Cambuslang Harriers to the fore in the Down by the River Races

The 10th Annual Down by the River 10K and 3K races sponsored by Achilles Heel, MacDet and BG Fencing were held in dry conditions in sharp contrast to last year's heavy rain.  Cambuslang impressively supplied the first 7 runners from the 172 finishers.


After a head to head battle between Robert Gilroy and Stuart Gibson Robert proved the stronger in spite of having raced and won the Stranraer  Half Marathon the previous day.  Iain Reid was a good third followed home by Ben Hukins, Gordon Robertson, Shaun Butler, first veteran O40 Frank McGowan and Gordon McIntyre.  Not surprisingly Cambuslang won the team prize.   The club also supplied the first veteran O60 in Sandy Eaglesham.


In the lady's race Hungarian athlete Fanni Gyurko who had finished 5th in the previous week's Scottish Cross Country Championship smashed the course record while finishing 13th overall in the race.  Alex Lamond from the host club was second and led Kirsty Anderson and Vikki Semple to team gold.  There was further success for our ladies with Lyn Angley securing the Veteran O40 prize.


Cambuslang runners were also prominent in the accompanying 3K event.  U17 athlete Gavin Smith led from start to finish with his U17 team mate Eamon Carr in third.  Both athletes had helped the club to win the Scottish Cross Country title the previous week.  U13 Niamh Riggins was second female to add to her Scottish U13 1500 metres bronze medal the day before.


Special thanks is due to Owen Reid for his role as race director with support from Iain Crawford and to Colin Feechan and Dave Thom who were responsible for race registration and results and to all our members who helped on the day to make the race a success.  The club also appreciates the continued support of our sponsors Achilles Heel, MacDet and BG Fencing and also to Morrisons' Supermarket who provided the post race water and fruit.  The final thanks goes to Motherwell AC who provided such a large turnout in the 10K and indeed to all our entrants.


David Cooney


Ronhill Cambuslang Harriers retained the AT Mays Trophy awarded annually to the top performing male club across the 5 different age groups in the Scottish Cross Country Championships.  This is our 5th consecutive award of this trophy and indeed  the club has  won the trophy on 21 out of a possible 28 occasions.  This is an outstanding and perhaps unheralded achievement and one which all our runners, coaches, officials, parents and supporters can be proud of.

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Pride of place at the championship goes to our U17 boys who won team gold thanks to the sterling efforts of Struan Paton, Gavin Smith, Joshua Boyle and Eamon Carr who gave their all to finish 7th, 9th, 12th and 34th  with Lewis Tracey and James Duffy in support.  Our U15 boys and U20 men performed well to lift bronze team medals.  U15 Christopher McLew in 12th position led home the Cambuslang challenge with Drew Pollock 16th, Ryan Stephen 37th and Ruairidh MacGregor 38th.  Keir Crawford and Andrew Carey completed our runners in this age group.  Ryan Thomson who was just outside the medals in 4th place after a cautious start was our first U20 counter  with Craig Jardine 12th, Ross Stephen 31st and Scott Sommerville 38th with Brendan Carey in close attendance.

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Our senior and veteran men with a number of absences due to work commitments and injury finished a solid 4th.  Robert Gilroy only 8 weeks away from turning 40 put in his best national finishing position to finish 18th with Iain Reid, Jamie Reid, Willie MacRury, Kenny Campbell and Ben Hukins completing our counting sextet.  We had another 21 athletes cross the finish line – Shaun Butler, Stan McKenzie, Kenny O'Neill, Gordon McIntyre, Craig Harrow, Justin Carter, Simon Gold, Tony McCutcheon, Alick Walkinshaw, Des Dickson, Mick O'Hagan, Coiln Feechan, Dan O'connell, Paul,Kernoghan, Iain Nichol, Ken McInnes, Scott Hunter, Willie Fairley, Eddie Carr, John Kelly and David Stirling.  This was the first experience of running the national for a number of our athletes and hopefully they will be back next year for more enjoyment or was it punishment?

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In the opening race of the day our U13 boys finished a respectable 8th team due to the efforts of Michael Black, Sean Friel, Arron Grew and Robbie Woods.  Back up came from Euan McLew, Mark Cassidy and Liam Angley.

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There were also some good performances by our ladies.  Eve Mackinnon was a close 5th and only 10 seconds away from a bronze medal in the U20 ladies race while Sarah Benson only 11 months after giving birth finished an excellent 12th and with good support from Alex Lamond, Kirsty Anderson and Jennifer Reid the senior ladies achieved 8th place for their best ever finishing position.  Caitie Gorton Phillips was our 5th lady to finish.

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Niamh Riggins led the U13 girls home in a creditable 34th place and with Carla Fay, Shona Carey and Chloe Burton in support recorded 13th team.  Other U13 girls to finish were Hannah Lang and Maura McKinnon.   In the U15 girls race our first finisher was Christie Dalgleish in 48th spot followed by Lauren McEwan and Katie Moss.

Many thanks are due to our coaches for their hard work throughout the year in all weathers and to all our supporters on the day who offered their encouragement to our athletes.  A big thanks also to Barnie in his capacity as our tent or tentsman.  Also thanks to Scottish Athletics for staging the event.

David Cooney