By Dean “The Sportsman” Greenaway
Already the No 2 all time performer in the history of the HLSCC Mourant College Classic Series with his 10 minutes 41.86 seconds time from 2018, Neil Riley came up 0.32 seconds short of Clif Struiken’s 2018 course record of 10:30.96, when he stopped the clock at 10:31.28, to win Saturday’s race.
“I just wanted to get out there and go as quick as possible, same as most weeks, but I didn’t think I’d be anything near as quick as it turned out today—turned out a second off Clif’s record which I didn’t realize,” Riley said. “Maybe on a different day, if I’d seen the time, I could have done that. But I was out there. I raced hard. I had fun and that’s the good thing. I know I can break the record. This has to come together on the right day and the right time. If it comes together on the (final) day, I know I’ve got it.”
Riley who opened the series with 10:56.68 on Sept 15, at the time said he thought he could chop 30 seconds off, said he ran the race better than the first two races as his pacing was better and he took the hill as he should.
“I don’t think there’s an aspect of the race I need to improve on, I just need to improve on overall fitness and just get that second or two, that should be enough,” he said.
Katrina “Kat” Lindsay, fifth overall in 12:23.81, said it was a ‘hard race.’
“I didn’t really get into a rhythm today, so when the boys took off, halfway up the hill, I just couldn’t go with them, I was really struggling going up,” she noted. “I started to get a good rhythm on the way down and had a good finish. I’m a wee bit disappointed with today’s run, but it’s a good lesson for next time.”
A budding rivalry among women has developed in the Service Clubs category, between Tuneisha Johnson of the Rotaract Club and the Rotary Club of Tortola’s Stacy-Ann Wynter. Wynter had dominated the Women’s race but lost to Johnson and promised to get her in their next race.
“Of course I beat her,” Johnson said. “Stacy said she was coming for me, but she didn’t know I had something for her—try again next time.”
Wynter said Johnson was the better runner on the day. “I tried but she has more kick than me,” she said. “I have to train. I don’t train.”
Johnson said she has been going to the gym and running on Sundays.
“It’s been a vast improvement, especially from last year, it has been extremely different,” Johnson said.
Meanwhile, Reuben Stoby chopped his own Service Clubs Division record of 12 minutes 14.44 seconds from the last race to 11:46.92.