Island adventure for determined Kirkintilloch Olympians

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THE annual Arran Half Marathon last Sunday attracted 130 runners – and 20 of them were from the Kirkintilloch Olympians.

The promise of better summer weather and the fact that this race was part of the club championship, meant the local athletes were in fine form as they landed on the island.

Despite the later arrival of the boat and bus, the race started shortly after midday at Blackwaterfoot, just as the sun broke through on what had been a dreich morning.

On the first few miles of gentle climbing, Olympian Stephen Allan was part of the trailing group at the front of the race, behind a trio of Edinburgh runners who went on to win the top three places.

Graham McCabe, Gary Mitchell and Jeffrey Mallock were not far behind with Robert Rogerson only one place adrift as the top local athletes.

After six miles, however, these positions changed as Robert Rogerson lifted the speed on the long climb inland and eventually he caught Stephen Allan at 12 miles to take the honour of first Olympian over the line in 12th place.

Jeffrey Malluck was more than a minute behind with Stephen Allan (15th), ahead of Graham McCabe, David Hogg and Gary Mitchell.

The club’s first female finisher was Annmarie McCaffrey, whose time of 1hr 34mins allowed her to lift the Vet 35 prize.

Despite the challenging course, there were a surprising number of personal best times from the Olympians – amongst them Allison Law, who took seven minutes off her best time, and Jeffrey Malluck, who was more than a minute faster than on the flat course of Glasgow.

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