Marshall looks class apart
Lamont Marshall wrapped up his long season of racing with a return to the roads and victory in the Labour Day 5K, where he crossed the finish with a near one-minute winning margin.
Among the women, it was Gayle Lindsay, who has also been heavily focused on track running this year, who took the honours.
Marshall, 33, looked a class apart as he built a commanding lead in the first mile. Tim Price made a gallant effort to stay in touch, but was 50 metres adrift of Marshall after the first kilometre.
Along the shadeless drag of Front Street the morning sun beat down on the field of 70 runners, but Marshall was untroubled by the heat and his pedigree as an international athlete with extensive track and road experience was evident as he won in 16min 34sec.
Afterwards he said this season has been his most consistent and rewarding. He has set five national records since January, including twice breaking the indoor 3,000 metres standard — the second time with a time of 8:08.69.
He set new figures outdoors for the 5,000 and 10,000 with times of 14:23.35 and 30:20.45 respectively. While in the 3,000 steeplechase, his primary focus of the season, he set the national mark of 8:49.71 in June. He is now qualified to compete at that event in next year’s Commonwealth Games in Australia.
Marshall said: “I’m winding down now and will take a month off completely from running.”
He would like to have competed in the Fifth Avenue Mile road race in New York this weekend, an event he had competed in many times.
However, the financial strain of his busy season — with ten overseas trips to secure competitive races — means he has to forgo this year’s event in New York.
“My goal was to qualify for the Commonwealth Games, which I achieved, and I set four national records. It is my most consistent season.”
Funding remains a major challenge, and Marshall may now have to go without any overseas warm-up races ahead of the Commonwealth Games in April, although he is watching to see if any additional funding is available following the General Election.
In the 5K, Price was the second finisher, in 17:31, followed by Sean Trott in 18:22.
Women’s champion Lindsay, 28, kept a small group of lead athletes in her sights along Front Street and made up ground on some of them as they tired on the return stretch from East Broadway back into Hamilton.
She was also aware of the challenge from Martina Olcheski-Bell, who was tracking her from a distance.
Lindsay secured victory in 19:56 for seventh position overall. She has been largely focused on track running this summer, and represented Bermuda at the NatWest Island Games in Gotland, Sweden, where she was seventh in the 1,500 and fifth in the 800 final in 2:17.33.
She will compete in the Fifth Avenue Mile event this weekend, where she would like to run close to five minutes.
Olcheski-Bell was women’s runner-up in 20:43, followed by Hilary Haldeman in 21:48.
In the junior 2.2K race, Tommy Marshall, 13, was first in 7:27, followed by Jake Brislane, 12, in 7:53, and first girl Jessie Marshall, 15, in 8:28.
Third boy overall was Jaelyn Grant, 11, in 8:36, while second girl was Myeisha Sharrieff, 11, in 9:05, followed by Jaeda Grant, 8, in 9:07.
The 5K walk was won by Robert Thomas in 34:22, ahead of Joseph Matthew in 35:22, and Aaron Tucker in 36:19. Among the woman Gilda Cann led the way in 38:17, followed by Kerry Brislane in 39:23, and Mariae Dixon in 41:42.
Men’s age division winners in the 5K were: Omari Hart (40-49) in 18:48; Derek Thomas (50-59) in 21:22; Frederick Steede (60-69) in 22:27.
Women’s age division winners were: Jenene Douglas (40-49) in 25:03; Zina Jones (50-59) in 25:52; Mayberline Black (60-69) in 29:28.
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