Nairn Highland Games HM – 19/08/2017

Nairn Highland Games Half Marathon. 19AUG17 Many months ago I saw an advert for this race. I knew it was not long after my return from operations in Africa and thus saw it as a good opportunity to test my speed after sweating off a few kilograms out there.
Parking a mile or so away from the venue in any available spaces we could find provided us with eyes on the first and last section of the course, which we then walked along to the registration tent, guided by the lights of the fun-fair ahead. Helpful volunteers told us where to register and where to change, conveniently right next to the start line. We quickly retrieved our numbers and thus prepared ourself for the beginning of the race. Approximately 265 runners began the race (if I heard correctly due to two people talking on different tannoys at once!). The starting gun went off and we began the race with a parading lap around the race track within the playing field then headed off along the coast heading towards Brodie.
On an initial map assessment I surmised that the route would be fairly flat but I was slightly off, with the route quickly climbing out of Nairn and continued to have long, slight climbs throughout. The weather held out until about 45mins into the race with a heady downpour giving a bit of relief from the wind matching our pace from behind and humidity making it a little uncomfortable. After the 7 mile turn-around point the 15kph wind was now in our face but we were heading to the finish, powering through it. With 4 water stops, hydration was not an issue and the whole route was well marked and marshalled . Although the public roads remained open, traffic was light and drove at a considerate speed. Quiet countryside just a couple miles north of the A96 aided this. Returning back into Nairn on what felt like the only downhill segment was short respite for my, now very weary, legs. I was trying to maintain a 1hr30 pace throughout and those last few miles were extremely tough. Constantly glancing at my watch I remained steadfast in my attempt to hit that time. By now I was beginning to overtake a lot of people who were starting to slow, a few of those were were from the Nairn club so that was a nice little morale boost. Talking of morale, this morning I told my wife, “meet me at this point of the course”, where I pointed out the 7 mile point on the map. “and make sure you have some banana for me!” she agreed, I even reminded her as I left the house. Of course, I’m running along prior to the seven mile point looking forward to this little energy fix. When I finally arrive she tells me she forgot it! Morale took a heavy dive, it might have just given me a placebo affect but, damn was I looking forward to it! Anyway, back to the race.
Back in Nairn people were offering their support, with the harbour and Maggot quite busy. Although appreciated, lots of people were very ignorant of the race and did not bother to create space on the path from the Maggot, back to the finish. This resulted in me and the majority of others doing what felt like a slalom for the last mile. I even had a chap on a mobility scooter overtaking people on the footbridge practically blocking it up. Somewhat aggravating! This is something that should be managed better in the future as I feel someone could easily take a tumble and get hurt, either racer or pedestrian. On arrival at the arena, marshals once again guided us the route back into the finish. My heart rate was now hitting 190bpm, it had creeped over 180 around 2 miles from the finish. I was sapped, doing the final lap of honour felt like an eternity, people’s cheers and claps were hardly breaking through the physical torment I was currently in. I eventually crossed the line to only find it was not the finish line and had to double back and go to the correct race exit, Hopefully they don’t add to my official time! I staggered across the line, my body was spent. I collapsed on the floor in a pathetic, panting heap. I was kindly handed a bag of treats and my medal.
Offering congratulations to others crossing the line including several others wearing MRR tops (I believe there was 6 of us racing in total), I gorged on a couple of bananas given to me as I got my soul back (least someone gave me a banana!). Looking at my watch, it tripped the half marathon point at 1hr 30mins and 2 seconds perhaps 200m prior to the finish line. I’d got my PB and got my 1hr30 so I was pretty damn chuffed. Hard work training with MRR has really paid off, so thank you all those who have trained with me and cheered me on at races throughout the season. Roll on the cross-country season!
Report by:  Jason James

Marafun 2017

Moray Road Runners had a good entry for this year’s Marafun, below are the reports from our 2 Captains.  Colin and Karen.

Mens Teams

This year’s marafun saw 3 men’s teams enter (the most for a good number of years).

This was despite pull-outs over injury and illness, it was a credit to the club that the spaces were filled extremely quickly.

Kenny Wilson took total control of the start of the race, establishing a massive lead and lapping everyone by the time he had finished his leg.  He was backed up by Ryan Mclennan, James Wilson , Stephen Carmichael and Colin Green. The team finished 1st in 2hr 26 min.

The “B team” of Bill Murray, Kevin Morrison, Neil Purdie, Garry Henderson and John-Paul Downey finished in a very respectable 4th in a time of 2hr 50mins.

Our 3rd men’s team was the “C Fit team”. Simon MacDonald, Paul Jamieson, Toks Osunrinade, Brian Milne and Bernard Salmon all exceed their expectations to finish in the top half in a credible time of 3hr 25 mins.

Great effort by everyone, looking forward the next one in 2years time.

Ladies Team

So, here was me thinking that with all the new members I was a shoein for at least 2 ladies teams for Marafun 2017, maybe even 3 teams!!

However, I massively underestimated the popularity of the ladies and their happiness in running for everybody else!!

Thankfully I was able to pressgang, I mean have 4 willing volunteers to join me in representing Team Yella….. Sally, Eileen, Karen(me!) Suzanne and Justine …. Looking a pretty speedy bunch to compete with the 3!! Mens Teams for MRR.

Sadly Suzanne had to bail out last minute with a horrible bug and Elspeth stepped into the gap…

The Marafun is a great fun event,  incorporating 5 team members running 8 laps each of the High Street in a relay to complete a full marathon, organised bi-annually by the Elgin Rotary Club and raising money for local charities.

The day dawned bright and cool with a light wind…. Perfect running conditions…. We gathered in a sea of fluorescent yellow on the Courthouse steps for a team photo before all the respective captains sorted their teams out and issued the instructions … Run fast, don’t drop the baton, beat everyone else and meet in the pub after the prizes …. Simples

The weather Gods were relatively kind… temperate with light wind : check …. pouring rain for all bar the first runners : check …. We were all a bit damp by the time we were done … I actually think it rained to catch out Sally who ran first for us in the sun…. and then didn’t feel left out when she got soaked running again later for Bijou!

All 5 team members ran brilliantly … ably supported by Suzanne who came out and cheered us on…along with fabulous support from all of Team Yella, both runners and non runners alike…. and we finished in a massively respectable 3 hours 8 minutes, 14th overall and the first full ladies team to cross the line …. Title Defended!!

Here’s to 2019 ….. and we didn’t get thrown out of the pub either 😊

Report by:  Colin Green & Karen Norvell

Metro Aberdeen 10km – 06/06/2017

A Sunday of races – 28/05/2017

This weekend Moray Road Runners were spread across the country running in various races and at various distances.  I have put down the races and the results below:

2017 Bratislava ETU Aquathlon European Championships

Our very own Kevin Morice qualified for this event and produced an excellent performance to finish 14th in his class.  Well done Kevin on competing on the international stage




Great Manchester Run Half Marathon

Louise Cartmell was our lone entrant to this race.  She ran a phenomenal race finishing in 1:25:31 and being 2nd lady.

Very well done to Louise on an excellent HM



Castle of Mey 10km (North District Champs)

We had a good turn out of MRRs for this, the North District Champs, with some good running, the results are:

James Wilson ran a super pb finishing 4th in 34.41.

Colin Green 9th, – 3rd Male Vet and 3rd Male Vet in the ND Champs

Stephen Carmichael 13th

Simon Dobbs 16th?

Andy Alexander 25th?

Michelle Donaldson-Slater – 42:59, 3rd lady overall and 2nd lady in ND Champs

Castle of Mey Results

Edinburgh Marathon

Kevin Morrison and Karene Ferrier were both running this marathon.  Both of them were running for a charity and in memory of a loved one.  This was Kevin’s first Marathon but Karene is an old hand at Marathons, Karene was running with her partner Hazel, so they would be running together

I’m sure he should run and not take a bus 🙂

around the course, this is Hazels 1st Marathon as

well but I’m sure that Karene kept her going


Kevin finished in 4:02:29

Karene finished in 6:08:17


Nairnshire Challenge

Steven Morrison participated in this event today.  This will be the final Nairnshire Challenge.  The Nairnshire Challenge is a 30-mile sponsored duathlon organised annually by the Rotary Club of Nairn.

Steven had a really good race on the run section and cycle even with some bad cramp .  He finished 9th out of 323 in a time of 2:34.58.  About an 18min Pb


Report by:  Robert Bruce


Inaugural Stirling Marathon – 21/05/2017

Baker Hughes 10km – 14/05/2017

Kenny Wilson finished 2nd to Aberdeens Broc Drury in the Baker Hughes 10k today!

Kenny found himself a reluctant leader for the first 8k and after the hill found Broc just that bit stronger, Will Mackay AAAC finished in 3rd.

Another course pb for Kenny though by 39sec finishing in 31.52.
Chris Smith finished in 43.20, Kimberley Clarke was the other MRR taking part but not got her finish time yet! Well done you 3👍🏼

Report by:  Carol Sim

Benromach 10km/Northern Scot Series – 07/05/2017

5km Scottish Championship Race – 05/05/2017

There were 3 MRRs on the start line for the Scottish 5k Champs, once again held along the promenade at Silverknowes, Edinburgh.

The race is completely flat, follows a figure of 8 loop and is regarded as a fast course hence the 482 runners this year.

The very blustery conditions made the first and last km extremely challenging but there were still fine performances from

Kenny Wilson (14th) in 15.03

Cameron Main (21st) in 15.14

Gareth Jenkins (68th) in 16.18.

Outstanding run from Cameron, now based in Stirling and still only 17 years old.

Thanks to Carol and George for their on-course support and hopefully see a few more MRRs there next year.


Report by:  Gareth Jenkins

Dufftown 7 Stills 10km – 30/04/2017

2nd Lady

Sunday saw the 2nd 7 Stills 10k at Dufftown as part of the Spirit of Speyside whisky festival.  Numbers were well down from 94 last year to just 50. But it was my first race as a MRR.

Nice mix of road and farm track with some muddy bits.  The route takes you past 7 stills located at Glenfiddich, Balvenie, Convalmore, Parkmore and Mortlach distilleries.  Course was well marked and plenty of friendly marshalls too.
4 MRRs took part with PJ doing the double after the Archiestown 5k in the morning.  After some confusion Justine was awarded a trophy for 2nd female finisher.
Refreshments were laid on in the Commercial Hotel afterwards – plenty of fancy pieces.
I hope this event grows and become as popular as Archiestown hopefully it will continue to be promoted and supported.  Nice bling though.
Report by:  Jo Burton

Archiestown 5km – 30/04/2017

I’d been aware of this race for the last few years, but running in ‘Archiestown’ always conjured up visions of crampons and ice axes. However, having driven the Cooncil bus up there several times recently, I realised that it wasn’t such a hostile environment after all. (On a good day)
Nestling high in the hills above the Spey Valley, Archiestown commands amazing views towards the Convals and Ben Rinnes. The village sits at 751 feet, and I knew that all 3 roads out of the town are downhill.

And so it was that a record field of 158 runners, including 14 yellow vests, lined up on the windy, cold, start line looking at a very inviting 1 mile downhill stretch. I’m sure I’m not the only one that had a Garmin boasting a 1 mile PB! But what goes down must come back up again, and a steady climb back to Archiestown ensued…

An uphill finish really tested the stamina of all the runners, but the thought of a huge spread of food spurred us on. A foolish comment to Michelle before the race that she wouldn’t be fit for cake after eating my dust for 5K backfired as expected. (A sprint finish saw her thrashing me by a huge 2 seconds)

Inverness Harriers had a very strong presence at the race and, apart from the Jog Scotland awards, had a clean sweep of the prizes. First MRR home was James Wilson in second place, with Michelle Slater finishing as 3rd lady.

There were lots of spot prizes (I didn’t win any) and even more raffle prizes (I didn’t win any) and the spread of food was very impressive. ( PJ took advantage of this to get properly fuelled up for the Dufftown 10K in the afternoon)

This event is going from strength to strength and it’s easy to see why. Well organised and very friendly with views to rival anywhere. Well done to Team Bain for all their hard work.

The race is the first in the Speyside Series – next race is the Dufftown 5 hills followed by the 12 Mile Windmill Challenge. (See MRR Calendar for details)

Report by:  Simon MacDonald