The Press and Journal (Inverness, Highlands, and Islands)
Roche aims for good time in debut marathon
North-east runner Tom Roche is hoping for a good performance on Sunday when making his marathon debut in the Scottish championships at Stirling.
The Oldmeldrum-based competitor, who represents Garioch Gazelles, has been focusing on this race over the winter and is ready to give it his best shot.
The 2017 Dyce half marathon champion has put together some decent performances on the local circuit since the beginning of the year.
He took two minutes off his previous best half marathon time in February’s Kinloss to Lossiemouth race where he clocked 1hr 13min 54sec when finishing second behind Deeside’s Commonwealth Games marathon bronze medallist Robbie Simpson.
Roche then finished
“My training has been excellent. I’ve no aches and pains and I feel great”
second behind GB trail running international Kyle Greig (Metro Aberdeen) in last month’s Run Garioch half marathon where he ran slower, but on a tougher course.
He said: “My training has been excellent. I’ve no aches and pains and I feel great. I’m not sure what to expect but a couple of guys who are around my level in other races did just under 2hr 40min at London, so I’d hope to do at least match that especially as it will be much cooler at Stirling.
“As it’s the Scottish championship I’ll also be keeping an eye on other runners in my age group.”
The inaugural Stirling race had 6,500 runners last year and a similar turnout is expected this weekend.
Scottish Olympic Games steeplechaser Andrew Lemoncello (Fife AC) and Lesley Pirie (VP Glasgow), last year’s men’s and women’s champions, are not defending their titles.
A half marathon has also been added to the programme but this doesn’t carry championship status.