Aly Smashes Women’s Record in Flotta

THE Flotta 10k took place in bright and sunny conditions on Sunday – well, excellent if you were a spectator – but challenging to say the least if you were a runner!

There was a strong headwind for most of the course with the heat of the sun also a factor in sheltered areas, and despite Flotta being known as a flat island, the 10k seems to fit in as many of the hills as possible!

The event was won by well-known Orkney runner Graham Harcus, who said both the conditions and the course had been challenging, but he and everyone else taking part agreed they had a very enjoyable day, including the socialising back at the community centre after the race.

There were various fundraising stalls set up and a meal was provided by Sodexo for everyone taking part, which was very much appreciated by everyone. Other refreshments were also on offer.

Vice-chairman of Flotta Community Council, Isobel Smith, thanked everyone for coming out to Flotta, and also fundraising for the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) on the day. The organisation provided tee-shirts for those runners and walkers donating to the charity.

There was also a very interesting display in the hall detailing the experiences of Flotta folk who have served in the military over the years.
Isobel also thanked Sodexo for the food, Talisman for filling the potholes on the Westhill Road and for providing passenger ferry transport for the event, and Orkney Ferries for their extra sailing.

“It has been a super day, the weather has been great and we hope to see you all again next year,” she added.

For the race itself, there was an excellent entry of 36 runners and walkers, a good mix of Flotta residents and visitors.

Graham Harcus took an early lead but was closely followed by Ian Sutcliffe for the first part of the race. Ollie Ross, Mark Dowell and Sandy Kerr were all close behind and slowly began to overtake Ian.

In the women’s race Aly Bain took an early lead with Rhian Mackay clear in second place. This was a first 10k for both girls and they were running well.

As the race progressed, Graham pulled out more and more of a lead but behind him Olly, Mark and Sandy were having a great competition, with Ian slipping back. Farther down the field, Andrew Want and Brian Davis were going well while Evelyn Grant and Ruth Spence were having their usual battle.

Graham came to the finish line in a time of 38 minutes 59 seconds and a fast finishing Olly Rees beat Mark Dowell by 12sec to come second.

Aly Bain was puting in a tremendous performance and won the women’s race in 44min 33sec, smashing the old record by 3min 20sec! Rhian Mackay was second, also inside the old record by 1min 6sec, a great effort by both girls.

The first female veteran was Evelyn Grant, beating Ruth by less than a minute while the first Flotta resident home this year was Sandra Robertson with a fine time of 51min 19sec.

Throughout the field there were excellent performances from established runners as well as new joggers. Craig Taylor showed a clean pair of heels to John Mowat, fresh from his exertions on the hustings. Claire Stevenson had a close competition and just held on to beat Pat Ayre, and Kay Mills and Jennifer Ryrie were only separated by one second.

The juniors set off at the same time as the senior race but started at the halfway point. Kieran Gray and Andrew Davis had a fine race with Andrew, despite a great effort, just beaten by Kieran by 14 seconds. Aimee Davis, Andrew’s sister, also ran well and came in in third place overall (and first girl) in a very good time of 30min 41sec.

Orkney Athletic Club said they would like to thank all the people of Flotta for their support of this event and particularly Phyllis Gee for her liaison and work throughout the preceding months. Sodexo again provided an excellent lunch and our thanks go to them for all the help and support they have given. The club also thanked all the runners and walkers who took part.

The next event on the athletic calendar is the Hoy Half Marathon, followed by the Stromness Shopping Week 10k on Saturday, July 24.

Norman Shearer from the club also said that they are also trying to arrange a 5k in Kirkwall and a half marathon in the West Mainland sometime in late June so please watch the press for details.
1 (first veteran male) Graham Harcus 38.59; 2 (first senior male) Olly Rees 41.42; 3 Mark Dowell 41.54; 4 Sandy Kerr 43.14; 5 Ian Sutcliffe 44;16; 6 (first senior female) Aly Bain 44.33; 7 Andrew Want 45.16; 8 Rhian Mackay 46.57; 9 Marc Blair 47.04; 10 Brian Davis 47.56; 11 Calvin Reid 49.40; 12 (first veteran female) Evelyn Grant 50.17; 13 Ruth Spence 51.09; 14 (first Flotta resident) Sandra Robertson 51.19; 15 Liz Mackay 52.04; 16 Adam Clarke 55.35; 17 Richard Darbyshire 55.41; 18 Craig Taylor 55.49; 19 Claire Stevenson 56.07; 20 Pat Ayre 56.13; 21 Kay Mills 57.57; 22 Jennifer Ryrie 57.58; 23 Alan Rosie 60.20; 24 equal Shona Reid and Lynne Croy 65.19; 26 Dawn Rosie 66.10; 27 John Mowat 66.35; 28 Tracey Gray 78.54; 29 James Sevelus 82.59; 30 Exaine Tsopotsa 91.28; 31 Lily Manson 105.00; 32 equal Shirley Simpson and Christine Rosie 137.00

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