Balmoral 15 mile trail race – 23rd April ’17

A bright but cold spring afternoon greeted 438 runners for the culmination of a varied weekend of running at the 20th Run Balmoral Races.Saturday saw the runners have the choice of 5k or 10k races, coupled with children’s races. Sunday saw larger fields tackle a run, cycle, run duathlon or a 15 mile trail race. For the totally insane runners could tackle all four events over the weekend, comprising The Devil of Deeside Challenge.

The 15 mile trail event started in the shadow of Balmoral Castle (Royalty not at home), heading west following views over the river Dee, looping back through ancient pine forest, opening onto open hillside affording views of snow-capped Lochnagar and Mount Keen. Eventually dropping down to the finish at Balmoral.

Sam Hesling completed this excellent event in 1hr 29m 21s, a clear winner. 4th placed Brian Bonnyman, wearing the familiar Westerlands yellow vest claimed the first vet 40 prize in 1hr 31m 51s. The female category winner, Ellie Buchan finished in 1hr 43m 17s.

Among the local finishers, Ron Milne placed 88th overall in 1hr 58m 11s for 3rd vet 60, Liz Milne finished 9th vet 50 in 2hr 23m 00s and Jim Masson finished 371st I 2hr 44m 20s. Jim’s wife, Sue, tackled the 5k event, her first competitive run.

Ron Milne