The annual lung bursting mile race took place on the Esplanade last week. 107 runners came along to test themselves over a rarely ran distance. As always, the club were down on the Esplanade early to test the wind direction, and it was decided to start the runners at the west end of the splash to run towards Greenock with a good steady wind at their back.
Inverclyde’s Cameron Watson took the victory in the open race with a superb run of 4.12, the fastest we have seen in the race for a few years. Harry McGill was first Harrier home in a superb time of 4.26, taking 4th overall spot a mere 2 seconds behind experienced Inverclyder Mark Pollard. Shaun Lyon was not far behind in 4.31, beating his 2017 time by 1 second. Alan Mollins had a storming run of 4.38 to take third spot.
Steven Campbell staked his claim in the race towards this years club championship with a PB run in 4th spot. Steven is now just 1 point behind Andrew White in the standings, as Andrew had to watch from the sidelines due to a slight injury. Stephen Hanley continued his recent run of PBs in 5th place, breaking the 5 minute mark for the first time and taking 18 seconds off of his PB in 4.53.
Harris Morrison and Josh Ruddy were the final two harriers able to dip under the 5 minute mark. A great run from Harris as he is still in the U13 bracket! Josh managed to take a vital couple of seconds off of his time from last year. Neil Lafferty was robbed of sub 5 by running it right on the number, unlucky Neil!
The leading Harrier girls had a storming race right to the line. It was Katie Johnson who just pipped her friend Ava Beaton to take the title, and her first senior race victory! There was nothing between the two of them and veteran (relatively) Sue Hewitson who had a superb run to finish third. Sue puts herself right in the frame for the woman’s championship with those 8 points, it’s also going to go right down to the wire! The overall ladies race was won by Kilbarchan’s Elspeth Curran in a superb time of 4.43! A quick look at the Runbritain rankings for female miles this year, that time gets in the top 10. Inverclyde’s Nynke Mulholland was the other female under 5 mins with a great run of 4.50.
Katie Johnson becomes the second female junior member to win a senior race this season, and the other one was Ruby McGill and it was she who managed to be the only other Harrier female to dip under 6 minutes. Claire Monaghan was able to pick up some more points in the race for the championship with a great run in 6.18 with Cheryl Thomas not far behind in 6.22, both great runs. It was however the juniors who were dominant with other fast runs from Abbie Tosh, Summer Taggart, Francesca McKay and Erin McEleny. It should be noted that Erin was able to easily beat her Mum by almost 30 seconds!
There were some great runs by other junior boys who were showing their senior counterparts how it is done. Jude Dolan, Ben Campbell and Shaun Wiseman all in the low 5 minutes mark. Further up the field there were great runs from Euan Johnson and Cameron Crawford. Some of the senior who are new to the mile race found out the hard way that you need to get off to a good start! Oliver Reilly and Owen Atkinson ran great times but could have been closer to that elusive 5 minute mark if they had been braver on the start line! Oliver’s time has to be commended just 2 days after Edinburgh Marathon.
The turnout of runners was eclipsed by the fantastic turnout of supporters and volunteers. A big thanks to all of the volunteers who made the event run so smoothly. Especially to Stevie McLoone who got everyone to know their role and put them in their correct positions, from timekeepers to tape holders, they all played their part! Thanks also to our race sponsor Inverclyde Leisure. It’s a great sight seeing the mass of runners fly down the Esplanade once a year, look forward to next year already!
Results (Harriers in bold): Cameron Watson 4:12, Finlay Murray 4:17, Mark Pollard 4:24, Harry McGill 4:26, Shaun Lyon 4:31, Alan Mollins 4:38, Stuart Kerr 4:38, Peter Tucker 4:40, John Hammerman 4:42, Elspeth Curran 4:43, Steven Campbell 4:45, Nynke Mulholland 4:50, Stephen Hanley 4:53, Dylan Crawford 4:56, Jason Kane 4:56, Harris Morrison 4:57, Joshua Ruddy 4:58, Colin Morrison 4:59, Neil Lafferty 5:00, Robert Wilson 5:03, Jude Dolan 5:04, Graeme Gemmell 5:06, Stuart Hodge 5:06, Owen Atkinson 5:12, Oliver Reilly 5:12, Robert Grey Jnr 5:13, Chloe Simpson 5:13, Ben Campbell 5:19, Chris Watson 5:21, Shaun Wiseman 5:25, David Roberts 5:2, David Docherty 5:29, George McCallum 5:35, Gavin Morrison 5:36, Michael Finley 5:38, Katie Johnson 5:39, Ava Beaton 5:40, Sue Hewitson 5:41, Stewart Anderson 5:42, Graham McGrattan 5:43, Gordon Ritchie 5:47, Robert Grey Snr 5:48, Douglas Campbell 5:49, Shona Doherty 5:49, Euan Johnson 5:51, Stephen Reid 5:52, Richard Newsome 5:55, Ian McKee 5:57, Ruby McGill 5:59, Leo Beaton 6:02, Micky Dunn 6:04, Steven Smith 6:06, Alan O’Rourke 6:07, Sean McFarlane 6:09, Robin McAuslan 6:10, Alan Munro 6:12, Jason McInally 6:12, Cameron Beck 6:13, Cameron Crawford 6:14, Abbie Tosh 6:15, Connor McCrorey 6:15, Claire Monaghan 6:18, Summer Taggart 6:21, Francesca McKay 6:22, Cheryl Thomas 6:22, Eleanor Connelly 6:23, Erin McEleny 6:26, Emma Aitken 6:26, Leah Knox 6:27, Sophie Campbell 6:29, Jack Singleton 6:32, Eric Lindsay 6:34, Michael Connelly 6:36, Maria McCabe 6:40, Donna Campbell 6:41, Nathan Adams 6:47, Lynsey Mooney 6:48, James Campbell 6:50, Ruari Trainer 6:51, Alex Patterson 6:52, Marianne McKay 6:53, Neil Thompson 6:53, Fiona McFarlane 6:54, David Benstead 7:01, Boyd McKenzie 7:03, Debbie McKenzie 7:07, Olivia Trainer 7:09, David Gemmell 7:14, Grant Munro 7:17, Heather Lafferty 7:17, Alex Wiseman 7:19, Sarah Jane Whalen 7:26, Nathan McCorkindale 7:29, Angela Nelson 7:33, Aimee McEleny 7:35, Elaine Medinelli 7:41, Beth Doherty 7:56, Stella McCabe 8:00, Jack Campbell 8:02, Sandra Devine 8:08, Isly Newsome 8:09, Kurt McGill 8:11, Abbigael Crawford 8:23, Matthew Ross 8:33, Charlotte McKay 8:38, Finlay McKeegan 8:42, Newton Robertson 8:57