Impressive Western Isles medal haul at Island Games

On Wednesday morning the Western Isles team medal tally sat at nine following some memorable performances at the NatWest Island Games in Jersey at the start of this week.

Swimmer Kara Hanlon took gold in the 200 metres breaststroke final on Tuesday night — shattering the games record by four seconds to follow up the silver medal she won for the 50 metres breaststroke on Monday.

A delighted Kara Hanlon with her dad David

Kara is the first Western Isles swimmer to win medals at the Island Games, but given that 14-year-old Lucienne Doig was also in Tuesday night’s final, she may not be the last.

Kara has made it through to the 100 metres breaststroke final and Kathryn Offer is in the final of the 50 metres freestyle.

On the track Donnie MacLeod successfully defended his 800 metres title with a magnificent run – clocking one minute and 53.89 seconds after sprinting clear of the field over the closing 300 metres.

A jubilant Donnie MacLeod

He goes in the 400 mteres later this week, and will also have a part to play in the relay squad.

Eilidh MacKenzie was one of four runners to go inside the previous games best in the 1,500 metres final — but the Lewis runner just missed out on a fourth consecutive gold at the distance. This time she had to settle for silver behind Rachel Franklin of the Isle of Man.

Eve Carrington — who finished fourth in the 400 metres and has previously won medals in the triple jump, the high jump and on the track — again displayed her athletic versatility by taking bronze in the shot putt.

Earlier in the week Uist’s Kerry MacPhee won a gold, and her sister Kirsty a silver, in the mountain bike cross country event. The sisters’ performances also helped the Western Isles to team gold.

On the shooting range Donald Walker from Uist was in joint third place in the automatic ball trap individual shooting competition.

His bronze is the first medal won by a Western Isles shooter.

More reports and pictures from the Games in this week’s West Highland Free Press