The 2018-19 Greenock Glenpark Harriers season came to a close last week with the final race, the Bill Elder 10k. The 3 main championship titles were still up for grabs going into the race, with the standings very tight.
The senior championship was a shootout between Steven Campbell and Andy White. The season started with Chris Mooney carrying on where he left off last year, winning 2 races early on before injury stopped him in his tracks in the new year. Andy White was on a tear through the winter months, smashing PBs and picking up age category medals everywhere. This form carried over to the club races, as Andy put himself to the top of the table in the Spring. However, injury caught up with him too. The ever present Stevie Campbell took full advantage and a string of great races saw him propel himself to the top with one race to go, but Andy was back from injury and could still claim victory with a win. However, Stevie Campbell led from the off and secured not only the race win for the club, but the championship win too. He held off a great challenge from Paul Monaghan in second place. Meanwhile John Bell of Inverclyde won the overall race in an amazing time of 31.06.
Stevie Campbell also secured the V40 championship in the process. Andy’s return allowed him to take the V50 championship in his first year. Graham McGrattan had already secured the v60 category, and will face good battle to retain it next year with Danny McLaughlin now of age.
Claire Monaghan has been improving more than anyone else in the club over the last few years. This year, she ran 10 out of the 11 club races and was consistently in the top 3. This saw her sit 2 points clear going into the last race ahead of Sandra Campbell. Sandra was another one who has succumbed to injury towards the end of the season, which sadly saw her fall just shy of making it to the last race. Sue Hewitson has amassed a number of wins through the season, but having ran only 6 races she was one race shy of challenging. New club member Chloe Simpson had won all 3 club races she had entered in her debut year, and ran a cracking 10k PB in the final race to secure a narrow win from Sue. However, Claire Monaghan finished the season with another top 3 finish to take home the Woman’s Championship. Claire has been brilliant all year and thoroughly deserves her name up on the board.
In the woman’s age category championships, Claire was a clear winner in the v35 category. Lorna Coyle was able to secure the v45 and v55 titles in another consistent year from her.
The handicap championship would also be decided on the night. There were 10 runners within 10 points of the leader. Stephen Hanley went into the race with a 3 point lead, but was off sunning himself in Malta. Probably for the best considering he has some responsibility for the handicaps… Robert Dolan also had a chance of winning, just 4 points behind, but he was also absent to top up his tan ahead of next season. It was John Stevenson who took full advantage with his 6th place finish, picking up 5 points that took him to the top of the standings. His second handicap championship victory, showing that consistent running is the key. Well done John.
The handicap race was tight between two ladies who both smashed their PBs on the night. Fiona MacFarlane ran a fantastic race, and was over the moon with her PB. But it was Chloe Simpson who edged it to take home her second trophy of the night. There were also PBs for Oliver Reilly and Eric Lindsay, who both must be in contention for the best newcomer award this year.
A couple of stats to finish. We had 2 runner who ran all of the races this year. Stevie Campbell (a regular ever present) and Stephen Reid who ran them all for the first time. Claire Monaghan only missed one, and Callum Gorry was literally just one mile short of doing them all! Another great stat is that there were over 110 different harriers that ran in the senior club runners, and another 20+ juniors who ran in the mile race. A tremendous turnout. Hopefully we see you all for the first race of next year on Saturday 21st September! The final standings and the handicap results from last week are available for download below: