Each summer the Club Championship is contested in a series of handicap races, only open to members of the club, around a set course in Holyrood Park. The route is just less than three miles in length and is both quick and challenging.
These races are held on three consecutive weeks early in the summer term, with handicaps based on each individuals performances during races and training over the past year, and decided upon by the Captains. This results in a close and exciting finish, and anyone has a chance of winning, with the slowest going off first and the fastest last.
We start at the second roundabout in the Park (from the Pollock entrance) and head round the road in an anti-clockwise direction. Bear along the path to the left of St.Margaret’s Loch, cut left and up between the ruined chapel and Haggis Knowe and through Hunter’s Bog. The whole race is decided on the steep hill right at the very end. Kilometre markers are shown on the map. Clicking will take you to a zoom-able version.
The first of the three races is generally regarded as a warm-up – to make sure everyone knows the route, and that we’ve got our handicaps right. Handicaps can change right the way through the three week competition. However, that’s not to say Week 1 won’t count, as the best two results (in terms of position) for each competitor will be totalled up after Race 3. The runner with the lowest total wins alcohol, and can boast about being the Club Champion for the following year.
There are also prizes for the first runner home each week, as well as for the fastest men’s and women’s time over the three weeks.