Monday, August 8, 2016
Seven hardy Harriers braved storm force winds on Sunday to make a day-trip to Mull for the annual half-marathon from Craignure to Salen. Conditions were deceptively benign on landing at the ferry terminal at Craignure, but wind gusts in excess of 40mph in the wrong direction soon put paid to any ideas of fast times.
First Harrier home was Phil T, in 14th position (3rd in the MV50 category), in a time of 1.40.09, followed by Tony in 15th position (4th MV50) in a time of 1.41.54. For the women, Nic was first home in 8th position in the women’s race in a time of 1.51.12. Nic also won a handsome trophy and collection of local Mull produce as her prize as first FV40 runner. Next in was Julia in 12th position in the women’s race in 1.56.21, with Lauren just missing her 2-hour target by a mere 45 seconds. On any other day with better conditions, Lauren’s time would have been comfortably within her target.
And beating his prediction that he’d be last in the entire race was Colin, finishing in a fine 2.19.43, with a dozen runners trailing in his wake behind him. Unfortunately, there was no separate category for MV70 runners, but Colin remains an inspiration to the rest of the club with his determination and good humour.
Unfortunately, Andy Aitken’s Hebridean half-marathon adventures appear to have come to a temporary halt as he had to withdraw from the race at half-distance with a calf injury. However, Andy was still able to particpate in post-run fish'n'chips at the Real Food Cafe on the way home.
The race was also notable for the performance of Kate Williamson of Eynsham Road Runers, British Women's V70 champion over most distances, including the marathon (she broke the age-group record at the London Marathon in 2016 with a time of 3.42.42). Kate's time in the Mull half was an impressive 1.49.01.