Led to the start by a bagpiper…joined at the finish line by a man-sized dog called Jog Scotty…dancing the Gay Gordons . not your typical race weekend! Since 2015, Glasgow FrontRunners have hosted a 5-mile race called OUTrace in August each year. As it takes place early (9.30am) on a Saturday morning, it gives us an excuse to go up on the Friday and spend the weekend in this great city. This year, to enable more people to attend, the club paid for a minibus with driver to transport a group up north. In total 19 of the club took part in the weekend, with many doing their first trip to this race and their first 5-mile race – it is an unusual and interesting distance to run.
The minibus trip started in typical Frontrunner fashion , with some wine passed around and cake on tap. Some of us had an early night, but others sampled the Glasgow nightlife. Happily everyone made it to the race start line on the Saturday, in the amazing amphitheatre of the Kelvingrove Bandstand. We were welcomed by local drag artiste Miss Bella Houston who gave our club a big shout out before helping lead a mass warm-up to get us all ready. We were then led by the bag piper to the start line on a beautifully rainbow-decorated Prince of Wales bridge.
Our runners came from all abilities of the club, with 2 finishers in the top 20 and others spread right throughout the field. No matter how fast you ran, the route was a green, lush, undulating beauty – and the difficult hill at 4 miles was rewarded with a drumming band at the top 🙂 One of the other fab elements of this race, apart from its route through the amazingly scenic Kelvingrove Park and Kelvin Walkway, is that it loops back on itself so team members can cheer each other on – which we certainly did!
After the run there was a charity cake sale with proceeds going to LGBT Youth Scotland (over £1000 was raised on the day via cake sales and texts). We then made our way back to our various hotels for a weekend of shopping, sleeping, drinking or, in one case, a tour of the Oor Wullie statues which had been placed throughout Scotland for the summer (https://www.oorwullie.com).
The FrontRunner love continued on Saturday evening with a group dinner at Arta restaurant, and then a free ceilidh for all visitors. The dancing started with the relatively simple Gay Gordons but got increasingly tricky, and increasingly fun! Some of the team went on later to the Polo Lounge for further dancing, while others had done quite enough for one day!
On Sunday morning we were invited to join a regular GFR Sunday run, where there were options of 5k. 7.5k, 10k and 16.5k, and we finished up with a group brunch at Bar Square in Merchant City and a group photo with Our Wullie. What a great time. Thanks GFR and see you next year!