Chatelherault Easter Trail 10k

Emily Jackson writes - My running has been a bit up and down over the past few months, and I felt like all the time chasing was becoming a bit tiresome. So in the spirit of trying something different I allowed myself to be talked into entering the Chatelherault Easter Trail 10k.

The event was being organised by South Lanarkshire Leisure and Culture and was taking place for the first time. It looked like it would be a great family day with races for the kids over 1k and 3k plus races for the adults over 5k and 10k. There would also be prizes for the best decorated Easter bonnet in the 1, 3 and 5k races. I promptly signed myself up for the 10k, my 5 year old daughter for the 1k and looked forward to the 26th March to enjoy the festivities.

However, the day itself was a bit of washout weather wise! Due to my daughter having a bit of a head cold, I decided to just head out myself with some work mates and carry on with the race. I believe the 10k was sold out with a capacity of up to 190 runners, however the weather certainly put many people off as there was no more than 70 runners present.

We arrived at Chatelherault park, picked up our numbers in one queue, and then waited in another for our timing chip which came in the form of a large paperclip which was held on a paper bracelet. It definitely felt a bit odd, however I’m used to running with a watch so the sensation wasn’t too off putting!

On the email we received prior to the event, it said there would be a bag drop. This ended up being a gazebo on the grass, so my bag was pretty much a muddy mess at the end unfortunately, and no baggage labels were given.

The race was due to start at 10.30am, with the 5k starting 10 minutes afterwards. The 5k (1 loop) and 10k (2 loops) consisted of a run through Chatelherault on trail with lots of undulation, including one big climb on the cycle path, and then onto grass. I have to be honest and say after the first loop I started wishing I’d taken the 5k option. However I do like to know my route so I definitely found the second loop better as I knew what to expect.

Once finished, I handed my chip over to be logged and got my finish time which was quite far off from my watch time (chip was 54:17, watch 52:51), and waited on my friends to finish.

I did enjoy the race as I do like events like this, and would enter it again. This was the first year it had been held, so I think some teething problems in the organisation were to be expected, and probably the miserable weather added a bit of chaos to the mix.

That being said, it has definitely inspired me to enter more trail races, and it was quite refreshing to run without constantly checking my watch as these trails are definitely not PB material!

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