Hardy runners take weather in their stride

AFTER a gap of almost a decade the Simmer Dim Half Marathon took place last Sunday in what could only be described as changeable weather.

A keen north-easterly breeze did nothing to deter the 48 hardy runners who went to the start line

at the Cunningsburgh Hall. Following a four-mile loop of Cunningsburgh the runners began the hard run back to Lerwick into the wind.

Wilson Moir from Stonehaven and local Karl Simpson set the pace with the former looking strong, having done a sub-three hour marathon in Lochaber back in April. Karl was looking in reasonable nick on the comeback from a niggling leg injury.

ST26 Simmer Marathon

Karl Simpson, who finished second, makes good speed up the hill at Quarff.
Photo: Keith Morrison

Rookie George Abernethy was doing remarkably well in third while Bill Adams was doing a sterling job in fourth.

Julie Mackay and Karen Fraser led the way for the women along with Lynsey Henderson, another newcomer to the distance.

ST26 Simmer Marathon 02

A determined Lynsey Henderson leads the way.
Photo: Keith Morrison

The field was well spread out by the time the first runners hit Shurton Brae, a part of the course all the runners had an issue with. Wilson had built up a good lead and Bill had overhauled George. Through the whole field men and women alike were battling the elements to get to the elusive finish line in the Clickimin car park.

First home was Wilson in 1:20:28, a great time in the conditions. Second was Karl in 1:22:13 and third was Bill in 1:27:53 followed by George in 1:29:34.

The women were pretty true to form with Julie coming in ninth overall in 1:37:18. Karen followed in 13th place in 1:41:22 while Lynsey finished in a very creditable 1:47:50.

Runners do things for all sorts of reasons and throughout the field people were achieving goals. Congratulations to Gary McCarthy who finished in 2:36:10 having refereed the Shetland v Deveronvale football match less than 24 hours beforehand.

Race organiser Paul Woods said he was delighted with everyone’s efforts.

“It was a difficult day but everyone gave their all and as they found in their ‘goody bags’ they were all medal winners. I would like to thank all the athletes for supporting the event, the Northern Constabulary for their work at the start, Tommy Clark and all those from Shetland Aid Trust who marshalled, the ‘cycle medics’ Caroline and Shane for patrolling the course, all those who manned drinks stations and who helped at the finish.

“A big thanks to JW Gray and Tay-Cad, Kevin Jones for the photos and Neil Henderson for the badges, Irvine Contractors, DITT, Sodexo, Cape, SRT and Cee and Jays/Intersport for donating trophies. I hope everyone keeps 21st June 2009 free next year for the 2009 event.”

The full results can be seen by logging on to www.shetlandaac.co.uk.


Senior men: 1 Karl Simpson; 2 George Abernethy; 3 Matthew Cox.

Senior women: 1 Lynsey Henderson; 2 Lynsey Pearson; 3 Donna Mainland.

Veteran men: 1 Wilson Moir; 2 Bill Adams; 3 Mark Sandison.

Veteran women: 1 Julie Mackay; 2 Karen Fraser; 3 Hazel Leask.

Men’s team: Karl Simpson, Bill Adams and George Abernethy.

Women’s team: Julie Mackay, Karen Fraser and Lynsey Henderson

ST26 Simmer Marathon winners

All the trophy winners and medallists. Back (from left): Paul Woods (race organiser), Karen Fraser, Mark Sandison, Lynsey Henderson, George Abernethy, Karl Simpson, Lynsey Pearson. Front: Julie Mackay, Hazel Leask, Donna Mainland, Bill Adams, Wilson Moir.
Photo: Kevin Jones


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