New challenge for historic Hill Race

Braemar Castle has created a new challenge for Scotland’s oldest hill race.

Thursday, 20th May 2021, 12:00 am
Braemar Castle is putting on a massive challenge to the public

Covid has generated uncertainty around the Creag Choinnich Race which sets off annually from the Castle on the longest day.

This year, a different test has been set for the race which dates back almost a thousand years.

Participants are invited to run up nearby Creag Choinnich 10 times during the month of June or, if they’re unable to tackle the hill, to run, walk, cycle the equivalent distance of 4km, with the optional ascent of 250m, to fulfil the challenge of one month, 4 km, 10 times.

Participants are invited to run up nearby Creag Choinnich 10 times during the month of June.

The first of the 10 runs will be cheered off from the Castle at 7pm on June 1.

Participants and sponsors are invited to contribute to Braemar Castle’s fundraising appeal, “Raising the Standard” which will see the community-operated Castle reharled and refreshed, creating learning opportunities and bringing new audiences to the Castle and the village.

The project, supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic Environment Scotland is working towards a fundraising target of £1.6 million.

Braemar Castle’s Community Fundraising Officer, Catriona Skene said: “Tradition has it that it was Scottish King, Malcolm Canmore, who first set up the Creag Choinnich contest in 1064 to find the fastest man to deliver his despatches.

"The challenge for the Braemar community, who operate the Castle as a visitor attraction, may be different, but we also have a bit of a mountain to climb to raise the necessary funding for the Castle restoration.

“We wanted to put together a challenge for the runners who were gearing up for the race, and also to involve any walkers and cyclists who’d like to join in.

"But we also wanted to make it relevant to the Castle’s history.

"We’re looking forward to welcoming as many people as possible to get involved in the challenge and to help us exceed our target of £1,000.

“As an added incentive the participant who raises the greatest amount will win a meal for 2 in the “Flying Stag” at the 5 star boutique hotel, the Fife Arms, in Braemar.”

A JustGiving page has been set up for the Creag Choinnich Challenge at