What a week!
SEDS athletes have been busy in both Scotland and Colombia.
As many of you will know, this past week the 6 day incorporated Euromeeting. This is essentially a 'B' international, held for athletes to experience the terrain and set up expected at WOC in 2 years time.
Sprint was first up, and we were missing our top 2 sprinters (racing in Colombia). SEDS were also helping to organise this day, and with the first showing of the big screen and GPS trackers of the week, we were in for a treat! The courses started in the housing estate, which with its' tiny alleyways and tricky route choice was harder than expected for most. The course then took you into the quarry area, which caught a few out with the change of pace and vegetation. Alasdair McLeod was the highest placed Scot in the men's class in 32nd (1 minute 23 seconds down on the lead of Martin Hubmann, SUI). In the girls race, Hollie Orr was top Scot (and top Brit!) in 16th position.
The middle followed the next day, taking place in a new area south of Cawdor at Loch of Boath. The big screen was again in attendance and with this, the spectator control, commentary and GPS tracking, it was a spectator's dream (we won't mention the rain...). Today it was Doug Tullie's time to shine as top Scot in 21st position, although he was closely chased by Hector (4 seconds and 3 places behind). Claire was the top Scot in 23rd with Hollie less than 30 seconds behind, just over 3 minutes down on the lead of Alva Olsson, Sweden.
Whilst everyone else running the 6 day, were battling for positions at Roseisle, the Euromeeting athletes were resting up for the last, but long day. Saturday (day 6) hosted the classic race at Coulmony and Belivat. The courses started particularly tough, with the majority on some typically boggy moorland. This sorted out the men from the boys before we'd hit the forest on the way back to the assembly. The last loop was gruelling with quite a lot of climbing (or so it felt after being out over an hour already!). In the mens class, there were 1 minute starting intervals, which led to quite a few 'trains' forming - but who could hang on to the engine driving the train?! The Czechs and Swedes showed their strength by taking the top 6 between them. Top Brit was Graham Gristwood of FVO in 10th, with top Scot, Doug Tullie, only a couple of minutes back in 15th. The Tullie boys were having a good day with James the 2nd Scot a couple of minutes back, shortly followed by Hector. In the women's class, Jess Tullie was top Scot in 22nd, with Hollie showing a consistent week coming in 2nd Scot, nearly 3 minutes behind.
The 3 races were totalled to give overall positions:
14th Doug Tullie
20th Hector Haines
43rd Jamie Stevenson
46th Alasdair McLeod
23rd Hollie Orr
34th Jo Shepherd
Meanwhile out in Colombia, Scott and Murray were racing in the World Games. First up was the sprint race, where Murray finished 6th and Scott 7th!! Amazing how we come to expect these sort of results from the boys - doesn't make them any less impressive though! Edinburgh-based Tess Hill finished 9th in the women's class too! Scott rested up in the middle, however Murray raced round to another incredible result - 14th! Unfortunately the mixed-sprint relay didn't go to plan with a mis-punch that saw the team disqualified. However, the performances they all put in show huge potential for mixed-sprint relays in the future (to be seen at WOC next year). Murray finished 1st place on a first leg that certainly shook up the field! Watch out WOC2014...!
I'm sure there will be reports on the World Games soon that will make far more entertaining reading (including armadillos...), keep an eye on both Murray's blog: http://murraystraining.blogspot.co.uk/ and Tessa's: http://tessahill.blogspot.co.uk/
See you at the 11-man relay in Oban on the 14th September!!!