The upward curve of the Babcock 10K series is set to continue in 2020. News that title sponsors Babcock will be involved again for a fourth year confirms that the late spring three-race programme is now one of the key events on the Scottish race calendar.
High profile elites, flat fast courses and popularity among the west of Scotland's top clubs are some of the factors that have made the Babcock 10K series a target for many runners. If trends continue, organisers anticipate 2,500 participants across the series, up by 1,000 on the first year when Babcock took over from the original sponsors Polaroid.
Times have been impressive as well, with sub 30 minute clockings for the men in both Helensburgh and Dumbarton this year and the women having pushed their record to 34:00 exactly.
Weynay Ghebresilassie ran what was one of the fastest times in Scotland in May, in Helensburgh, with a new record in 29:32. Adam Craig was a shade over 30 mins in second place with 30:03.
Luke Traynor of Giffnock chased Tewelde Mengisteab’s record of 29:40 in Dumbarton as he ran out an easy winner unpressed in 29:55. Ghebresilassie strode to a comfortable victory in the final race on Glasgow Green in 30:51, 41 seconds outside his own course record.
Ghebresilassie, who recently achieved British citizenship in his adopted country, was fifth in the recent Great Scottish Run half marathon behind some world-class Kenyans.
Meanwhile Fionnuala Ross picked up two victories with records both in Dumbarton, 34:00 and Shettleston 34:12, her home club. Fife dental student, Annabel Simpson took the honours in Helensburgh in a new course record of 34:49. Elspeth Curran, another dentist was second in Dumbarton in a quick 34:27 and third on Glasgow Green.
Start Fitness and their More Mile brand will be the running retail partner again. There will be more than £6,000 worth of prizes for the leading finishers, category winners and teams. More than £2,000 of this will be in cash prizes for the elite athletes.
Every finisher in each race will receive a unique commemorative medal and a goody bag containing More Mile running accessories. There will also be generous spot prizes spread throughout the field in each race.
Babcock’s Managing Director at HMNB Clyde, Gavin Leckie joined Team Clyde for two of the three races and was impressed with how much the Babcock 10K Series has become part of community life. Gavin said: "We are delighted to be involved in the race series again this year and are looking forward to signing up Team Clyde again and getting back into training.."
Entries are now open at Entry Central. There is an ‘early bird discount’ of £10.00 off the series entry until the end of October or the first 200 series entries. This reduces the cost from £45.00 and £51.00 to £35.00 and £41.00 for affiliated and unaffiliated runners. Individual races are £21.00 and £23.00 respectively. Series entrants will receive a special Babcock 10K technical t-shirt designed by Helensburgh AAC runner and local artist Stuart Scott.