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The Hunters Bog Trot

21/04/2014

On Saturday afternoon, HBT running club held their annual race, the Bog Trot. There are few cit ies  that can boast to hosting a hill race  in their centre, and Edinburgh is one of them.  Jacob Tangey and Mo Khan  took advantage of the glorious weather to represent DRC at  Holyrood  this weekend, and Mo reports as follows...

"It was slightly too warm to be comfortable, and there was no breeze whatsoever. The race is fairly short at 6.4km and involves a total ascent of a modest 240m. However, experience from previous Bog Trots has taught me that these stats belie just how tough a race this is.

There was the usual succinct pre-race briefing warning us of the dangers of tussocks and gravity. HBT accounted for a third of the entrants. And as is 'de rigueur' at any hill race where there are masses of the brown vest brigade, the start was accompanied by a loud chant of H—B—T! The route starts with a gentle run along Hunters Bog, which was extremely dry underfoot, leading to the first sharp and steep climb up to Salisbury Crags.  A nice run along the top of the Crags, with great views over Edinburgh’s skyline, leads runners back down to the start line. From here we made our way to the 2nd climb. This was a relentless steep ascent up the Radical Road and by now, lungs are burning and legs feel like jelly. We then headed back to the floor of Hunters Bog for a final torturous climb up the Crags followed by a fast descent.  

The race was won by Andrew Lawler of Edinburgh Uni in 28m 23s with Scout Adkin of Moorfoot leading the ladies home in 32m 56s.

Jacob is currently gearing up for the Highland Fling and found it frustrating to lose places on the climbs, but showed he had great speed by recovering those places on each the fast descent sections. He finished in 24th position in a time 33m 43s. I finished off a hat trick of hill races in one week with a 73rd placing in a time of 43m 36s. This was an improvement of 35 seconds on last year’s time, and a pb for me on this course. It also felt good to finish ahead of a trio of runners in brown vests on their home turf!    

One of the highlights of this race is the prize-giving where there are often some hilarious spot prizes handed out. Jacob and I agreed we were both rather relieved not to suffer the ignominy of being awarded the prize for first male who finished behind his partner!

Big thanks to Zoe for cheering us on, encouragement was definitely needed to get up the Crags!"

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