As if running 10km was not enough, strong winds and sideways rain seem to be a recurring theme over the previous years. This year was no exception, and with record numbers entered the 10k, and even more entered the half marathon (13.1 miles), the stage was set for another tough day.
- 265 runners on the start line
- Kids races on the beach
- Local residents in all events
- Lots of new faces as well as returning runners
Everyone set off together along Sorobaidh Beach, heading towards Hynish. An early sprint opened up a gap with a strong lead group including runners from Portobello and our own PE teacher Andy Rossiter. On the run back from Hynish the main bunch split up, with the Half Marathon runners going up and around through Sandaig, and the 10k runners going back round to the beach finish.
The under 16’s meanwhile ran their races, with 1km and 2km events and podium presentations to finish. It’s great to see all ages included, and even pram pushers taking part in the day.
In the 10k event, once back to the beach, it was Mr Rossiter who had made the break, establishing a lead with nobody else in sight. With a final sprint to the line he took the overall win, and was the only runner to go under 40mins (39:32). It’s taken 10 years, but it’s the first local resident to win the event, and a very worthy winner indeed – “Really enjoyable day and night. Great effort by all involved, especially those doing their first 1/2 marathon against that headwind!”
Back on the course, the half marathon was indeed battling against a headwind, having turned up the track at Kilkenneth towards Moss, and heading back through Heylipol it was against the wind the whole way.
“At nine miles turning into the wind it was going to be my first and last half marathon! But once finished, i forgot the pain, and am now looking forward to the ultra marathon in September!” – Jo Vale
“It was a really tough run for me, the longest I’ve ever done before, but all the cheery waves, tambourine shakes and pans being beaten encouraged me to keep going and complete the course!” – Ishbel Campbell
Ishbel and Jo both completed the Half Marathon, a fantastic achievement, and a great result for all the training they put in. Both runners are set to do the Ultra Marathon in September!
Meanwhile, the 10k finishers kept coming, with a top 20 finish from Sarah Holliday, and Stewart MacLennan as a last minute entry finishing high up. But everyone who finished should be pleased with their achievement, it was a tough day, and having so many people out on the course spurred all the runners on. In that sense, it was a team effort, and everyone played a part.
But the day was not yet done. The dance is now established a night not to miss. Oban band, Crackin’ Craic were on amazing form, and gave a fresh sound and an appropriate finish to the 10th year of the event. A raffle was held, and raised £600 to be given to Oban Mountain Rescue, with many runners commenting how this cause had been on their minds during the run, and had inspired them to keep going.
Special thanks to all the volunteers and helpers on the day. It was hard work this year, and yet everyone who contributed made the event a success, and created a wonderful atmosphere to enjoy being active on Tiree. Each year I receive lots of feedback about how supportive and friendly the volunteers are, and it’s that which makes the event special, so thank you for all the ways people helped at the event.
Next up – we’ve got a Trail Running Training Camp in June, open to local residents and visitors, and then it’s the Ultra Marathon in September. More details at www.tireefitness.co.uk
Any comments, feedback, concerns or suggestions about any of these events please contact Will on 421 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and all finish times can be found on the website.