Reigning Skye and Lochalsh women’s winter race series champion Sarah Attwood strengthened her claim for the 2021-22 title when she set a new course record at the Glenmore 10k near Portree on Saturday.
Crossing the finishing line in 40 minutes and 34 seconds Attwood finished as the fastest woman – and the runner-up overall – for the third race out of four this season to open a gap on her nearest challenger Rhianna Kirk who completed the course in 43:54 to take the women’s runner up spot.
Mark MacDonald once again took the top spot overall in an impressive time of 35:47 as he reclaimed the lead at the top of the men’s standings from Chris James. MacDonald’s victory was also his third this season.
Indeed, both MacDonald and Attwood have finished first in all the races they have competed in this season, with the pair having missed the Braes meet in December due to other race commitments.
Chris James, who took advantage of MacDonald and Attwood’s absence to secure victory at that race, acquitted himself well once more with a third-place finish overall as he took the men’s runner-up spot.
Hugh Standen (42:48) and Ian Silvester (43:11) finished fourth and fifth place, respectively, overall.
Rhianna Kirk, whose fine season continued, took sixth place overall before Niall Till (44:43) and Niall Stewart (46:37) crossed the line in seventh and eighth, respectively.
Braes women’s runner-up Eilidh Towers came home in 48:24 to repeat that feat and earn ninth place overall, while Richard Stridgeon went one better than his previous run by breaking into the top 10 in 48:30.
Angela’ Roberts’s time of 50:32 secured her an 11th overall and a place in the women’s top three on the day.
Commenting on her record-breaking run Sarah Attwood told the Free Press: “It was a great day. It was so lovely to see everyone, the support was brilliant.
“The weather gods blessed us with a few dry hours either side of the race which was lucky with it all being held outside – to make it more Covid safe.
“I’m so grateful to all those that came out and volunteered to allow the event to take place. I am delighted to have set a new course record as I really did not expect that. Well done to everyone that ran over the weekend.”
Mark MacDonald, meanwhile, told the Free Press that he had been apprehensive ahead of the race due to the changeable winter weather but said that it all fell into place come race day.
“A big well done to everyone who made it along to the race. The conditions for the race were great,” he said.
“I was very relieved to see that all the ice had gone, because I didn’t fancy going back down Glenmore on my face!
“I need to thank my physio Kirsty MacDonald for helping me out earlier on in the week. I don’t think I would have been running on Saturday if it weren’t for her. I’m happy with how the run went, carried out my game plan and got the result.”
Eve Bisset was one of eight runners who made the most of the event’s added option of taking part in the race via a race window held between Friday morning and Sunday night.
Speaking to the Free Press, Eve said: “I did Glenmore at the weekend, and I have mostly been doing the winter series virtually.
“It’s fantastic that there is this option for doing the races this way as balancing life with three kids I wouldn’t be able to attend them all.
I’ve really enjoyed the winter series I’ve felt it’s given me a real challenge to try and do them all.”
Glenmore 10k main race results: 1. Mark MacDonald, 35 minutes, 47 seconds; 2. Sarah Attwood, 40:34 (new female course record); 3. Chris James, 42:28; 4. Hugh Standen, 42:48; 5. Ian Silvester, 43:11; 6. Rhianna Kirk, 43:54; 7. Niall Till, 44:43; 8. Niall Stewart, 46:37; 9. Eilidh Towers, 48:24; 10. Richard Stridgeon, 48:30; 11. Angela Roberts, 50:32; 12. Rachel MacDonald, 56:11; 13. Rosanna MacDonald, 56:55; 14. Vicki Dunkel, 57:19; 15. Nina Detlif, 58:19; 16. Chris Attwood, 61:42; 17. Fiona Thomson, 66:58; 18. Bryon Ford, 66:58; 19. Fiona Towers, 67:25.
Virtual 10k race results: 1.Niall Inglis, 47:03; 2. Maggie MacAskill, 51:45; 3. Andy Todd, 54:04; 4. Eve Bisset; 5. Davie Pringle, 57:15; 6. Wilma MacRuary, 59:08; 7. Margaret MacFarlane, 59:50; 8. Anne Phipps, 63:30.
Four-mile distance: Kay MacDonald, 41:16.
Fun run results: First secondary boy, Cailean Dunkel; secondary boy runner-up, Ryan Dunkel; first P4-7 boy, Finlay James; first P4-7 girl, Iona Wilson; second P4-7 boy, Aodhan Stephenson; first P1-3 boy, Frankie Moore; first P1-3 girl, Isla James; second P1-3 boy: Alex Moore.
Article by Adam Gordon, images by Willie Urquhart.