A WEEKEND of stunning autumn sunshine brought out the best in Gala Harriers as both juniors and seniors turned in superb performances at Edinburgh and East Lothian.
The Doon Hill race at Dunbar on Sunday attracted at least 70 runners, among them senior Harriers vying for the top men’s team prize.
Graham Manzak stormed home first for the club round the testing multi-terrain course in 66 minutes and 5 seconds, with Billy McCulloch following him in 67.53, passing Steve Martin (68.22) during the final mile and picking up third in the 50+ age category.
Despite their best efforts, the team were pipped into second by Portobello AC.
A little further down the field were Graham (74.59) and Andrea (78.34) Pogson on their steady return to previous form, Andrea collecting the bronze-medal place in the age category awards.
BUPA’s Great Edinburgh Run in Holyrood Park always provides a wonderful stage for runners to build on their summer training and look towards the cross-country campaign – and this year the club’s juniors were star performers.
In the younger age group, an Olympic effort saw Rory Williams take first place in 8 minutes and 49 seconds, with Andrew Hogg an excellent and well-deserved third place in 9.00 exactly. Andrew’s sister, Cara (9.48), bagged third in the girls’ race, with good runs coming from Jamie Kinghorn (9.41), Colette Kaines Lang (11.52), and Mark Purves having to cover the ground to the finish at a walking pace, having picked up a foot injury.
The older junior boys also showed clean pairs of heels, in particular Gavin Bryson who sped home in fifth slot (7.55), with Joe Agnew (8.56) and Joey Brown (9.44) collecting 15th and 17th places respectively.
For the seniors, Dawn Grant took club honours with the fastest 10k from the Gala team in 47.38, with Gina Allen a bare minute behind her in 48.39. Kelly Doogan, returning after the most recent addition to the family, was safely home in 1.02.09, with Anne Purves coming back from injury (1.06.04) and new club president Gerry Moss gallantly supporting his daughter around her first 10km in 1.10.21.