The Gleneagles Grouse Race
On the Glorious Twelfth, shooting guests of Gleneagles Hotel took part in the annual tradition of the Great Grouse Race, which aims to deliver freshly-shot red grouse to top restaurants in London on the first day of the UK game shooting season.
(PHOTOGRAPHY: CHARLIE SAINSBURY-PLAICE)
The team of 10 very lucky Guns – including Olympic Trap gold medalist Peter Wilson MBE, Fieldsports editor Marcus Janssen, Daryl Greatrex, Rachel Carrie, Mark Winser and Corry Cavell-Taylor – harvested a total bag of 36-brace after a morning of walked-up shooting on the spectacular moors surrounding the hotel in Perthshire.
Each of the Guns were allocated a Holland & Holland shotgun, Nobel Sport Italia cartridges and specially kitted out in Schöffel clothing, Smith Optics safety glasses and Howard Leight ear defenders, and were driven to and from the moor in Bentley Bentayga SUVs.
After an incredible sit-down lunch of finest Scotch beef, lobsters and smoked salmon, the bag was divided between the Gleneagles’ fine dining restaurants and a team that raced 450 miles south via helicopter in six hours to deliver the birds to The Harwood Arms in Fulham, London – stopping only at Cumbrian Game in Carlisle who prepared the birds – ready for supper at 7pm.
“This was an incredibly special event,” commented Marcus Janssen. “To shoot grouse on the Glorious Twelfth is a great privilege for any keen game Shot. But to do so as part of such a fabulous event, with such lovely people, was indeed extra special. I can’t begin to imagine how much hard work, co-ordination and planning went into making such an experience possible. Everything was flawless, and what’s more, we were fully kitted out with the latest Schöffel shooting kit, we had the use of a range of superb Holland & Holland shotguns, and we travelled to and from the moor in the ultimate comfort of Bentley Bentayga SUVs. I had to pinch myself on several occasions – I will remember it for a very long time."
Gleneagles’ hotel manager Conor O’Leary said: “We’re delighted to be bringing back this great British tradition, which celebrates our history and heritage in both fieldsports and culinary excellence.
“We’re committed to using the freshest seasonal ingredients across our restaurants and are lucky that the Perthshire countryside offers us the pick of wood, river and field.”
The grouse served at The Harwood Arms were baked in hay and plated with beetroot, blackberry and juniper.
About Gleneagles Hotel…
Bought by Ennismore in 2015, the luxury 5-star hotel has undergone a multi-million pound refurbishment and now wishes to elevate the profile of its on-site fieldsports offering, which includes quality game shooting, deerstalking, fishing, gundog training and more.
Walked-up grouse over pointers at Gleneagles – from £1,515 per room
– Grouse shooting over pointers with 2–3 brace per Gun in a day
– Two-night stay in a Classic Room (single occupancy)
– Full Scottish breakfast each morning
– Use of The Health Club facilities
For more information, visit www.gleneagles.com