Race Reports

Kirroughtree Hillbilly Duathlon 2014

May 18, 2014

Andy takes his first win of the season at a great race at the amazing Kirroughtree 7stanes trail centre. 

Results and Hillbilly Website

I started the run at a reasonable pace trying hard to hang on to the fast Jim Haworth as we ascended the woodland trails of the Galloway forest. I couldn’t keep with the strong pace of the leader and I started to drop back, leaving me to suffer on my own with some left hamstring pain from a recent fell race. I remember thinking back to last week’s F1-grandprix at this point in the run, as I felt a bit like Lewis Hamilton trying to conserve tyre wear as I desperately tried to rest my left leg on the difficult bits and corners. Before arriving in to transition there were a couple of steep ‘stings in the tail’ hills to really make sure you were thoroughly cooked before moving on to the bike section.

Kirroughtree Mens solo Podium

I had a good transition helped by the consistently brilliant marshaling (who held my bike for me), and went out in 2nd place about 2 minutes back on the solo leader. I really love this trail and the pains soon disappeared as the adrenaline rush hit on the first downhill! I soon got caught by a speedy rider doing the team event, and had a bit of fun trying to hold his wheel for a while down the flowing singletrack. The final descent is the stuff of legends in British mountain bike trails and I was loving it until a puncture about 1 km to the finish. I didn’t even think about stopping (mostly cos I didn’t take a pump!) and bumped my way around the last few corners to take the solo win.

The event was really top class from the organisation, to the courses, to the crowd. A great day topped off by the prize giving of a really nice handmade shield which will be engraved and kept at the visitors centre for subsequent years.

Massive thanks to The Bike Tree in Sheffield for their support.

Even got an interview for BBC Scotland! haha

Even got an interview for BBC Scotland! haha

Kielder Duathlon

Dec 02, 2013

Drink. Sleep. Run. Bike. Run. Sleep.


On Sunday Round 2 of the High Terrain Events duathlon series took place at Kielder Castle, Northumberland.

At Round One I was lucky enough to win some lovely prizes including a 36 pint Keg from Ennerdale Brewery. Four friends and myself decided in our wisdom, that the best day to drink the keg was the Friday night before the event…

Oh. Dear.

Lets just say that my rice n pasta carb-loading probably wasn’t going to be of much use, given that I’d just puked it all back up!

So, not the best preparation, but my hangover eventually lifted by the Sunday morning, and I was ready to see if my body would still function.

Run 1–> A more laid back starting pace this time as we gradually wound our way up the fire-roads that encircle the emotively named deadwater fell. Everything was so serene until we jumped over the stile and attempted to run down the really technical open fell-side. People were falling, disappearing down holes, twisting ankles, and shouting out all over the place. I managed to keep upright and came out at the bottom in joint 1st place as we ran back towards the transition area.


Bike –> I gained a few valuable seconds at transition and the two of us headed out together. We competed with each other for the lead up the first climb and I managed to just hit the singletrack in front. I thought now was the time for a big effort to try and get away. I managed to keep extending the lead throughout the adapted ‘blue’ course.

There was some awesome autumnal riding through the gorgeous forest and moorland with some great little features- small kickers, berms, and some flat, fast meandering corners.

Run 2–>This should have been fairly uneventful with a good lead, but I managed to miss a signpost and get lost! Surely my vision was blinded by the low sun?! I’m used to getting lost at races as my MTBO mates will know, but this was without a map! I desperately asked some poor walkers if they’d seen any race arrows, but they didn’t seem to understand my garbled, exhausted, beer-brained nonsense; so I ran back a little way to find my missed marker. Pretty soon we were back at the Castle after traversing a short distance through some sumptuous open woodland.



High terrain Events really deliver at these events; so well organised, and really fun courses!

Thanks again to The Bike Treefor their continued support. Everyone should check out their new shiny website Here!

Many thanks to SportSunday for their great photographs and support out on the course.  Be sure to check out their site too.. even if you didn’t race!

Whinlatter Duathlon

Nov 11, 2013

Rider: Andy Douglas

Duathlon? I do

Whinlatter SS

Photo with thanks to SportSunday

Results, Photos, The Bike Tree

On Sunday I took part in the Whinlatter Duathlon; the first event of the series run by the brilliant High Terrain Events. This year the event was part of the World Off-road Duathlon Series, with a Spanish team ‘Team Mindundi’ flying over to compete.

At the start of the year, at my first attempt of an off-road duathlon (Grizedale), I was overtaken on the second run by Tom Gibbs coming 2nd-place by about 20 seconds, reflecting my lack of running fitness. This year I was a little more prepared, having done about 4 runs recently, and even some ‘block training’ where you practice changing between run-bike a few times during the workout (the neighbours thought I was going mad!)

The weather in the UK has been great recently; if you are a fan of cold, wind, and loads of rain, but for Sunday it all changed and we had wall-to-wall sunshine and snow above 400m. The course was therefore covered in ice, making it really difficult especially on the bike, with the only sections spared tending to be on the tops of berms, and the well draining sections.

Bonfire and whinlatter 2013 027 RUN 1> Off we went, pretty fast paced, I initially held onto about 6th place, with Chris Steele storming off into the distance as a lone leader. The run was much more demanding than I’d been expecting. There was a lot of climbing, some of it on very marshy, muddy steep tracks through the forest. I was trying to keep a good position but not use too much energy in doing so, because I knew I could put more effort in on the bike. Run routes

By the end of the first run I was well positioned in 4th place, but I knew there was a long way to go and the next 18 km off-road biking followed by another equally hard 6 km was feeling like the least enticing thing I could imagine.

Bonfire and whinlatter 2013 039A quick change onto the BIKE and I headed out into the ice fields of the blue Altura trail, almost crashing on the first corner, not realizing quite how icy it was in the center of the track. With the ice, you had to really concentrate on every rock and root to make sure you didn’t lose a wheel out of the corner. I slowly caught the few riders ahead with just Chris still ahead. A marshal whispered ’20 seconds ahead’ and around the next bend I could see the leader. We cycled together for a moment but I knew I had to gain a healthy advantage over the rest of the field if there was any chance of holding onto it to the finish, I wasn’t keen on a repeat of last year where I was overtaken practically in sight of the finish line.

RUN 2> ‘I’m knackered’ I thought as I set off on the second run. My legs didn’t seem to cramp too often though and I managed to find my feet and gave it all I could to the summit of Seat Howe. After a punishingly steep climb up the snowy forest climb the view at the top was amazing, savored only for a second before letting my legs go and rolling down to the finish, looking over my shoulder as I went!Bonfire and whinlatter 2013 043

I was so happy and relieved to hold on to the win. This event really is painful and I needed a long sit down before being able to move at the finish! I think its pretty tough for anyone competing and was amazing to see some of the achievements, with competitors still coming in over the line after 4 hours of hard running.

Bonfire and whinlatter 2013 057




To top the day off (as well as Man United beating Arsenal) was the prizes of an awesome Salomon bag, a lovely framed photo, AND A KEG OF ENNERDALE BLONDE ALE!! Woohoo!

See ya at the next one, if I’m not a raging alcoholic by then!

Many thanks to High Terrain Events for a well organised fun race, to SportSunday for their great winners photo and to the lovely people at the The Bike Tree for their continued support, cheers guys!

The Bike Tree

World MTBO Championships

Aug 30, 2013

24th place in the Sprint Distance MTBO World Championships

Andy has spent the last week in Estonia racing for team GB in the World Mountain bike orienteering championships. Fellow Brits include Ian Nixon in men elite, Emily Benham in women’s elite, and Edwyn Oliver-Evans in junior.

20130903-134430.jpgThe terrain area varied between maps. The sprint distance began in a tricky open area of intricate small paths, before heading into the urban area of the town of Tapa making use of its many small streets, parks and back alleys. Sprint map




The middle distance area was a relatively small area of dense forest packed with short, steep hills containing a maze of different size tracks from ATV tracks to MTB singletrack. The elite map took riders around 24 checkpoints which criss-crossed their way around the 30cm 1:10 000 map. Middle map

The long distance event was in a large area of alternating hills and marshes, with plenty of the now familiar XC-Ski trails, which tend to zig-zag their way up and down the hills counter-intuitively. Long map









Andy has placed well up the field at 24th place in the sprint distance, making it one of the best positions for GB elite men in recent years. A disappointing 56th place in middle distance on Tuesday could have been much better if Andy hadn’t made a five minute error following a wrong control-line from control 12 to 20!

Great Britain took 14th nation in the Relay. A good result for GB but they showed hints of a faster, more accomplished team. Relay map

Andy was again a little disappointed in 50th in the Long final, as it is his favored distance. A grand total of 5 fairly moderate errors lost almost 20 minutes in total over the couple of hours riding.

All in all a great week, with an excellent position for Andy in the sprint, and plenty of extra experience at this elite level of MTBO

See BMBO for team GB blog. WMTBOC 2013



VeloUK.net race report

Jul 03, 2013

first place!

A race report and updated league standings have been published via velouk.net


sprint finish!