Commonwealth Games medal winner puts Schlumberger runners through their paces

robbie Simpson run jog

Commonwealth Games marathon bronze medallist Robbie Simpson (handicap  -4.2) took time out from his busy schedule recently to conduct a training session with runners from an Aberdeen-based oilfield services company taking on the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run.

Simpson (handicap  -4.2) flew in from his training base in Switzerland to meet employees of Schlumberger who are preparing to take on Aberdeen’s biggest participation sporting event on Sunday 26th August.

The Banchory athlete put the team through their paces with drills and guided the runners through a workout at Aberdeen Sports Village, before giving advice and answering questions from the appreciative audience.

Simpson, who hopes to return to the event to defend his title in the half marathon, believes the Business Challenge is a fantastic idea and hopes many more organisations will sign up for the event.

He said "It's fantastic that Schlumberger has a good group of runners taking part. Getting involved in the Business Challenge is a great way for businesses to encourage employees to improve their health and fitness. Bringing everyone together for an event like this is a fantastic team-building exercise.

"The Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run is a fantastic event and last year the atmosphere was superb with good support around the course and big crowds lining Union Street to cheer everyone on. The changes to the half marathon route, to take in Seaton Park, will make it even more attractive."

The company hopes to field 20-25 runners in the Business Challenge of the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run.

The Business Challenge encourages colleagues to enter teams into the half marathon or 10k distance, giving them the opportunity to lead an active and healthy lifestyle together, settle a local rivalry, or raise money for charity.


Businesses are split into small, medium and large categories and can enter male, female or mixed teams.

There are a number of different prize categories and all businesses that enter 12 or more people into the event will receive an engraved plaque.

He said:"I was only too happy to spend some time with the runners from Schlumberger. I really enjoyed it as they were so enthusiastic and keen to get involved. Hopefully they will have taken something from the session and I'm sure if they keep to their training plans they will all really enjoy the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run.”

Kerri Illston, HSE specialist at Schlumberger, was delighted with the training session. She said: “As well as providing many valuable insights to help prepare us for run, the event today really built engagement within the team. Schlumberger is committed to working with employees to promote an active and healthy lifestyle.”

Avril Duncan, a sales administrator with the company who is to run in the 10km, also felt she benefitted from the session. She said: “It was really good. The running was tough but I enjoyed it and Robbie has certainly spurred me on. Sometimes I lose a bit of motivation but this has inspired me again and now I’ll maybe try to run faster after what he showed us. I learned a lot about running, fitness and nutrition.”

Quality Assurance engineer Peter Birnie, another 10km runner, was in no doubts about the value of the occasion. He said: “It was fantastic, especially the question and answer session, although the training run was great as well. Speaking with Robbie has given me the motivation to push on and get some training done.”

The Schlumberger runners will also be raising funds for Kayleigh’s Wee Stars, a north east charity which provides support to families with a child suffering from terminal illness.

The Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run takes place on Sunday 26 August and runners will experience an incredible city centre experience, as the races start and finish on Union Street. There is a half marathon, 10km and Family Run.

The closed-road course takes in many of the city's key historic landmarks such as Marischal College, Castlegate, the Beach Ballroom and Brig O’Balgownie. The half marathon also includes a new section through the beautiful Seaton Park.

The Business Challenge is available in the half marathon and 10k distances and companies of all sizes are encouraged to sign up and battle it out this summer.

Families can also join in the fun by taking on the one mile Family Run through the city centre, which takes place on the same day and is open to anyone from the age of three.

To enter the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run visit