Riley Leads USVI, BVI Runners In HLSCC Mourant College Race


Neil Riley leads the field during Saturday’s race

By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway

Neil Riley ran 10 minutes 53.67 seconds to win Saturday’s HLSCC Mourant College Classic Series race in Paraquita Bay, as six St. Thomas runners came over and mixed it up with their Tortola counter parts.

“It was a little bit cooler today so I was hoping to use that to my advantage to go a little quicker, but then I was also a bit more respectful of the hill than last week,” Riley noted. “So I actually started out a little bit slower to end up quicker and being more respectful of the hill, managed to get to get to the turnaround a bit slower than last week and then managed to come back a bit on the faster side—four seconds faster than last time—so who knows if it’s the actual change in pace for the difference.”

Julaine Potgieter, the top Woman in 13:49, said it was a nice race and the weather was perfect. 

“It was a lot harder than I remembered. I haven’t done it in something like three years, to the hill is a beast. It is really hard in the end, but my aim was to beat my son (Sam) and I did. He was ahead of me so he was a good pacemaker.”

Sam’s response? “I know she had no chance,” said Sam who ran 14:17. “But after the race, I was out of breath and really tired.”

Coach Dale Joseph brought six participants from St. Thomas.

“We decided we’d come over to the annual college 2 miler because it will be a good test for to so see where we stand at this particular point,” Jones said, nothing that Orin Stapleton, ninth overall in 13:19, was their top finished. “Our practices have been going fairly steady and we’re looking for more improvement as we go along. This first race is a good test to see where they are right now.”

Nicola Fraser one of the two female runners said it was a good race after finishing in 21:30.

“When I was going up I was actually asking myself what am I doing,” she said. “Coming back down it was pretty good and my teammates cheered me on which pumped me up. When I was finishing, there was a little girl about almost eight years old and I was like ‘oh no, I’m not gonna race this girl to the end’ but, she stopped to tie her shoelace then tried to catch me but I got there before her.”

The Rotary Club of Tortola continued its splendid Service Clubs run, but its top woman—Stacy-Anny Wynter—was beaten, while Reuben Stoby’s 12:14.44 eclipsed the course record. 

“It was really hard for me and I think I burned around the corner. I have no idea what happened today but next time, I’m going to bring my A game, and see what comes,” she said. “There’s a Roatractor who beat me today. I’m coming back for you.”