Thompson tears up script in Glasgow triumph
Englishman’s clear-cut win ahead of home hope
Chris Thompson obviously hadn’t read the script when racing to a clear-cut victory in the Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run half marathon held through the streets of Glasgow yesterday.
Scottish marathon hero Callum Hawkins (Kilbarchan AAC), who won last year, was the hot tip to retain his title in front of an adoring home crowd, but it wasn’t to be.
England’s Thompson seized the initiative, made an early break, and neither Hawkins nor anyone else in the huge field was able to respond.
The Aldershot Farnham and District club member powered on to take first place in 1.02.44 while Hawkins had to dig deep into his reserves to snatch second place and the Scottish title from fellow Rio Olympian Tsegai Tewelde (Shettleston Harriers), both men sharing the same time of 1.03.18. Thompson said: “There were some cheeky comments from the sidelines at times as the locals tried telling me Callum was closer behind than he really was.
“I was determined not to look, but eventually I gave in and did, then realised he wasn’t right behind me, although he was never too far away. The banter was good though.
“It was an interesting position to be in, leading an athlete who finished fourth in the world championships. He is such a good athlete and you know you can’t show any weakness when you are ahead or he’ll chew you up.
“I am just delighted to have had such a good day as it doesn’t always happen for me now.”
Hawkins was disappointed but not too downhearted by the outcome. He said: “It was tough. I was hoping Chris had gone off too hard and he’d come back to me later in the race.
“I was pushing hard to catch him but it wasn’t happening.
I’ve been struggling recently in training although I felt I was better than I showed today, but obviously not.
“Then it became a battle between me and Tsegai for second place. I don’t usually like to leave it so late in a sprint finish but there was no option today.
“I’m now going to get down to preparing for the Commonwealth Games next year.”
Welshman Kristian Jones, winner of the previous weekend’s River Ness 10km, was fourth in 1.06.11.
Kenny Wilson, Moray Road Runners, slashed 62sec off his previous best time when finishing seventh in 1.07.37.
The result made up for his disappointment last year when he was denied a fast time after the course was found to be short.
Wilson, winner of the Great Aberdeen Run 10km in August, was delighted with his performance.
He said: “I tried to stay with Kristian for as long as I could and that lasted for five miles.After that I was able to work with two Shettleston runners but I had a bad patch at 11 miles when I got a stitch, so it was tough from there on.
“I am pleased with my time. I would have been happy with anything under 1.08, so it’s absolutely. It’s also good to get into the top 10 at an event like this.”
Aberdeen AAC’s James Hoad secured a personal best 1.08.38 in 12th position.
Olympic 5,000m runner Andy Butchart (Central AC), making his debut over the distance, was 14th in 1.10.03.
Kenyan Isaiah Kosgei, who was fourth in the previous weekend’s Loch Ness marathon and is temporarily based in Aberdeen, finished 16th in 1.10.08.
Gordon Lennox (Inverness Harriers) was 29th in 1.13.10.
Kenya’s Florence Dan-