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©Ian Linton

Going Runderground in Peebles

by 1
Wednesday 11th October 2017
A field of 600 runners took part in the second Tweed Valley Tunnel Trail Run in Peebles last weekend – a 20% increase on the inaugural race in 2016.
Trail running is an increasingly popular sport with many experienced road runners looking for new challenges and an alternative to urban tarmac distance races. The Tweed Valley event certainly fits the bill, taking in beautiful autumnal tracks beside the Tweed, then climbing towards some stunning hill-views before plummeting back down for an underground finale - the disused 600m Neidpath railway tunnel, which is specially lit for the occasion with lighting normally found in a concert or nightclub.

Tweed Tunnel
The stunning railway tunnel, specially lit for the run (images by Ian Linton)

The event is organised by Peebles events company Hillside Outside, who also manage TweedLove Bike Festival and the Tour O The Borders cycling events. “It’s a proper trail race, but with a twist,” says Outside’s Neil Dalgleish. “The race combines the beauty of our woodland trails and stunning hill-scapes with a surreal underground experience to finish it off. One minute you’ll see red squirrels or buzzards, the next you’ve got a disco ball lighting your way through the darkness.”

Tweed 10k
Ruth McKean and Andy Wardman on the way to victory in the 10k (images by Ian Linton)

The event featured a 10km or 20km route choice, with local athletes Ruth McKean and Andy Wardman taking top step for women and men respectively over the shorter race, while the longer version, which featured over 500m of ascent, was won by Sheena McLullich (Roslin) and Alastair Brockie (Edinburgh). 
For many, the day was all about the challenge and fun of taking part rather than competing for podiums, and the event shared the friendly, community atmosphere typical of many Tweed Valley outdoor adventure and sports events. The local community played a big role in hosting the event, with Scottish Borders Council leader Shona Haslam welcoming runners at event registration.
Organisers hope to be able to announce a date for next year’s event shortly.

Find out more information about the event here: www.tunneltrailrun.com/

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