They came from near and far, they braved the freezing temperature and they negotiated with the snow covered and icy paths to run in Scotland's only Christmas Day race. Giffnock's sixteen year old running sensation Luke Traynor cantered over the Glasgow finish line in 17 minutes and 49 seconds to make history as the winner of Scotland's first ever Christmas parkrun. In her 58th race of the year, Ayr's Toni McIntosh joined Luke in the record books by winning the women's event and placing second overall with a time of 19:15. In his first ever parkrun Luke's father, who looked remarkably like Santa Claus, closed the race, placing 30th in just under 30 minutes. Luke's mother also got in on the act, placing 29th in 29:53.
It wasn't just the Traynors that made the event a family affair though as the Dinmore household turned out in force with father and son, David and Jamie, showing their competitive streaks by recording the only two PBs of the day, whilst mother and daughter, Gill and Kirsty, assisted with the race organisation. Richmond based husband and wife team Peter and Karen Weir took advantage of their holiday to join in the 5k run through the picture postcard setting of Pollok Park. Karen who is the event director at the Reading parkrun finished just ahead of her Scottish husband. The parkrun family was further represented with Basingstoke parkrun director Euan Bowman making the journey down from a family visit in Perth to join in the festive fun. Joining the seasoned parkrunners were five first timers who wouldn't have noticed that the race had to be run on an alternative route to avoid the iced-over, hilly glade. The out and back route, though still snow-covered with some icy patches and a difficult 180 degree turn, proved to be popular as it allowed runners the opportunity to see the gap between themselves and their counterparts.
Post Race Patter
With a relatively small number of runners and just a handful of volunteers it was an intimate but enjoyable affair but sadly there was little opportunity for lengthy post race banter as, with the Burrell Cafe being closed, runners made their way home for their morning coffee or glass of celebratory bubbly before recounting their tales over Christmas Dinner.
The Magnificent Eight
Extra special thanks are due to the magnificent eight volunteers: Drew Turnbull; Dudley Walker; Jill and Kirsty Dinsmore; Victoria Gilroy; Tom Keenen; Gillian Scott and Alan Dempster who gave up their Christmas morning to allow a little piece of history to be made.