Perfect conditions for beach race

THE second annual Balemore Beach Race, organised by North Uist AAC, took place on Monday July 25 with conditions near perfect for race night.

With the tide out, it meant the runners and walkers were greeted with firm underfoot conditions for the majority of the course, which this year had been altered slightly to mean more back and less machair for the participants.

From the gun, Alasdair Murray in his first race after competing at the Half Marathon at the Island Games took the pace on.

He was closely monitored by Iain Townsend and Sarah Johnson who also represented the Western Isles at the Isle of Wight Games in the 10,000m and 5,000m respectively.

Alasdair pushed hard up the sand dune at the one mile marker, but had Iain closely following his every move. Iain chose to wait until the last 1,000m to put an increase of pace to go past Alasdair and gain an advantage, and Iain maintained this distance until the end to win in 12 minutes and nine seconds.

Alasdair Murray was second in 12 minutes and 32 seconds, with Sarah Johnson coming in third in 13 minutes and five seconds.

The race also attracted a large group of walkers who enjoyed the good conditions and scenic course, taking in the views over to the Monach Islands, Benbecula and South Uist.

Next year the event will take place at the end of July. All proceeds go towards the Athletics team for the Island Games 2013.