This is a tale of two races: the race to get to the Whangie Whizz and then the race itself and a big thank you to all the Westies people for their support in both.
I hadn’t volunteered to help this year because a colleague is retiring and it had been suggested that we would be having a night out on the night of the race. Then, due to volcanic ash, she didn’t make it back to work last week and it turned out that the night out was postponed to May. Meanwhile, I’d been given a hospital appointment at the Western for 17.50 which I’d kept because I thought I was missing the race anyway. I went along for the appointment early with all my gear in the car and an assurance from Dave that I could run provided I made it to Queen’s View by 7.15.
Race no 1
I came out of the hospital at 18.37, sprinted to my car and decided to give it a go. Partick was clear. The road up to Anniesland was busy but by judicious choice of lanes I made steady progress. My target was to be at the turn-off from Bearsden Road by 19.00. I cannot believe the number of cars that have to make a right turn off that road after Bearsden Cross! At the turn off by 19.02 so kept going but the worry now was where to park? That was solved as I approached the fishery entrance and saw a group waiting on the bus and no bus in sight. Ellie assured me that the bus would wait so down to parking, expertly guided in, quick trip to the loo and a sprint up to the bus with Fiona phoning Dave to let him know I was on my way. Thanks to you all, I made it to the start line with time to spare.
Race no 2
There were quite a few Westerlands vests in the race line-up. Before he started the race, Dave insisted that we all practise to greet Charlie at the Auchineden trig point and then we were off. The start was the usual lung-bursting slog uphill followed by the "watch your feet" section from the stile to the point where the path branches. Nigel had us doing some fancy footwork off and on the kerb at reps on Monday – now I see what that was about. Just after the Whangie, the route changed and we headed towards the trig point and then off to the right. The reason? A rather high fence in which Dave had either found, or created, a convenient gap. As I don’t pay a lot of attention to who’s where in the race I can only say that at this point Alison West was a bit ahead of me and Paula was just behind. I preferred the new descent to the road as it was more runable than the old one which the cows had turned into a real ankle threat. Back onto the old route up to the trig point and I’m narrowing the gap between me and Alison. I managed the "Hail Charlie" part of the greeting between gasps, then it was across the top towards the radio mast. Boggier than the return by the path but it brought back memories of Wednesday night runs from way back when we used to go this way. Not gaining on Alison now but she’s not pulling away from me either. On the steep descent to the stile my eyes teared up and I could barely see so I had to slow down for the rocks. Then it was down the hill with someone called Eddie(?) racing me in to the finish. The prerace info said boggier, a bit longer and a bit more climb but I prefer the new route. The thought did cross my mind on the way out that I shouldn’t try too hard this time to allow for future PB’s but then I forgot. Oh well, just have to keep doing hill reps! Well done and thank you to everyone who helped make the race happen. Next year I hope to be back and able to help.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.