Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Three Bridges hat-trick

It used to be the case that Moorfoot winners in the Three Bridges races were like hens’ teeth but on Sunday, Sophie Collins made it three in a row in the open 3-mile handicap, albeit this year donning the green vest of Edinburgh Uni. But her blood runs red and blue, so we’ll claim it as a Moorfoot win.

Right in the midst of her 2nd year exams Sophie said before the race that she was just out for a break from her studies and to cheer on wee sis Madeline in the Primary girls’ race, but she set off at a good clip, looking like she was out to improve on last year’s third place when she was caught inside the final 400m by the young Moorfoot guns Ben Hindley and Sam McNeill, both of whom were also back for another go.

Having been set off seventh runner by the handicapper in a healthy field of twenty four, a third of which were from Teviotdale Harriers, Sophie was up to second as she went through the bell (as if anyone needed reminding that they had one lap to go) but with a determined looking Alex Corbett from Teviotdale still close behind and moving well. Backmarkers Ben Hindley and Rory Anderson were powering through the field at an impressive pace but still had significant ground to make up on the second lap. By this time Sam McNeill had unfortunately had to call it a day having been struggling recently with a chest infection.

Heading back towards Tweed Bridge and Sophie, as last year, had hit the front and she emerged into view through the railway tunnel with a 40m lead on old man Corbett, but by now he’d lost his flow, looking like he had lead in his shoes. Then flying round the corner came unknown woman (will update when the official results are out!), eyes fixed firmly on the two ahead. If Kenny and the Silver Band playing on Tweed Green had struck up the theme from Jaws at this point it would have been fitting. Would Sophie have enough left in the tank to avoid being gobbled up again?

Onto Priorsford Bridge, unknown woman had closed to within 30m, but Sophie was strong on the final run to the line off the bridge, actually extending her lead again with an impressive sprint down Tweed Green to hit the tape a clear winner. Alex Corbett held on for third.

Ben put up a brave effort in defending his title and ran well for 6th off a much-reduced handicap compared to last year.

There was a healthy Moorfoot entry for the Youths’ handicap and despite the attentions of the handicapper after his victory last year Ethan Elder again romped away with it, blasting through the field of fourteen from the back to establish a lead well before the return to Tweed Bridge. Finlay Collins pipped Beth Hobbs for the runners-up spot with Mairi Wallace 6th, Charlotte Morrison 7th, Eilidh Mooney 8th and Maxwell Drummond 9th.

Plenty of good showings too from junior Moorfoots in the Primary School races, winners being Esme Minto and Murray Aiken.

1 comment:

Borders Cross Country said...

Unknown woman was Sarah. Sarah Blake before she got married. Penicuik Harriers mostly. Represented Scotland as a junior in the World Mountain Running Trophy race in Alaska some years ago.
Mike Pearson