ATHLETES are being invited to sign up to a central part of the annual Neilston Show this spring.

The 2020 Neilston PadRace has officially opened for entries ahead of the event set for the first Saturday in May.

This 4.5-mile race starts at the show field on Uplawmoor Road at 10am and circles the Neilston Pad above the village.

Organisers said it has a “little bit of everything”, including forest trails and tracks, a decent hill climb, a short linking section on public roads, and of course the infamous mud. 

Last year saw 50 runners take part, ranging in age from 16 to 70+ from across East Renfrewshire and beyond, an increase from the previous year when the race was ressurected after a year absence. The PadRace dates back at least 30 years and they hope to increase interest in the roughly 7.5km route even more in 2020.

Micky Anderson, PadRace organiser with the Neilston Agricultural Society, said: “It’s challenging but manageable, and ideal for those aged 16 or over that are looking for something a little harder than a parkrun.”

Trophies are handed out to fastest male, female and under-21, as well as fastest veteran runners. All the runners, whether competitive or just for fun, received a race rosette for taking on the course across Scotland’s sixth highest village.

Online entry is now open via the website Race entrants also get free entry to Neilston Show - perfect for making a family day out of the event.

The Neilston Show began life in the early 19th century as a result of a dispute between two farmers from the village over who had the best prized bull. 

Show day falls annually on the first Saturday in May and is one of the earliest shows in the farming calendar. In recent years, the show has been held at Holehouse and is a fun day out for all the family.