Har­ri­ers take part in two half marathons

Dumfries & Galloway Standard - - SPORTS -

Dum­fries Half Marathon

Nine Har­ri­ers took part in Dum­fries Run­ning Club’s an­nual half marathon on Sun­day.

The 13.1 mile road race started and fin­ished in the Crich­ton grounds near the col­lege, tak­ing a cir­cu­lar route along Bank­end Road and up past the ken­nels to Glen­caple Road be­fore re­turn­ing. It was a wet and windy day, mak­ing run­ning con­di­tions chal­leng­ing along parts of the hilly course.

Steve Head used this race as steady pre­marathon train­ing run ahead of Ber­lin Marathon in just two weeks time. He paced fel­low Har­rier Nicky Wood around the course in Nicky’s sub two-hour tar­get time with the pair fin­ish­ing the race in one hour 59 min­utes 56 sec­onds and one hour 59 min­utes 58 sec­onds re­spec­tively, with Nicky earn­ing her­self a PB over this dis­tance by over 13 min­utes.

Look­ing ahead, in ad­di­tion to Ber­lin Marathon, Steve is also rac­ing Buenos Aires Marathon and Florence Marathon be­fore the sea­son ends. Nicky now has to work hard if she to achieve an­other PB at Glas­gow Half Marathon next month af­ter a fan­tas­tic re­sult at home last week­end.

Nicky’s hus­band Chris was also amongst the Har­ri­ers tak­ing part last week­end and he was seek­ing race ex­pe­ri­ence and a PB as he tack­led the chal­leng­ing course ahead of Glas­gow Half Marathon in a few weeks. He did just this, fin­ish­ing in 50th po­si­tion with a time of one hour 40 min­utes 18 sec­onds, knock­ing over four min­utes from his pre­vi­ous PB.

Gavin Colling­wood took on his first half marathon on Sun­day with the aim of com­plet­ing the dis­tance in un­der two hours. He found the hills chal­leng­ing but was pleased with his per­for­mance and achieved his tar­get when he crossed the line in one hour 53 min­utes 29 sec­onds.

Achiev­ing the same fin­ish­ing time was Gerry Hughes who is only re­cently back to run­ning af­ter a pro­longed in­jury and us­ing the race as a train­ing run at marathon pace for the up­com­ing Nice Marathon and to pace club mates Gavin and Ja­son around the course. De­spite his ex­ten­sive marathon ex­pe­ri­ence, Gerry hasn’t raced a half marathon since the 1980s and en­joyed the event, feel­ing good af­ter­wards.

Ja­son Lit­tle ran with the pair un­til 9.5 miles when he felt good and de­cided to push on, fin­ish­ing in a time of one hour 48 min­utes 51 sec­onds achiev­ing his tar­get of com­plet­ing the race in a PB and un­der one hour 50.

Marc Scott was tack­ling his sec­ond half marathon to date and achieved a PB with a fin­ish­ing time of one hour 33 min­utes and nine sec­onds. He too looks for­ward to Glas­gow Half in the near fu­ture.

Fin­ish­ing just ahead of Marc was Wil­lie Martin, who has raced well this sea­son and put in a fan­tas­tic per­for­mance on Sun­day to win first in his age cat­e­gory with a fin­ish­ing time of one hour 32 min­utes 22 sec­onds.

Ch­ester Marathon is his next tar­get over the com­ing weeks. Marc and Wil­lie were just ahead of Keith Ainslie, who had a fin­ish­ing time of one hour 35 min­utes 37 sec­onds.

Dum­fries Har­ri­ers’ Fiona Wil­son (left) and Joanne Gor­don took part in The Great North Run

Great North Run

Tack­ling a half marathon on a larger scale the same day were Har­ri­ers Fiona Wil­son, Joanne Gor­don and Martin Gor­don. Fiona Wil­son was tack­ling her first 13.1 mile race and found the un­du­lat­ing course chal­leng­ing.

The weather was some­what kinder than in Dum­fries with some sun­shine and only a light shower to­wards the end of the race. Fiona was sim­ply aim­ing to com­plete the dis­tance, hav­ing only taken up run­ning a cou­ple of years ago she never dreamed this was pos­si­ble. She also ran the event for char­ity, rais­ing £700 for the Na­tional Autis­tic So­ci­ety who have helped her fam­ily since her youngest son was di­ag­nosed with Asperg­ers Syn­drome.

The Great North Run is very much an ex­pe­ri­ence with thou­sands of com­peti­tors (57,000 to be ac­cu­rate) tak­ing part and Fiona found that she was duck­ing in and out of those who were walk­ing but was elated when she crossed that fin­ish line in two hours 55 min­utes 28 sec­onds.

Even more ex­cit­ing for her was when, with one mile to go, she saw her hus­band, two sons and in-laws stand­ing at the side-line cheer­ing her on – this came as a lovely sur­prise as she had no idea they were com­ing to watch.

Hus­band and wife Martin and Joanne Gor­don ran the race to­gether, with Joanne tack­ling her first half marathon again with aim of sim­ply cross­ing that fin­ish line 13.1 miles from the start. She found the crowd sup­port amaz­ing and was ab­so­lutely de­lighted to achieve her goal, cross­ing the line along­side Martin in two hours 57 min­utes.

On the run

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