Findlay Wild wins Riverbank Splodge

Runners set out at the start of the Riverbank Splodge. Photograph: Abrightside Photography

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The fifth of Lochaber Athletic Club’s winter league races took place in almost perfect weather conditions in Glen Nevis on Sunday January 8.

With an amended course due to path upgrading, the 56 runners faced an extended climb right from the start as they began the tough seven mile course but this was by no means the only difficulty they faced as they progressed from the forestry paths across the Lower Falls and then on to the mud, water, tree roots and the boggy terrain of the banks of the River Nevis and a final climb up ‘heart attack hill’ to a contouring run to Achintee and a final mile on the road to Claggan Park.

Findlay Wild (Lochaber AC) accelerated in to the lead from the start, a lead he never relinquished as he took first place in a time of 45:15 two minutes clear of second placed John Yells (Lochaber AC) with third place going to Steven Trail (Lochaber AC).

In the women’s race, Lisette Walter (unattached) took first place in 55:57 just ahead of Kate Jenkins (Gala Harriers) who finished in 56:23 and was also first FV40, third place and second FV40 was Amanda Blackhall (Lochaber AC) in a time of 58:10.

Other notable performances came from Craig Mattocks (first MV40) in fourth place overall (50:06), Clyde Williamson (first JM) in sixth place overall (50:47), Alan Smith (first MV50) in ninth place overall, Mike Connolly (first MV60) in 23rd place and Helen Legget (FV50) in 34th place.

Once more, it was great to see such a large turnout of runners both local and from further afield to take part in what is a very successful, competitive and challenging winter league.

The league is not only successful due to the number of participants but due to the number of willing volunteers who organise the various races, so many thanks to Graham Macnab, Shonda Macnab, Corrina Mertens, Ian Adams, Ellen Morrison, Brian MacDonald, Bryan Johnson, Anne-Marie MacLeod, Bill Cameron, Elaine Campbell, Archie Campbell, Helen Smith and Davy Duncan for all their help with this race.