BAM… “below average mentality” … “head-case” … “an Aberdonian abusive term for non-educated delinquent“…. You get the idea. I think Scottish ultra legend and world record three-legged champion Rab Lee came up with the suggestion as the initials also tied up with Bill and Mike not to mention the whole ethos of ultra running and so it just kind of stuck.
As to the main pair of BAMs, we narrowly avoided meeting whilst both taking part in the 2008 Devil o’ the Highlands footrace from Tyndrum to Fort William. Up until that point we’d only known each other thanks to an online desert running forum as we were both training for desert races in 2009. Despite finishing the Devil within minutes of each other and then organising to meet up in a pub for drinks, we were like drunken, disorganised ships that pass in the night.
At some point over the next couple of years we finally did meet up and at some point decided that organising races would be a good idea and it was then that Bill suggested we stage a 24 hour race somewhere in Scotland. It came close to being based on a track near Perth, but when that idea proved to be stupidly expensive, we moved it to a forest in the Scottish Highlands and it became the Glenmore 24. In September 2011, a whole 27 runners took part in the inaugural race which saw Dutchman Jeroen Renes storm to the title with 124 miles.
Shortly after that, the Glen Ogle 33 was born… The thinking behind this one was to put on a cheap & cheerful end of season get-together and we thought we’d be lucky to get 50 runners in year one due to the fact it was a new race taking place in November. As the 50 mark came and went, we started to think we might even get 70 runners if lucky, but when we hit the 100 entrants, we realised we might have to re-think the course and start/finish arrangements. We ended up with 130 runners on the start line and its now one of the most popular ultras in Scotland.
Since then we’ve expanded the race calendar to include the Great Glen Ultra from Fort William to Inverness and in 2016 are planning to add another race at Glen Lyon.
We’ve got more race ideas than there are spare dates in the calendar or hours in the day to organise, but with all our events we just want to put on the best race we can. We welcome feedback from all runners in our events and we use this to try and improve each race year on year, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch with any comments about the races.
Meet the team……
Bill… aka Bilbo
When not organising races, making dramatic mid-race exits via helicopter or designing groundbreaking sports clothing, Bill likes to run the odd ultra himself having completed the multi-day Gobi Desert Challenge, the Brecon Beacons Ultra more times than he can remember and pretty much every Scottish Ultra you care to mention including the West Highland Way. And Chamonix has never been the same since he rocked up in 2014.
Mike… aka Mr Mike
Strangely enough also did a desert race in 2009 but was the Marathon des Sables & not the Gobi. Has also done the Brecon Beacons a few times, once in matching kilts with Bill at a leisurely pace which also involved having a picnic of pork pies and Irn Bru at the high-point of the course. Attempted the West Highland Way in 2010 when nowhere near ready and soon realised the error of his ways but has since finished it twice and a few other Scottish Ultras along the way.
Cat…aka Mrs Mike….aka Office Monkey
Mother of Two…wife, cook, cleaner, taxi driver, homework enforcer, shop keep, race planner, logistics, lorry driver, accountant, purchasing, posting, tidy-upper, dog walker, horse rider…should I go on???
Apparently keeps the other pair “of eejits” in check…. “Speak to me if you actually want stuff done“.