Week ending 15 March

posted 16 Mar 2015, 16:27 by Johan Meintjies
After a relatively quiet couple of weeks, Linlithgow AC athletes put their hours of training to the test over the weekend over much bigger distances than of late.

Saturday saw the first ultramarathon of the season with the D33 race heading out of Aberdeen, Course conditions were good with the winning time smashing previous best times by over 19 minutes. All the three Linlithgow athletes competing achieved personal best times with Gerry McArdle competing for the first time at this distance leading the club home.  Gerry completed the 33 mile course in 4:43:21 (87th) finishing just ahead of Johan Meintjies (91st) in 4:43:55. Gerry was buzzing after his first ultra , being thrilled both at having beaten team mate Johan in the last 500m and at achieving sub  8minute miles in the last miles of the race. Malcolm Hughes was also pleased with his finishing time of 5:17:16 (177th), with 33 miles being shorter than most of the ultras that he typically enters. 338 runners completed. 

On Sunday,  15 Linlithgow athletes were relieved to wake up to fairly benign conditions for the Alloa half marathon, which was the first club championship of the season.  There were some fantastic individual performances from the Linlithgow squad, with many runners recording personal best times for this challenging road race distance.
There was a ding –dong battle for first place within the club with John Smith leading Michal Sroka for the last few miles. Michal dug deep and managed to pip John to the line in a sprint battle. Michal and John were separated by only one second in 1:28:08 and 1:28:09 respectively.

Leading the ladies home and in a fantastic sixth place overall for the club was Karen Duncan, running her debut half marathon. Karen finished in 1:36:59.

Alison Marshall and Darren Dick had great confidence boosters for their London and Edinburgh Marathon training, both recording PBs with Darren finishing in 1:37:59 and Alison in 1:48:10. PB were also recorded by Ian Campbell, Rosemary Gallagher and Sarah Crewes.

Personal best times were not the only thing to put a smile on the runners’ faces this year. Following the trend of recent years for bright t-shirts, the organisers handed out shocking pink t-shirts for all finishers. Both male and female runners wore these with pride!

Finishing times and positions for Linlithgow Athletic Club members were as follows: - 
Michal Sroka, 1:28:08 (170) –PB; John Smith. 1:28:09 (171), Angus Gallie, 1:30:18 (214); Paul Dudchenko, 1:34:28 (300); Karen Duncan, 1:36:59 (366) – PB; Ian Campbell, 1:37:02 (368) – PB; Darren Dick, 1:37:59 (397) – PB; Rosemary Gallagher, 1:42:54 (572) – PB; Nadine McAlpine, 1:43:47 (603); Alison Marshall, 1:48:10 (747) – PB; Sarah Crewes, 1:48:49 (778) – PB; Bryan Grome, 1:50:37 (833); Felicity Harrison, 1:53:55 (945); Jennifer Newton, 1:54:53 (982); Darren Robertson, 2:00:15 (1146). 1661 completed.

In the usual weekend parkruns, veteran runners Roddy Simpson and Jill Horsburgh competed at Falkirk, both winning their age categories by a convincing margin. Jill finished 12th female in a respectable for age 25:12, whilst Roddy continued his run of fine form and achieved yet another PB of 23:06, finishing 35th of 183 runners.