Its great to hear good news for a change and to find that my pal Ryan Mac Lean  has won Chris Stirling Rock Award – Inaugural Winner.  Its great to hear of a young man doing well especially a local man in an International Event like the Celtman.

It was an incredible idea to organise an Extreme Triathlon in Scotland and a few had their doubts, including myself. A few thought that to run such an event on the West Coast was bold and questions like would the infrastructure in the Torridon area cope, the tiny single track roads and where would it be held! There was also careful thoughts about the safety of all in this extreme event, the number one priority.  To have the vision of those who made this possible the  organisers now have a wonderful event with incredible support locally from so many and seen all over the world.

From the local folk  who put up with the busy roads and produce all the accommodation to the ladies who produce the wonderful meals at the end of the race it is some organisation.

The event It is all dependant to those who cover the safety of the competitors on the sea, roads and mountains. What an event we now have and a magic event to watch it grow. This year there were 37 countries represented is that not incredible and all unified in one goal in competing to the best of their abilities and I have rarely seen such lack of ego and  friendship. This is a true World class event.

I have known Ryan for may years through his family as his Dad was the Mountain Rescue Team Leader of the local Torridon and Kinlochewe MRT. He joined as a young 16 year old along with his brother Scott and at one time with his Dad there were 3 of the family on these wild hills in Rescues. He has always been a great friend who worked so hard to achieve his dreams.

One was to complete the Celtman and this incredible event is so committed to working with the local Community they supported him as did his family and friends over the years.

This is what Ryan wrote in 2012 about his time in the Torridon MRT where he is still a member. What were you doing at 16.

Ryan aged 16 on the hills with Torridon MRT.

“11 years ago this Sunday (20120 I will have been in Torridon MRT, this picture was taken high on the Liathach ridge when I joined the team at 16, lots of highs and a few lows in my time in MRT so far.I wouldn’t change it for anything had a great time an hopefully many more years to come”

Many wait years to get acknowledgement of what they do and this award is an achievement that will spur many locals on to follow in his footsteps. Ryan and Claire have a young family I am so pleased for them all and for his Mum, Dad and brothers. Its great to have good news and see young folk being acknowledged.Well done Ryan and to his family and friends for their amazing support its great what you can achieve with support and huge effort.

Alligin Photography. Wrote this they have some wonderful photos of Ryan on their Facebook page.

Chris Stirling Rock Award – Inaugural Winner – Ryan Maclean

“2019 will always be a poignant year in the memory of the Celtman Family. Though I did not know Chris I enjoyed capturing his achievements out on the course through my lens.

The same lens has captured the inaugural winner, Ryan Maclean’s Celtman journey, so may I add my congratulations and also let you know that we have added the Chris Stirling Award as a new category in the Celtman Hall of Fame that we have created at

Ryan had taken part in 4 Celtman as a competitor and if not competing has acting a support runner in the event. As a member of the Torridon Mountain Rescue team he knows the course intimately!

He certainly encapsulates the spirit of Celtman!”

Ryan Words

“Celtman has been an amazing journey for me so far and a massive part of my life. I have met some inspirational people from all over the world and become good friends with them. One of the most inspiring was Chris, he was an amazing athlete but also a good friend who gave me good solid and honest advice.

Sadly we lost Chris not so long ago and an award was made to carry his memory in this incredible race. Chris was in every ones thoughts this weekend and some amazing memories were shared about him.
Today at the awards ceremony I was called up on stage to receive the inaugural ‘Chris Stirling’ award.

A very proud moment and a massive honour to receive this special award in memory of some one very special to us all, Chris’s memory will continue to be carried through Celtman, he will always be remembered.❤️”

2019 Ryan – He did it! smashed the blue route and came 34th in the Celtman 2019 race. Strong through out and kept it going, pleasure to have ran over the big hill with him! All of his hard work paid off! Outstanding race. — with Geddes Murray at Beinn Eighe.

Great effort Ryan and such an honour for you and your family and friends.

About heavywhalley.MBE

Mountain Rescue Specialist. Environmentalist. Spent 37 years with RAF Mountain Rescue and 3 years with a civilian Team . Still an active Mountaineer when body slows, loves the wild places.
This entry was posted in Articles, Cycling, Friends, Hill running and huge days!, Mountain rescue. Bookmark the permalink.

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