Monthly Archives: September 2007

Cosmic Ladies 2nd in SHR Championship

Congratulations to Linda Smith, Gillian Clunas and Sue Buchan – their run at Morven on Saturday earned them 2nd female team and 2nd female vet team, and also completed the SHR championship for Cosmic Ladies – we were 2nd female team and 2nd female vet team overall. Fife Ladies won but we beat all the rest!

Congratulations to Elaine Stewart who gets the silver medal for the F50 division, and to Linda Smith and Elaine – the only Cosmics to complete the championship this year.




Morven was a Scottish Championship race this year so there was more competition than usual for the top places. However, Jason ran well to finish 14th. Bob had an excellent uphill race but was taken by Dennis on the descent. Steve’s lungs have obviously recovered well as he finished 39th. Also well done to the Cosmic ladies – Linda, Gillian & Sue who claimed the 2nd ladies team. Results. Photos.

14 Jason Williamson Cosmics M18 00:50:51
18 Dennis McDonald Cosmic M40 00:51:59
23 Bob Sheriden Cosmic M40 00:53:23
30 Richard Lang Cosmics M18 00:55:36
39 Steve Helmore Cosmics M40 00:57:22
53 John Colegrave Cosmics M50 01:01:21
61 Gary Gutteridge Cosmics M50 01:03:11
68 Derek Johnstone Cosmics M40 01:05:55
88 Murray Bryce Cosmics M50 01:12:27
90 Linda Smith Cosmics F40 01:13:12
93 Gillian Clunas Cosmics F40 01:15:51
98 Susan Buchan Cosmics F40 01:19:24

Cosmics at the World Masters

There were some fantastic runs from the Cosmics who went to the World Masters this year. Keith Varney was 7th M50, Anita Hamilton was 10th W50 and Elaine 21st W50.

..and ex-Cosmic Tracy Brindley won gold in the W35!

Results at

Raasay Rumble

Photos from this mountain biking event here. Looks like despite the rumbles of thunder the Cosmics enjoyed getting very muddy!

Devils Beeftub

Two Cosmics fresh from an Adventure race the day before made it to the far south Devil’s Beeftub race. Short & sharp this little race saw its numbers swell to far greater than previous years mainly because it now doesn’t clash with the Ben and it was a championship event. Richard Lang was 27th in 24.50 and Elaine Stewart was 77th and 2nd F50 in 32.50 and now Elaine is currently 2nd F50 in the SHR championships. Results & photos.

Cosmic Vets team 10th at Comrie Relays

Well done to the Cosmic Vets team who competed in the Comrie Relays last Sunday. It’s worth a read of one of the write ups on the SHR site as various navigational blunders made for some interesting results on the various legs and overall. Even with the Cosmic team there were some minor navigational mistakes but a great performance from Keith on the last leg and some general good running gave them an overall 10th position.
Reports, results & photos at SHR and more photos on the flickr site.

Ben Nevis Report

Last weekend Anita, Peter and Sean went to Fort William to take part in a classic British race up Ben Nevis. The route is anyway you please, between Claggan Park, the summit and back to Claggan Park, but almost everyone erodes their way up and down shortcuts between the zig-zags of the tourist path from the end of the road at Achintee.

The 1st September was warm and damp with low cloud all along the west coast. We couldn’t see the sea from our bunkhouse, never mind the top of the hill! With the race not starting until 2pm, there was plenty of time for a leisurely breakfast before dropping the car off at Claggan Park, thus avoiding the mahem of parking on the verge, between the police cones!

When the field began to assemble, it became apparent how many folk turn up (up to 500) and from all over the country. When we found Peter, he was already preparing by psyching himself out of a good race. ‘It’s a long way, but we’ve done bigger and longer’ was the general feeling. A bit of mutual fear may have helped in the end. Eventually, the pipe band began to march and we all filed in behind them for a walk round to the start. We handed over our starting cards and soon were running around the field before joining the road to Achintee. The field didn’t really have much chance to spread out on the road as it was choc-a-bloc, nevertheless there was much overtaking and being overtaken. As the path narrowed, we all ran two a breast and tried not to get left behind by those around us. The path stays wide most of the way up, but old hands and following newbies (i.e. me) cut off up steep, narrow, muddy short cuts, gaining higher sections of the path. There was no time to look around, so I’ve no idea how much distance we saved…

The ascent goes on for some time. Anita got ahead of Peter and Sean early on and Sean didn’t finally leave Peter until about half way up. Dodging tourists and trying to stay upright on wet, loose rock are common difficulties for a hill runner, but they all seemed more sustained on The Ben. Particularly, tourists and walkers were definitely out in force and were a blessing and a curse as they applaud and feed you, but get in the way when trying to overtake.

After 57 minutes, Ian Holmes runs past me (downhill) and collectively all the runners nearby mutter ‘bloody hell’ under their laboured breath. From now until the summit, the biggest hazard is oncoming runners and any rocks they might kick down. This lasts for 20 or so minutes, when suddenly the path becomes wide and shallow and we all start to run. Some folk are definitely struggling and others are getting food and drink down, but most just want to get up and then back out of the colder air on top. It took me 1h35m ish to get to the top.

The way down is definitely harder than the ascent, particularly high up in wet weather. The rock is very loose and slippy, with lots of small drops of 0.5-1m or so to weave around while over taking. At one of these I managed to catch Anita up. Eventually, this gives way to a path, which we leave at the first zig-zag. The route down to the various burns is mostly grassy, which feels very steep and slippy after the forgiving(?!) rock. Below the grass we cross the biggest river (Red Burn?), where tourists and marshals watch us. Beyond this we can scoot easily back on to the path for another good part of the descent, before again getting into the muddy short cuts. The short cuts are by now just a torrent of mud and a mixture of techniques is used – clinging on to bracken, diving through the bracken, or sliding through the mud. After the final shortcut, there is a couple of hundred metres of downhill track before the road and already the legs begin to sense that gravity is no longer their friend – they have to work! Feeling like jelly, they wobble past the even bigger crowds at the Achintee car park and desperately chase the few runners we can see. By now, runners are spread out, about 10m apart. After what seems like endless road (about 1 mile), we get back in to Claggan Park. With just 3/4 of a lap to go, my name is read out and the legs give everything they’ve got, chasing down that last runner before the finish. All of a sudden it’s over…

Anita and Peter finished shortly after me, both being in the zone through the park, putting in excellent performances. In summary, a great race and well worth the effort of entering 11 months before hand! Lets hope for more Cosmics next year.


Ben Nevis 2007

Well done to Sean, Anita and Peter who completed the Ben Nevis Race in foul conditions last Saturday.
225 Sean O’Sullivan 2:21:58
265 Anita Hamilton 2:28:18
331 Peter Larkin 2:40:59

Full results at here and a few photos here.

Wonder who’ll be starring in an Adventure Show soon!