Robbie Simpson celebrates 10K success in Aberdeen with Kenny Wilson and Cameron Strachan (photos via Great Run)
Love was in the air at the front of the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run 10km field, as Commonwealth Games marathon bronze medallist Robbie Simpson and his partner Virginie Barrand took the top spots in the men’s and women’s races.
Simpson was given a huge welcome as he sprinted to victory in a highly competitive 10km with a time of 30.01.
‘Everybody expected it to be a close race and some people doubted if I’d be able to win it, so I am pleased to have run as well as I did,’ said Robbie, who was followed home by second placed Kenny Wilson (31.27) and Cameron Strachan (32.34).
‘I thought I had gone under 30 minutes but it was very close so I can’t complain. It’s the fastest 10K I’ve run for quite a while despite not doing any specific road training, so that’s encouraging. I thought it would be tougher than it was but I actually liked the hills.’
In the women’s race, Virginie Barrand claimed victory in 36.39 after making a strong run for home in the second-half of the race.
‘I w as lying in fourth position until around the halfway point but after that I could see I was gaining on the others, particularly on the uphill sections,’ she said, with Kayleigh Jarrett (36.51) and Claire Bruce (37.21) making it a Metro Aberdeen 1-2-3.
‘I put my head down and gave it everything. I was borderline feeling sick, but I didn’t look back and kept pushing on and hoped for the best. I was on a mission because I did badly in this race last year and wanted to make up for that.’
Virginie Barrand led home a Metro Aberdeen 1-2-3 in the women’s 10K race
Simpson barely had time to catch his breath after completing the 10km before jogging over to the half marathon where he fulfilled the role of official starter.
In the half marathon, Kristian Jones won the men’s race in 1:06:35 and Sheena Logan from Fife AC was the first female over the finish line in 1:21:56.
Jones won it from Metro Aberdeen duo Kyle Greig (71.23) and Jason Kelly (72.20).
Logan was followed home by Katie Iliffe (85.34) and Jennifer Cruickshanks (86.20).
The runners were spurred on by Bands on the Run with the energetic Dezibel Drumming Band at Mounthooly roundabout, Scottish piper Chris Sibbald in Old Aberdeen, and the Northsound1 Cheer Zone on the Ellon Road.
Kerry Simpson, communications manager at The Great Run Company, said: ‘The second staging of the Simplyhealth Great Aberdeen Run was yet another celebration in the city, with people from across the UK taking on their own personal challenge.
‘We witnessed some outstanding times from the elite runners and many inspiring performances from thousands of others, including the spectators, who braved the morning showers to come out and support in the city centre and along the route.’