Photo by Bobby Gavin
Magnificent Callum Hawkins smashed the Scottish Half Marathon record – and duly became the first men’s home winner of the Great Scottish Run for 33 years.
The Olympic marathon runner clocked a stunning 60.24 to win from Glasgow 2014 10,000m champion, Uganda’s Moses Kipsiro, with a huge PB that takes him second to Mo Farah on the British all-time list.
It was also a course record as the 24-year-old Scot eclipsed the 61.09 run by Haile Gebrselassie three years ago and the first Scottish winner since Peter Fleming in 1983 (when it was a full marathon).
Hawkins eclipsed the Scottish record and he successfully defended his Scottish Half Marathon title, with Beth Potter doing the same with a 72.07 PB in the Women’s race.
Callum ground out the resistance of 2015 Great Scottish Run champion Kipsiro after the halfway stage – even though the Kilbarchan AAC athlete had already been through 10K marginally quicker than his PB at that distance.
The lead was significant by the time he turned into Glasgow Green and the look on his face close to the finishing line, as he spotted the time on the clock, was priceless – his shock and awe only matched by the excitement of the crowd.
‘I was not expecting that; I thought I would be around 62 minutes or something like that,’ said Callum, who clocked 62.42 last year and had a PB of 62.36 from Paris early in 2016. Kipsiro was second in 60.54 with Kenyan athlete, Joel Kimutai, third in 61.34.
‘I still can’t believe it. Actually, out on the course, I thought the mile markers had been wrongly placed. It was only close to the finish I really realised when I saw the clock.
‘In terms of Moses, luckily I raced him last year so I knew what to expect. But he’s a quality athlete. Just having him trying to hang on really spurred me to put the boot in.
‘It is great to win it and follow on from Rio. Marathon training seems to agree with me. I did take a couple of weeks off after coming back from Brazil but it has been good to pick it up again in the past few weeks and this augurs well for the winter.
There were Scottish medals for Shettleston’s Tewolde Mengisteab in 64.23 and a bronze for Fife AC’s Andrew Lemoncello 65.49. There were also fine performances by Tsegai Tewelde (65.53), Neil Renault (66.11) and Jack Walker (66.29) to make it six Scots under 67 minutes.
Potter took the Scottish gold in a time of 72.07 and the silver went to Fionnuala Ross of Shettleston with 74.17 and third to Kilbarchan’s Gemma Rankin in 75.18. There were PBs there for Potter, Ross and Rankin. The race was won by Kenya’s Betsy Saina in 67.22.
For Potter, the VP-Glasgow athlete who is now based in London, it was a thrilling day after disappointment in Rio at the 10,000m.
‘It just happened I was ill on race day at the Olympics,’ she said. ‘I found it really difficult when I was out in Rio, just coping with being there. It was amplified because it was the Olympics. If it was just a BMC event, I’d have put it down to being a bad race.
‘But I feel much more motivated now going into the new season. It’s massive to have World Champs in London to look forward to and I’m pleased with this run.’
We now have confirmed team results from the Great Scottish Run – with Shettleston Harriers taking the golds in both the Men’s and Women’s races.
Edinburgh AC took the silvers in both categories and there were bronzes for the men for Garscube Harriers and Bellahouston Road Runners in the women’s race.
Well done to all who raced and congratulations to the clubs involved – with medals to be issued in due course.
The Scottish Half Champs are scored on points (the marathon is done by cumulative times).
1 Shettleston – 13 pts: Tewolde Mengisteab 2; Tsegai Tewelde 4; Peter Avent 7
2 Edinburgh – 41 pts: Neil Renault 5; Iain Whitaker 15; Callum Reid 21
3 Garscube Harriers – 74 pts: Del Young 18; Garry Mathew 23; Donald McPartlin 33
1 Shettleston – 27 pts: Fionnuala Ross 1; Avril Mason 7; Ruth Joss 18
2 Edinburgh – 30 pts: Gillian Palmer 6; Laura Dunn 10; Jenny Maclean 14
3 Bellahouston RR – 107 pts: Deborah Gray 19; Louise Ross 27; Mhairi Hill 61.
Callum with fellow Scottish Half medallists, Tewolde Mengisteab and Andrew Lemoncello
Welsh athlete Jonathan Hopkins won the 10K race in 30.21 from Ben Stevenson of Falkirk Vics (30.38), with Ryan Thomson of Cambuslang taking third with a fine PB of 31.08.
Josephine Moultrie won the Women’s 10k race in 34.22 and was followed home by Jenny Bannerman (Inverness Harriers) in 35,26 and Louise Mercer (Edinburgh Uni Hares and Hounds).
‘I enjoyed it and it was about 30 seconds faster than the Scottish 10K at Stirling so I am pleased with that improvement,’ said Moultrie, the VP-Glasgow athlete winning in her home city.
‘I will probably look to do the Leeds 10K at the start of November ahead of the cross country season – and the Euro Cross trials in Liverpool.
‘Really, the road races are just to get me used to some longer, faster running with a view to improving my endurance for a move up to 5000m on the track next summer. That is still the goal but this just takes me out of my comfort zone a little bit.
‘It was hard going up the hill at the start but after a bit I was into my stride and there were a group of guys I could keep running with. It felt good and I’m happy with the time.’
Mark Telford was the best Scottish performance in the wheelchair 10K. Paralympian Derek Rae took 10 seconds off his half marathon PB with a run of 71.46.
Women’s 10K winner Josephine Moultrie and the Men’s 1-2-3