kerr in relay action
In the field the throwing duties were covered by Graham Porterfield and Ron Todd. Graham threw out to 32.05 metres in the Javelin with Ron throwing 27.57 metres. Graham then produced a best of 30.72 metres in the Discus with Ron‘s top throw here 26.91 metres. The Hammer saw Graham out to a best of 35.47 metres while Ron again achieved further points with 23.48 metres. The Shot Put showed Graham at his best with his 11.66 metres effort taking fourth ‘A’ place, backed-up by Ron’s 7.75 effort. The Pole Vault had Tom Chandler pitted against multiple Scottish International Jax Thoirs, and Tom’s impressive 4.05 metres clearance take second ‘A’ points while Ron Todd was first ‘B’, clearing 3.00 metres. Under-17 athletes Daniel Bruce and Daniel Ferguson were experiencing their first taste of Men’s League action with both youngsters stepping up to the plate. Daniel Bruce’s 1.60 metres High Jump clearance produced much needed points for the team. In the Long Jump, Daniel Bruce reached an impressive 5.42 metres while Daniel Ferguson’s 5.15 metre effort proved to be an outdoor personal best. Daniel Ferguson then moved into new territory with his first ever Triple Jump competition, achieving excellent fifth ‘A’ points with a best effort of 10.97 metres.
The 4 x 100 Metre quartet of Daniel Ferguson, Kieran Halliday, Tom Chandler and Sean Reilly brought the baton home in seventh in a useful 46.15. A much changed 4 x 400 Metre quartet of Michael Wright, Dale Colley, Sean Reilly and Jack Kerr held on well throughout to record 3:45.90 in sixth place. The Guest 100 Metres saw Daniel Ferguson clock an impressive 11.76 in second place in his race.
As always there was great back-up from the Club’s officials through Stuart MacFarlane as a Field Judge, John Dickson as Track Judge plus Tom McMenemy and Bill Gault on Timekeeping duties. The final match of the season is in Kilmarnock on Sunday 26 August.
Mhairi MacLennan receives her prize from Cathy Gallagher
The inaugural Monument Mile Classic, held at the University of Stirling Track on Wednesday 13 June, proved to be a night of top class racing despite the dreich Scottish summer weather and with international athletes to the fore in both elite races.
A co-operation between Central Athletic Club and the University of Stirling ensured the event was appropriately licenced via Scottish Athletics and with all places sold out there was a feast of 12 one mile races held throughout the evening covering athletes from Under-13s to Veterans.
Ben Greenwood receives his prize from Cathy Gallagher
There were wins in both the top male and female races for pre-race favourites Mhairi MacLennan of Edinburgh University Hare and Hounds and Ben Greenwood of Perth Strathtay Harriers with each picking up a winner’s cheque of £100.
The evening started with races for the younger athletes with almost all hitting personal bests for the distance: of the 91 finishers, 83 ran personal best for the mile. In the younger age groups Central athlete Amy Cully won the first race in 5 minutes 40.32 seconds followed home by Carys Gibb, 5:48.57, Mirren Henry 5:54.38, Naomi Howlieson 6:21.66, Ellen Montgomery 6:31.71 and Anna Buchanan 6:31.89. The second race saw a mixture of youth and age take to the track with no less than six Central vests on show and Sandy Buchanan in first with 5:26.30, then Euan Docherty 5:46.83, Aaron Middleton 5:55.45, Gareth Marchant 5:59.38, Ross Lawrie 6:05.77 and Kirsten McStay 6:18.83. Oliver Holden achieved a big personal best in running 5:16.26 and Donald Shaw looked pleased with a gutsy 5:25.00 effort. Under-13 runner Connor Bell continues to underline his potential by running 5:18.37 here ahead of Rosie Eckersley 5:31.10, Euan Campbell 5:32.81 and Ruairidh Burns 5:47.52.
Start of Race 1
Race 10 in action
Under-15 Angus Wright of Team East Lothian impressed with a 5:03.58 clocking as the excitement grew and the quality increased. Central’s Gregor McArthur posted a 5:08.39 time while Telfer Gray should be pleased with his 4:52.52 effort. The tenth race of the night saw determined front running from Jack Kerr with 4:26.12 bringing him the win from experienced orienteer Chris Smithard 4:29.66 with Lewis Dow 4:31.80, Fraser Logan 4:32.09 and Ruaridh Miller 4:33.99 all posting tasty personal bests.
Mhairi MacLennan (14) and Jenny Selman
The elite women’s race saw Mhairi MacLennan and Fife AC’s Jenny Selman take a significant lead from the remainder of the field and Selman fighting hard with Scottish National Cross Country winner MacLennan for 3 laps before MacLennan pushed on to win in 4:54.23 from Selman’s 5:08.16. Race director Michael Wright said: “It was impressive to watch the two athletes go toe to toe for three laps, then Mhairi took off.” Central athlete Lauren McCulloch raced to a personal best of 5:17.93 while Stirling University student Rebecca Craig recorded a fine 5:23.25. The women’s prize fund of £400 for a sub 4:40 mile wasn’t troubled in the wet weather, but the race director was already discussing the possibility of rolling it over for next year to entice more athletes from across the UK to run quick miles at the event.
Ben Greenwood (2) and Ali Hay
As the rain grew heavier the elite men took to the track with a quality field assembled and Central’s Aidan Thompson taking responsibility for pace-making. In the difficult conditions the predetermined sub-four minute mile pace slipped to around 2:06 at the half mile point and when Thomson stepped off with just over a lap and a half to go it was Alastair Hay who moved to the front with pre-race favourite Ben Greenwood, Aberdeen AAC’s Michael Ferguson and Central’s Jamie Crowe in close pursuit. With around 250 metres to run Hay put in a significant kick and at the top of the final bend had a lead of around 7 metres. However 800m runner Greenwood did not give up. “As they entered the final straight it still looked like Ali’s race, but somehow Ben was back in contention and surged past in the last 20m,” said Wright. “How Ali didn’t win, I’ll never know.” The 2010 Commonwealth Games athlete certainly made an exciting race of it to the line.
So it was Perth Strathtay’s Ben Greenwood who took the win in 4:10:48, with Central’s Hay a stride behind in 4:10:87. Michael Ferguson was third in 4:14:59 and Jamie Crowe crossed the line in fourth with 4:15.30, yet another personal best, as it was for Dale Colley with 4:26.58. Again the additional prize fund for breaking 4:05 wasn’t touched so can potentially roll over for next year and, hopefully, another anticipated series of great races.
The event looks like one to put on your calendar for 2019 if you’re after a mile personal best or want to see some great Scottish and British racing. Thanks are due to the great support from the University of Stirling, to Michael Wright and his Central AC team and to the squad of Scottish Athletics officials who assisted at the event.
Central Athletic Club’s Men’s Team made the trip to Aberdeen for the second of this season’s Scottish Division One Track and Field Meetings, held in somewhat cooler conditions than of late. With great individual and all round team performances Central finished fourth on the day, retaining third place overall in the league.
Following the tried and tested league format the first track event, the 400 Metres Hurdles saw Michael Wright again take responsibility as he finished in fourth ‘A’ placing in 67.60 seconds, while David Lindsay again provided excellent back-up here to take third ‘B’ place with 67.00 seconds. The 800 Metres saw Alastair Hay compete in a high quality ‘A’ race, finishing in a close-up fourth place in the tasty time of 1 minute 57.33 seconds. Dale Colley showed improvement from his previous outing finishing third in the ‘B’ event with 2-05.89. There was also high quality sprinting on show from all eight teams in the Division with Kieran Halliday ensuring seventh placing in the ‘A’ 100 Metres with 12.3 seconds, backed up by Matthew Chandler taking sixth ‘B’ spot in 11.9 seconds. Michael Wright and Ruaridh Miller ran strongly in the 3,000 Metres Steeplechase clocking 9-44.57 and 9-49.49 respectively to scoop up great points with second ‘A’ and first ‘B’ placings. David Lindsay ran in the same race as a Guest finishing in an improved 10-41.58. Kai Ligertwood again shouldered responsibility for the 110 Metre Hurdles taking fifth placing in a time of 21.58 seconds after hitting the second hurdle, sending him somewhat off balance. The 1,500 Metres saw a spectacular final lap effort from Aidan Thompson as he reversed a 20 metre lead from his Shettleston Harriers rivals to win by a similar margin in 3-56.92. Dale Colley again proved his worth to the team in taking third ‘B’ spot with 4-11.91. The 200 Metre series had Under-20, Kieran Halliday, back on the track finishing in seventh ‘A’ place in 24.29s and backup from Under-17 Erik Escala as he sped to seventh ‘B’ place with 24.74s. Alastair Hay was in contention on the early laps of the 5,000 Metres, but a loose shoe lace put paid to any winning hopes. A quick stop and re-tying saw Alastair finish in second ‘A’ with 15-20.12 while Fraser Logan picked up yet more points with a gritty run of 15-42.45 for second ‘B’ points.
Alastair Hay in the 4x400m
In the field the throwing duties were covered by a combination of Donavan Webster, Tom Chandler, Matt Chandler and the ever competitive Ron Todd. Matt was close to his personal best in the Javelin with a throw of 38.63 metres with Ron throwing some 29.74 metres. Donavan threw out to 31.27 metres in the Discus, with Tom’s best throw here 29.90 metres. The Hammer saw Donavan throw a best of 29.06 metres while Ron achieved more points with 24.64 metres. Shot Put proved the best points scoring field event for the team with Tom’s 11.34 metres taking third ‘A’ place and Donavan’s 11.08 effort winning the ‘B’ event. The Pole Vault had Ron Todd clearing 3.20 metres and Colin Christie over 2.60 metres. Central’s Under-17s were to the fore in the High Jump with Erik Escala reaching 1.65 metres and newcomer Hamish Nouwens at 1.55 metres. Hamish also proved his worth in the Long Jump with a personal best of 5.33 metres, backed-up by Kai Ligertwood’s 5.11 metre effort. Kai was soon back on duty in the Triple Jump with a best effort of 10.50 metres.
The 4 x 100 Metre quartet of Tom Chandler, Matt Chandler, Kieran Halliday and Erik Escala showed strong running to record 45.86 in fifth spot. The 4 x 400 Metre quartet of Dale Colley, Aidan Thompson, Alastair Hay and Tom Chandler were competitive throughout the race but had to settle for sixth place with an improved 3-39.76. The Guest 100 Metres saw Erik Escala record 12.35 seconds.
As always there was great back-up from the Club’s officials through Stuart MacFarlane as a Field Judge and Tom McMenemy on Timekeeping duties. The third match of the season is at Grangemouth on Sunday 24 June.
Central AC’s junior team competed in the second match of the Forth Valley League at Craigswood Sports Stadium, Livingston. In a busy meeting with three Divisions and 21 teams on show, Central had two teams, one each in Divisions 1 and 3.
Under-13 Boys 75m Hurdles
Central’s Division 1 team put up a strong fight against some great opposition. Robb Ferguson started the event with a great run and Personal Best (PB) in the 75 Metre Hurdles in a time of 13.5s. Connor Bell looked strong in the 1,500 Metres finishing in first place with a time of 4:55.30. Magnus Bryce ran a fantastic 200 Metres finishing in second place with a time of 30.6s attaining the club’s silver standard. Niamh McKinlay achieved the club’s bronze standard in the Under-11 Girls 600 Metres with a great time of 2:02.20 (PB). Jack Sutton threw well in the Under-11 Boys Shot Put finishing in second place with 5.02m (PB) while Catriona Kane also finished second in the Under-13 Girls Javelin with 10.74m (PB). The High Jump saw some fine jumping with Euan Wilbert (a 1.45m PB) and Scott Hopper (1.50m) competing for the Under-15 Boys. Full team list: Alice Cameron, Amy Cully, Amy Johnston, Andrew Twigg, Brogan McMillan, Cameron Darnbrough, Catriona Kane, Connor Bell, Douglas Fleming, Ellen Montgomery, Erin Miller, Ethan Sorley, Euan Campbell, Euan Wilbert, Finlay Marchant, Jack Sutton, Logan Bell, Loren Stewart, Magnus Bryce, Megan Hogg, Mirren Henry, Niamh McKinlay, Rebecca Cumming, Robb Ferguson, Ross Lawrie and Scott Hopper.
Under-13 Girls 1,500 Metres
Central’s Division 3 team are currently sitting in second place with promotion to Division 2 still within reach going into the final. In the Under-11 Boys Lewis Miller (14.6s) and Tyler Gibson (16.1s) each finished in 1st place in their 100 Metre race. The Under-15 Boys also took top spots in the 100 Metres with Jamie McNaught (12.9s) and Adam McGregor (13.7s). The Under-11 Boys and Under-13 Girls continued the winning streak with Ray Taylor (2:04.10) and Douglas Stewart (2:10.50) finishing first in their Under-11 Boys 600 Metres and Carys Gibb (5:21.70) and Mary Kealey (6:04.70) in the Under-13 Girls 1,500 Metres. Central excelled in the field events taking first and second place in 13 out of 16 heats across the age groups. The Under-15 Boys and Girls took on the High Jump with Louise Carroll (1.35m), Megan Dunlop (1.15m), Jamie McNaught (1.53m) and Harris Milne (1.30m). The Under-13 Boys and Girls competed in the Long Jump with Dylan McCulloch (3.46m), Michael Arestis (3.01m), Danielle Abel (3.45m) and Emily Guest (3.19m). Full team list: Abigail Disley, Adam William McGregor, Alex Dunlop, Anna Buchanan, Carys Gibb, Danielle Abel, Douglas Stewart, Dylan McCulloch, Emily Guest, Euan Docherty, Freddie Mills, Harris Milne, Jamie McNaught, Lewis Miller, Leya Gibb, Louise Carroll, Mary Kealey, Megan Dunlop, Michael Arestis, Molly Cleland, Naomi Howlieson, Ray Taylor, Rebecca Watson, Shannon Glen and Tyler Gibson.
A small contingent of Central Athletic Club athletes attended the Glasgow Athletic Association Miler Meet at Scotstoun on the evening of Friday 1 June. With high quality fields and excellent weather the stage was set for quality running and the Central athletes did not disappoint.
The Meet doubled as the Scottish 3,000 metres Championships for Under-17s and Ben MacMillan made full use of the opportunity to win Bronze, in his first race over the distance, in the fine time of 9min 12.90secs. First year Under-20 athlete, Sandy Holl, made a significant downward revision of his personal best with a tasty 9-26.41 effort. Also on show was Aidan Thompson, in his first track race of the season, recording a close to personal best 8-35.45 in yet another high quality race over the distance.
There were two excellent personal bests for Central athletes in the 800 metre races with Under-17 Lewis Dow reducing his time to 2min 0.52secs and Under-20 Lauren McCulloch recording 2-20.09 with both athletes finishing third in their respective races.
The second Youth Development League match on 28 May at Grangemouth Stadium saw some great new personal bests for Central AC athletes in all age groups, resulting in the club moving up a position on the leader board.
For the Under-13 boys there was a new personal best for Robb Ferguson in the 75m Hurdles as he took second place and for both Ethan Thomson and Robb again in the 200m. In the longer distances, Jamie Oldham gained a new PB in the 800m and Conor Bell won the 1,500m. In the field events Robb improved his best in the Long Jump while in the Shot Put, Alex Dunlop also gained a new PB at the heavier 3kg weight. The Under-13 Boys team was completed by Joshua Kennedy, Dylan McCulloch and Ethan Sorley.
Under-15 Boys relay team
Despite injury and illness on the day, the Under-15 boys team produced new personal bests through Sandy Buchanan (300m), Finlay Marchant (200m), Ethan Thomson (800m), Tom Duncan (Long Jump and 80m Hurdles), Scott Hopper (Shot Put and Javelin), Euan Docherty (Discus) and Andrew McLay (Discus and Shot Put). Finlay Muir ran a season’s best for a win in the 800m in 2:12.58 while Tom Duncan won his 80m Hurdles B heat in 13.56 competing for the first time in that event. Euan Campbell, Struan Craig, Euan Docherty, Tom Duncan, Cameron Kerr and Euan Wilbert completed the team.
Under-13 Girls relay team
A number of the Under-13 Girls were competing for the first time in competition, with new personal bests for Brogan McMillan (1,200m), Orly Mitchell Murray (Long Jump and Javelin), Emily Guest (Shot Put), Danielle Abel (Long Jump) and Elizabeth Woods (800m and Javelin) with Danielle Abel, Marissa Welsh, Catriona Kane completing the team.
Under-15 Girls relay team
In the Under-15 Girls team, new personal bests came from Katherine Fowler (100m), Megan Dunlop (200m), Erin Miller (200m), Becky Cumming (300m and Discus), Amy Cully (800m), Grace Tindall (1,500m), Cora Morgan (75m Hurdles) and Shannon Glen (Javelin). Coirilidh Cook won her hurdles race in 11.44s in fine style. Louise Carroll, Naomi Howlieson, Grace Tindall, Ellie Ross, Amy Johnston, Anna Mackinnon and Amy Faunce-Smith completed the team.
A busy weekend of athletics started with the Scottish 5 kilometre Road Race Championships on Silverknowes Esplanade in Edinburgh. A trio of Central runners dipped below 16 minutes in the race with Murray MacLarty and Fraser Logan finishing virtually together in 15 minutes 42 seconds while Under-17 Ben MacMillan came through with an impressive 15:58 timing.
There was another strong showing from Central Athletic Club Men’s Team competing at the first match of the Scottish Division One Track and Field Men’s League held in excellent conditions in Grangemouth. Another display of all round commitment saw Central finish in third place on the day.
Michael Wright (3) in the 5,000 metres
With the normal league format, the first track event, the 400 metres hurdles, saw Michael Wright shrug off the effects of his previous weekend’s Scottish Marathon win to claim third ‘A’ placing in 64.54s. Not to be outdone David Lindsay showed good form over the hurdles to land third ‘B’ place with 66.12s. The 800 metres saw Dale Colley back on his local track clocking 2:11.75 in fifth, proving he had not conquered a mid-week illness while Fraser Logan, fresh from his previous night’s 5,000 metres race showed some impressive finishing speed to claim sixth ‘B’ spot with 2:07.56s. It was good to welcome back Andrew Sweeney to Men’s League action and here he finished fifth in a quality 100 metres with 11.98s, backed up by Cameron Smith who used all his experience to come through in second in the ‘B’ race, clocking 12.02s. Ruaridh Miller showed great resilience in the 3,000 metres steeplechase clocking 10:17.28 for fifth in spite of running two laps with only one shoe, while David Lindsay again underlined his worth to the team with fourth ‘B’ points in 10:53.46. Kai Ligertwood shouldered responsibility for the 110 metre hurdles taking a worthy fourth placing in a time of 19.91s. Andrew Sweeney was back on the track in the 400 metres, finishing fifth ’A’ in an excellent 52.30s clocking. The 1,500 metres saw Fraser Logan finish fifth ‘A’ runner with a near personal best time of 4:18.14 while Dale Colley provided more ‘B’ points in fourth place. The 200 metres series saw Cameron Smith back to the fore, taking sixth ‘A’ points with 24.32s, backed up by Under-20 Kieran Halliday in fourth ‘B’ placing with 24.26s. The 5,000 metres saw Michael Wright again prove his commitment to the team with second ‘A’ place in 15:34.54 as did Ruaridh Miller as he provided more points with fifth ‘B’ placing in 16:50.26.
In the field the throwing duties were covered by Graham Porterfield and Ron Todd. Graham recorded a discus personal best of 32.31 metres for third ‘A’; won the shot put with 11.38 metres; had a 32.78 metres javelin throw and completed a busy day with a hammer throw of 38.28 metres in third, picking up excellent points in all events. Ron weighed in with second ‘B’ points in the discus (27.46 metres); second ‘B’ javelin (29.39 metres) and fourth ‘B in the shot put with 8.07 metres. Conditions for the pole vault were, for once, favourable and here Under-20 athlete Matthew Chandler won the event with an outdoor personal best of 4.20 metres while Ron Todd again produced excellent second ‘B’ points with a best clearance of 3.10 metres. Matthew also contested the high jump and again proved his quality credentials with second ‘A’ placing as he cleared 1.85 metres. Under-17 athlete Erik Escala proved a more than useful addition to the team and here high jumped to 1.70 metres taking second ‘B’ points. Erik was also to the fore in the long jump with a best of 5.66 metres in seventh ‘A’ placing. Kai Ligertwood was pleased with his second ‘A’ place in the triple jump with a best of 10.72 metres.
The 4 x 100 metres quartet was supplemented by the versatile Fraser Logan on the final leg, finishing off from strong runs by Cameron Smith, Matthew Chandler and Kieran Halliday and the team finishing in fourth with 48.71s. The Guest 100 metres saw Kieran Halliday record 11.76s to win his race while Erik Escala (12.18s) and Ian McDonald (12.25s) should be pleased with these early season runs.
As always there was great back-up from the Club’s officials through John Dickson, Stuart MacFarlane, Tom McMenemy, Bill Gault, Richard and Ronnie O’Grady plus Gillian Marchant and Kenny Hislop.
Overall placings on the day saw Aberdeen again in first place followed by Falkirk Victoria Harriers, Central, Inverness, Shettleston, Pitreavie, Victoria Park Glasgow and Kilbarchan.
Decathlete Tom Chandler was competing at the British University Championships in Bedford over the weekend and his classy performances included personal bests in shot put – 12.37 metres, high jump – 1.86 metres and pole vault – 4.45 metres in qualifying with possibly more to come.
The Forth Valley team got off to a good early season start with a third place in the Scottish Women’s Athletic league on home turf at Grangemouth Stadium on Sunday.
In the senior ranks for the first time, Central’s Anna Cameron was third in long jump with 5.08 metres, and was timed to 13.26s and 27.68s for 6th places in 100 metres and 200 metres. Amy Gullen won the Senior high jump with 1.65 metres. Catriona Laing also transferred to senior ranks with a fine 2nd in Senior 400 metres in 59.19s. Rosie Eckersley 4th, though Under-17, also moved up to take on seniors with a fine 3,000 metres in new personal best of 10:54.05.
The Under-17 races saw fine competition, with Emma Mailer first off and put in a storming run to win the Under-17 300 metre hurdles in 45.35s. Lucy More achieved a personal best as she took 6th place in Under-17 100 metres. Elizabeth Thompson showed good early season form with 42.34 for 3rd in Under-17 300 metres. Katie Sharkey just lost out in a tight Under-17 hurdles with 11.98 for second place and was 6th in a quality 200 metres with 26.86s, with Emma Mailer taking ‘B’ 200 metres race win with 26.74s. Briagha Cook comfortably took a win in ‘B’ hurdles race with 12.19s
Sister Coirilidh Cook took the win in the Under-15 hurdles in 11.68s and Amy Cully made her debut for the team and took a big chunk off her personal best as she took second place in the ‘B’ Under-15 800 metres with 2:30.32.
The Dunblane Road Race is taking place on 27 May and all the money raised will go to The Dunblane Centre. The adult race is 12km, starting at 1pm, and follows a 2km youth race at noon. The organisers are trying to get as many participants as possible to help raise funds for the centre.
The club now has a supply of reflective slap bands for wearing on your wrist or ankle when you are training to help you get noticed by drivers. Price is £1 each, and they are available at reception at Stirling training.
Even if you aren’t training in the dark at the moment, there will be another winter at the end of the year!
Cameron Milne – fastest individual time of the day
The Scottish Road Relay Championships saw both Central Athletic Club’s men’s and women’s teams defending their 2017 titles in this event. For the men, Central having achieved either first or second place over the past 10 years there were both high expectations and reputations on the line. For the 17th year, the event took to the car-free paths and underpasses of Livingston, with short legs of 3.15 miles alternating with long legs of 6.2 miles and 4 legs for women and 6 legs for men.
Michael Wright with Corstorphine on his shoulder
As expected, Central were close to the front from the start of the men’s race with Murray MacLarty giving his all to put Central in early contention with a 16min 14sec effort over the first short leg. Cameron Milne was given responsibility for the next long leg and here came home in 29mins 31secs to put Central into first place with the fastest long leg of the day. Matthew Sutherland’s third leg of 16min 25secs saw Central maintain their lead with Corstorphine AAC, Edinburgh AC and Shettleston Harriers all in close pursuit.
Medallists Wright, Milne, Sutherland, Colley and Hay
The fourth leg showed a shift of fortune as Corstorphine AAC moved through into first in spite of Michael Wright’s strong effort of 31.26 on his long leg. Dale Colley’s determined fifth leg chase of 16.23 saw the gap grow to some 45 seconds and it was left to Alastair Hay to try and pull back this deficit over the final long leg. In the event the challenge proved too much for the experienced Central runner as he completed a 29.56 leg some 67 seconds behind Corstorphine, after almost 2 hours and 20 minutes of running, but 2min 32secs ahead of Edinburgh with Shettleston in fourth so continuing Central’s record to eleven years.
It was a very new Central women’s team, with only one of the quartet having the experience of being in one of Central’s previous podium teams. Fiona Davies set off in fine style on the short leg, to bring the team home in 16th place amongst 44 starting teams with a time of 20mins 45secs. Claire Houston was pleased with her long leg time of 39mins 44secs taking the team forward by 2 places. Natalie Stewart then put in a fine run of 19mins 26secs for the next short leg to bring team to 10th place. Lauren McCulloch completed the team strongly with a final long leg with a time of 40mins 4 secs and 11th place.
Central Men’s B Team of Fraser Logan (17.07), newcomer Ian Elliott (38.41), David Lindsay (18.30), Donald Shaw (37.55), Iain Dunsmore (20.52) and Colin Alexander (40.44) acquitted themselves well. An Over-50’s Men’s Team tackled a four stage challenge through David Eckersley (18.37), Charles Graham-Marr (40.23), Hugh Buchanan (20.57) and Colin Sinclair (48.02) all sticking well to the task throughout. A somewhat decimated Over-50’s team of Cameron Campbell (24.15), Allan Gall (47.34) and Raymond Milne (22.52) all had good runs but had to finish as an incomplete team while Mark Logie was the sole finisher in the second Over-40 team finishing his leg with 23.09.
The final race of Central Athletic Club’s cross country series was held in Kings Park, Stirling on Saturday 24 March and with fine spring sunshine the recent snows were soon forgotten.
They’re off – race start!
With some 45 youngsters taking on the one mile challenge there was a fast pace from the start and it was Under-13 Connor Bell who held his form throughout to win in the fine time of 5mins 3secs. Euan Campbell (5.10) chased all the way to the line followed through by further competitive runs from Euan Docherty (5.28), Ruairidh Burns (5.29) and Ryan McGuire (5.46). In this same age group Innes Brown completed the course in exactly six minutes leading in Andrew Twigg (6.18) and Douglas Fleming (8.17). It was Joshua Kennedy (5.20) who prevailed in the Under-11 category with another superb run while Owen Eckersley (5.35), Aaron Middleton (5.38) and Ossian Arkota (5.44) provided promise of a rosy future for the Club. Oliver Ditchfield (6.29) showed his endurance credentials as he headed further solid performances from Conall Paterson (6.41), Cameron Pollock (6.43), Dylan McCulloch (6.51) and Gordon Crichton (8.08). Under-15 Finlay Brown also continues to impress and here finished in 5.49 while debutant Adam McGregor crossed the line in 7.08. The Under-9 Boys has proven to be a competitive age group this season and again it was Ray Taylor (5.26) who caught the eye with an inspiring run with Tyler Gibson (6.03), Jack Sutton (6.13), Douglas Stewart (6.19), Noah Kennedy (6.20) and Logan Bell (6.41) all in hot pursuit.
Grace Tindall had a strong and confident run as she again headed the Under-15 race, as first girl on the day with a 5.18 effort. In the Under-13 category Melissa Turnbull proved the quickest on the day as she finished in an excellent 5.24 ahead of further fine efforts from Anna McKinnon (5.47), Mirren Henry (5.54), Caitlin Bradwell (6.04), Mary Kealey (6.05), Summer MacLean (6.08) and Megan Dunlop (6.32). Leya Gibb continued her fine run of form to head the Under-11 Girls with a 6.04 timing ahead of further enthusiastic performances from Niamh McKinlay (6.19), Leah Brown (6.24), Katy Cullen (6.37), Emma Anderson (6.44) and Iona Griffen (6.54). It was also good to see Tabetha MacKenzie (7.11), Connie Bateman (7.16) and Sophie Appelbe (7.19) all finishing strongly. Sienna Shepherd’s 7.04 effort topped the Under-9 Girls standings on the day with further good runs from Ember Mulhearn (7.11) and Ciara Middleton (8.00).
Once again there was a large turnout of Club volunteers and parents who helped to make this another successful event.
Under-15 Girls – Scotland East (black) and West (blue)
The Inter-Counties Cross Country at Loughborough were held on Saturday 10 March on what can only be described as the muddiest cross country course imaginable. The whole venue and large parts of the course were a porridge of deep mud.
The highlight race of the day for Scotland was the Under-15 Girls race with Scotland West taking the team golds following by Scotland East with the team silvers. It is the first time in an Inter-Counties Cross Country that Scottish Districts have won two set of team medals in the same race. Playing her part in this little piece of history was Central Athletic Club’s Carrie Banks who followed up her ninth place in the Scottish National Championships by closing in the East team’s counters on a jubilant day for Carrie and Scotland East.
The penultimate races in the Central Athletic Club’s 2017-18 Cross-Country Series were held on Saturday 10 March on a challenging course in Callander with some 25 runners competing, all coping well with the course and the incessant rain.
Start of U13, U15 race
First off was the combined Under-9 and Under-11 race over a hilly 1.25 mile course and here it was Joshua Kennedy who led home the runners with a classy 9min 31secs clocking. Aaron Middleton (10.42) stuck well to the task to finish second with Alex Dunlop (11.17) also finishing well in third, ahead of further gritty runs from Ossian Arkota (11.25), Henry Crossley (12.48) and Conall Paterson (13.46). Under-9 winner Jack Sutton (11.21) also caught the eye as he headed in further top efforts from Tyler Gibson (11.27) and Noah Kennedy (12.21).
Amongst the Under-11 Girls it was again Elizabeth Woods (12.18) who headed the field with another mature run. Here was good back-up from Niamh McKinlay (12.39), Iona Griffen (13.43), and Tabetha MacKenzie (14.15). Ember Mulhearn (14.17) was again the sole Under-9 Girl and continued to show promise with another accomplished run.
The Under-13 runners were also faced with a testing course of approximately 1.5 miles and here Ryan McGuire (11.15) showed his strength to finish ahead of Euan Campbell (11.25), who in turn held off Ruairidh Burns (11.26). Euan Docherty finished well with 11.38 as did Cameron Darnborough (12.42). Dharma Damvelt (13.38) headed the Under-13 Girls from further good performances from Caitlin Bradwell (13.48) and Mary Kealey (14.09). The Under-15s faced the toughest test of the day with a 1.75 mile run with Morgan Francis (15.40) taking the Boys’ race ahead of Finlay Brown (16.37) while Grace Tindall again showed her ‘can do’ attitude with a 16.00 clocking.
Thanks are due to Sean Scott and his group of helpers who provided and excellent event in trying conditions.
The Scottish Cross Country Championships were once again held in Callendar Park in Falkirk on a bright, cold day and excellent underfoot conditions on this traditionally testing course for all age groups.
Central’s Senior Men receive the historic trophy: Aidan Thompson, Michael Wright, Cameron Milne, Alastair Hay, Conan McCaughey and Scott McDonald
Highlight from Central Athletic Club’s viewpoint was the record-equalling eight in a row Senior Men’s Team title plus encouraging Team silvers for the Under-17 Men and Team bronze for the Under-20 Women.
There had been some talk prior to the Championships of Corstorphine AAC hoping to end Central’s seven year winning streak in the Senior Men’s Team event. On the day there was certainly a challenge but Central’s yellow and blue vests soon made their way into top placings to ensure the Team title was retained. Top counter on the day was Alastair Hay in fifth with a classy 33min 58secs clocking over the undulating 10,000 metre course. Aidan Thompson showed real determination to finish ninth (34.25) while Cameron Milne (13th; 34.50) worked well throughout. Scott McDonald (18th; 35.24) showed his normal strong running while Conan McCaughey (25th; 35.32) and Michael Wright (32nd; 35.46) ensured the Club closed in with 102 points, with Corstorphine in second on 122 points and Shettleston Harriers on 149. Matthew Sutherland (34th; 35.54) provided the necessary back-up to the scoring runners.
Scott McDonald (20) and Matt Sutherland (31)
Aidan Thompson (32) and Alastair Hay (11) in the early stages of the Senior Men’s race
As the senior runners streamed through there were further improved performances from Murray MacLarty (42nd; 36.25), Fraser Logan (48th; 36.34) and Scott Brember (87th; 37.44). Euan Jack looked committed throughout to finish 189th in 40.31 and there were further strong runs from Neil Cameron (220th; 41.34), Ross McNaught (231st; 41.57), David Eckersley (282nd; 42.51), Donald Shaw (295th; 43.14), Will Hensman (296th; 43.17), Gordon Appelbe (354th; 44.35), Colin Alexander (363rd; 44.50) and Robin Mussett (397th; 45.58). Fraser Purves (410th; 46.27) just held off Hugh Buchanan (411th; 46.28) ahead of Iain Dunsmore (430th; 47.01), Jens Subke (478th; 48.22), Ben Noad (486th; 48.43), Mark Logie (558th; 52.49), Colin Sinclair (562nd; 53.08), Allan Gall (567th; 53.23), Cameron Campbell (574th; 53.51) and Sandy MacLarty (619th; 63.36), an impressive 29 finishers from Central AC.
A selection of the Senior Women’s team
Central’s Senior Women were also defending champions, but with a thinner team further weakened by illness, seventh club was a good outcome by the team’s top four counters. The course was the same as for the men and this suited marathon specialist Fanni Gyurko, who fought hard for her excellent 8th place finish in 39.40. Catriona Buchanan in 24th place (42.06) and Kim Timmins (36th, 43.38) also featured well to the front end of the race. Hazel Dean (83rd, 47.16), Amy Hendry (102nd, 48.35), Kirsten McStay (116th, 49.59), Becky Hay (130th, 50.55) and Alison Curry (232nd, 58.26) all featured well in a race with 271 finishers.
Fanni Gyurko (4) heads the start of Senior Women’s race
Central’s Under-17 Men were always in contention for Team medals in their 6.0 kilometre challenge with Ben MacMillan leading Central’s effort in 18th (22.43), backed-up by further sound performances from Tom Graham-Marr (23rd; 22.55), Telfer Gray (25th; 23.10) and Sandy Holl (29th; 23.19), the team just short of topping the podium by two points. It was also good to see Gregor McArthur pit himself against the best in Scotland finishing in a creditable 65th placing in 26 minutes exactly. Central had just a single Under-17 women with Lizzie Stansfield showing up well in 30th, 29.34.
Kate Gallagher showing strongly in the Under-20 race
The Under-20 Women’s race of 7.5 kilometres was a tough battle with Central’s Kate Gallagher pushing hard amongst the leading group for early laps of the race. In the end Kate lost the tussle for the individual bronze medal, finishing in fourth place with 29.19. However, she did not come away empty handed as some great running by team-mates Fiona Davies (15th, 32.50) and Eleanor Hanson (33rd, 36.50) gave them bronze team places.
The Under-15 Boys were always going to find their 4.1 kilometre course a tough challenge and here it was Finlay Muir who led Central’s team effort in 38th placing (15.30). Kyle Howie also showed committed running to finish 47th (15.42) ahead of Lewis Dow (64th; 16.12) and Thomas Woods (81st; 16.50) as the Central team finished ninth overall.
Carrie Banks on way to 8th place
In the Under-15 Girls’ race, Carrie Banks had a fantastic race with 9th place in time of 15.58. Grace Tindall (78th; 18.51) and Naomi Howlieson (103rd; 19.31) also ran with great commitment.
The Under-13 Girls’ race was the first race of the day and it looked to go off fine, but the technology of chip timing failed, and the back-up of video recording only took the first 60 finishers so full timings and placing were not available. This did not stop Central’s team making a fine showing. Melissa Turnbull (16th; 13.08) was highly impressive but there were also quality runs recorded from Anna MacKinnon (39th; 13.54), Summer Maclean (45th; 14.05) and Catriona Kane (14.30).
Start of Under-13 Boys
The Under-13 Boys’ race was also over the same 3.1 kilometre course as the Girls and here it was Connor Bell who again caught the eye in finishing ninth (11.48). Cameron MacMillan (26th; 12.28), Euan Campbell (84th; 13.21) and Jack Campbell (150th; 14.18) completed Central’s eleventh placed team with another strong effort from Ross Lawrie (135th; 14.29) in this highly competitive age group.
The Men’s 5K road race at the Armagh International event, in Northern Ireland continues to grow in stature with a reputation for fast times. This year’s race, on Thursday 15 February, saw the highest quality race in the history of the event so no surprise that a number of Central Athletic Club athletes used the opportunity to record fast times.
Alastair Hay, competing for Scotland in the event, ran a superb new personal best on the roads of 14 minutes 30 seconds. Aidan Thompson also reduced his personal best to 14.39 while Chris Smithard was just outside his fastest with 15.06. Michael Wright underlined his current form with a 15.14 clocking and Matthew Sutherland also ran into personal best territory recording 15.15.