Neil McCartney completed the arduous Glenmore 24 Hour Trail Challenge and has shared his story..
Having travelled to Glenmore on Friday afternoon, my support crew member Bobby McLennan and I set up camp within the race compound.
At 11:30am on Saturday we headed down to the race briefing which included a session by the race doctor on staying safe and well while on the course. At noon the race commenced and 49 x 12 hour runners and 120 x 24 hour runners set off. My strategy was to pace myself sensibly at the start so that I would hopefully reach 60 miles by midnight. This would set me up with needing only 40 miles in the second half of the race. As darkness fell around 9pm, I had reached 48 miles and by midnight I was at 58 miles, just 2 miles short of the half way goal. Things were going to plan and my support crew and me were happy with my physical and mental state and the amount of food and liquids that I was taking onboard,
I continued through the 8 hours of darkness with my head-torch and by daylight had amassed 80 miles. The downhill section of course was taking its toll on my legs and the lap times had extended from an average of 55 minutes to around 65 minutes. At this point I was double checking the figures to ensure there was room to manouvre should an issue arise in the latter stages of the race. Thankfully I managed to dig deep and crossed the line at 23 hours and 25 minutes with a distance of 100 miles. This however was not the end of the race as it is a 24 hour race and the participants were encouraged to continue running round the compound on a quarter mile loop. The extreme uphill and immediate downhill on the shorter laps and the fatigue from the previous 24 hours was taking its toll on me. During the last half hour I completed another 1.36 miles while absorbing the carnival-like atmosphere.
By the end of the race I had managed to cover 101.36 miles in 24 hours which left me in 7th place for age (MV40) and 28th overall and I joined a staggering 38 other athletes who broke the 100 mile distance that day.
I am delighted with how the race had turned out at the weekend. It has been a massive commitment for most of 2018 by me and a lot of race management knowledge by Bobby during the event. I would also like to thank the surge in both cash and online donations to my Just Giving page which not only spurred me on in the race but also has me exceeding the £2000 mark for the MyName'5Doddie Foundation.