Last year I entered The Bellahouston Road Runners 5k, and it was my first encounter with what would become my running club. Little did I suspect last year that I’d be helping marshal the race this year! So a brief write-up…
I had been planning to run the race, thinking I needed to complete the race to fulfil the short race criteria for the club championship. It transpired a race back in February down in Greenock had counted, and given marshal volunteers were a bit thin on the ground, I decided I’d give up my race (and pursuade Frances to help out too). To be honest my focus is on the Glasgow half marathon at the moment, so was a bit tired from a long run I’d done yesterday, so no bad thing.
I was happy to help wherever it would have been useful, and that meant assisting with the timekeeping. And sandwich making. Frances and I made four platters of sandwiches (The club has a reputation to upkeep when it comes to home baking) on Saturday afternoon, almost all of which seemed to get demolished after the race.
I also got the dubious honour of starting the race. The megaphone was a bit of a disaster (it didn’t work very well at all), so club coach John took over by shouting with his far more impressive voice the various bits and pieces we needed to announce. Glasgow’s runners were spared my witty banter and planned motivational speeches 😉 ! But having 250 pairs of eyes staring at you as you start the race (with a lovely loud air horn) was something I’ll not be rushing to do again! Terrifying. The 15 minutes of peace and quiet after the start were soon over though when the lead runners returned (A winning time from Paul Sorrie of Shettleston Harriers, in 15.28 was impressively fast).
My job was to assist the time keepers and race-number recorders, and arrange for results to be shipped back to race HQ by hoodwinking club colleagues who’d completed the race to take results back (or do it myself). The 3-4 minutes between about 20-24 minutes was pure adrenalin, and only one nasty backlog, which my timekeeping colleagues did exceptionally well to get through. No major disasters ensued (Full results are available here), and I’m told it all went well.
My friend Keith (unattached at the moment, but mulling joining a club) recorded an impressive 18:56 time on what was his first ever 5k, and some excellent performances from many of the clubs members, including a sub-20 watch time (which is probably more accurate when you account for delays in crossing the start line!) by group-B coach Jonathan.
Back to the Palace of Arts (so named after the Empire Exhibition of 1938, and nothing whatsoever to do with sports) for prizes, food, de-stressing and a good natter.
A fun morning all said, time keeping stresses aside, and I think Frances even enjoyed herself marshalling out on the course, although not sure it quite made up for the lack of lie-in this weekend (a work related early start on Saturday didn’t help either)!