The Autoparts Stornoway half marathon got this season’s popular Hebridean 3 Race challenge under way at Stornoway Harbour’s Lazy Corner recently.
At 10am the one hundred and twenty starters assembled and were ready to go.
Organiser Tony Robson addressed the runners before the start and time was taken to pause and remember those islanders involved in the recent Manchester atrocities, before Autopart’s Tom MacIver blew the starter’s horn.
From the start there was a bit of over exuberant speed applied by some SRAC juniors taking part as relay runners (not an official part of the event) and the early race leader also in SRAC’s red and gold, Florent Schaal.
Florent continued a very high tempo pace through the town section of the course and at one point had opened up a two minute lead. However the big effort to try and match last year’s winning time took its toll and he was pulled back by the chasing pack.
The Edinburgh threesome of, Keith Hood, Ewan Crawford and Scott Craighead of Corstorphine AAC, Hunters Bog Trotters and Carnethy Hill Racing Club respectively overtook the talented young Frenchman.
As the runners reached Lews Castle at about 8.5 miles the HBT athlete Ewan Crawford made a decisive break for the lead ahead of Hood and Craighead.
The heat of the day seemed to be taking affect on the front runners as the pace dropped significantly, even with the shade in the castle grounds, offering some respite.
However the HBT runner worked steadily through the undulating trails and coming into the home straight to the finish line at Lazy Corner he had opened up a winning gap of just over two minutes.
His time of one hour 18, 22 meant that HBT had yet another winner of the Stornoway Half marathon, to add to such runners as Adam Eyre-Walker (event record holder), Stuart Gibson, Robin Thomas and Simon Axon to name a few! Stornoway are indebted to the club for such support over the years!
In the women’s race regular visitor Gillian Carr of Corstorphine AAC took the women’s title just under a minute ahead of Achilies Heel athlete Rachel Dance. The third place was taken by Swedish visitor Lina Karlsson.
The longevity of the older runners and the level of their performances was very noticeable with nine men in the top thirteen either vet 40, 50 or 60 category.
Donald Smith (V60) of West Side Runners time of 1:25:51 resulted in sixth place and also gave him a top 10 national time for the season over Half Marathon.
Also dipping under the 1 hour 30minutes mark was another V60 local runner, Alastair Dunlop.
Dunlop 9th, Murdo MacKenzie 8th and Florent Schaal, 5th, secured the team title for the home team. In the 10k there were wins for SRAC’s junior Kyle Munro (junior) and Marina Murray.
1st, Ewan Crawford HBT 1:18:22. 2nd Keith Hood Corstorphine AAC 1:20:35. 3rd Scott Craighead Carnethy 1:22:46.
Vet V40 Dean Carr Corstorphine. V50 Iain Shaw Ferranti AC. V60 Donald Smith West Side Runners
1st Gillian Carr Corstorhpine AAC1:30:32. 2nd Rachel Dance Achilles Heel 1: 38:20. 3rd .Lina Karlsson Sweeden
Vet V35 1st Merisa Pitt Haywards Heath Harriers 1: 42:12. V45 Maureen Mackie Nairn RR 1:44:14 V55 Maureen MacLeod Glasgow 1:52:15
10K RESULTS 1st Klye Munro SRAC 39:05 2nd Angus Morrison 45:25 3rd Martin MacLeod 45:26
1st Marina Murray SRAC 45:38 2nd Joanna Gillies 3rd Jane MacInnes 53:28
SRAC would like to express their thanks to race sponsors Autoparts Stornoway, the many marshals, timekeepers, volunteers, Police and St Andrews First Aid that gave up their time. Stornoway Trust, Stornoway Port Authority and Melbost Farm for permissions to use their properties to stage the races.