Husband and wife team power to victory in Bacardi 8K
Ashley Estwanik smashed the women's course record in the Bacardi 8K road race, running away with the women's title in a time of 30 minutes and 13 seconds.
And for the third time in four years it was a husband and wife double celebration as Chris Estwanik powered to overall victory in 25.05. The couple previously won both the men's and women's titles in 2010 and 2011.
A southwesterly wind yesterday swirled around parts of the course, which wound its way to Spanish Point and back along North Shore Road, Berkeley Hill and Pitts Bay Road.
Ashley was mostly untroubled by the conditions, managing to shelter among the men in the chasing pack during parts of the race.
Her nearest rival was training partner Deon Breary, who was 20th overall in 32.56, while Krista Dyer was third woman and 30th overall in 34.35.
Ashley, 35, said: “I love this race. The support was great and the race is put on so well. There was some wind but I did not let it get to me.”
Her winning time broke the women's course record of 30.59 set last year by Rose-Anne Hoey.
Looking ahead, Ashley is likely to be busy during January's Bermuda Marathon Weekend where she plans to run the KPMG Front Street Mile and the triple-race Bermuda Triangle Challenge, which she won in 2010. She also has her sights set on the New York City Half-Marathon in March.
Husband Chris, who is coming back from an injury that sidelined him a week before this year's May 24 Half-Marathon Derby, was a comfortable winner and only 20 seconds adrift of his 2011 course record.
“I've forgotten what winning was all about,” he said. “I pushed hard for the first three or four miles, but in the last mile I struggled. I'm glad to be back. For a long time — 10 years — I was healthy with no injuries and you end up taking that for granted. Then you get hurt and you realise you feel your life is not complete if you are not running.”
He said it felt good to be back among runners, enjoying a weekend race and seeing familiar faces and friends. The 33-year-old is still considering his options for Bermuda Marathon Weekend but may focus on the 10K event.
Second in the race was Stephen Allen, in a time of 27.10, ahead of Christopher Harris (28.59).
Allen said: “There was a lot of wind. I'm pleased with my time. I was trying to stay as close to Chris [Estwanik] as possible. He seems to be in good shape.”
Another course record to tumble this year was in the senior masters women's division, where Karen Adams' winning time of 37.23 eclipsed the 2010 record of Christina Westholm-Schrod by 35 seconds.
In the 8K walk, held in conjunction with the run, Sinclair Smith was first in 54.51, ahead of Howard Williams (55.00) and Gary Young (56.19). First woman and fourth overall was Winnelle Simons in 57.29, ahead of Sheena Young (60.56) and Terri Durrant (62.47).
There were 347 finishers in the road race and 61 finishers in the walk.