Balmoral Runners

Crowe Aims To Fly High

This weekend's Run Balmoral will feature a selection of top names across all distances...

Great Britain cross country international Jamie Crowe is one of the top names heading for Deeside to compete in in this weekend's Run Balmoral meeting (22-23 April) - but the 27-year-old Dundonian has still to decide whether to focus on the 5K, 10K or the 15 mile trail race. He might even tackle all three!

The event, now in its 24th year has attracted more than 4,000 entrants of all ages who will tackle a programme of eight races. It gets underway on Saturday with its 1.5K, 2.5K, 5K and 10K races. Sunday features the Apollo duathlon and the Bristow 15 mile and 3 mile trail races. There's also the epic AberNecessities Devil of Deeside Challenge for those doing all four adult races.

Crowe has been keen to compete in the popular north-east event for a number of years, but a combination of other commitments and injuries have prevented him from realising that objective. He said: "It's an event I've always wanted to do. Quite a few of my Central AC club mates have run here in the past, including Butchy (Olympic Games 5000m runner Andy Butchart, who won the 5K at Balmoral in 2013) and they've all spoken very highly of it.

"I'll definitely do the 5K on Saturday then I'll decide whether to do the 10K afterwards. I'm coming up for the weekend so I'll probably run in the 15 mile trail race on the Sunday anyway."

Crowe's opponents in Saturday's 5K include Aberdeen AAC's former Scottish 1500m track champion Michael Ferguson who has been in fine form lately. Both men look capable of challenging the course record of 14:24 set 12 months ago by Sean Chalmers (Inverness Harriers), who is an absentee because of injury.

Scotland international Constance Nankivell (East Sutherland), who finished third at Balmoral as a 15-year-old in 2015, celebrates her 23rd birthday on race day and will be among the top contenders for the women's 5K title. Her opponents include Jenny Bannerman (Inverness Harriers) who has a fine record at Balmoral, having won the 5K in 2016 and 2018 as well as placing second in 2017 and 2019.

Great Britain mountain running international Andy Douglas competes in the 10K hoping to maintain his impressive Balmoral record which has yielded seven victories stretching back to 2010. His opposition features another former Scottish 1500m track champion - Myles Edwards (Aberdeen AAC), who is competing at Balmoral for the first time since 2011.

Yet another Scotland international, Banchory's Ginie Barrand, is strongly tipped to test the women's 10K course record of 36:07 which she set last year. Her clubmates Nicola MacDonald and Chloe Gray (Metro Aberdeen), second and third respectively last year, will be looking for another Metro clean sweep. Moira Davie (Forres Harriers), who won 15 mile race in 2015 and 2016, is also likely to challenge.

Meryl Cooper (Deeside Runners) will celebrate her selection to represent Great Britain in this summer's world trail running championships by competing in the 15 mile trail race. The Banchory athlete may fancy her chances of eclipsing the course record of 1:37:31 set by Carnethy's former world mountain trophy winner Angela Mudge ten years ago.

More details can be found at the Run Balmoral website.

Image: Run Balmoral

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