Marshall breaks 24-year-old record
Records are there to be broken, but it took 24 years and an exceptional head-to-head battle to finally topple the Butterfield and Vallis 5K road race event best.
Lamont Marshall had the swiftest feet, but there was no room for easing back on the pace as Chris Estwanik relentlessly chased him all the way around the course in Pembroke.
Marshall, 35, won in 15min 9sec to smash Kavin Smith's 1996 event record of 15:35.
Two-times winner Estwanik, who matched Smith's record in 2008, was rewarded with his best time in the race, coming home second in 15:28.
Among the women, Gayle Lindsay ran her fastest 5K on the island to win in 18:57.
Overall winner Marshall was the early leader as hundreds of runners streamed along Woodlands Road at the start of the race. Estwanik closed the gap just before they reached the steep incline at Berkeley Road, and stayed in contact along part of North Shore Road, before Marshall made a move and opened up what turned out to be a winning gap between the two runners.
Marshall's father and coach, Larry Marshall, said: “We're definitely pleased with the race today, and any time you set a course record it's good.”
Marshall's next race is a 5,000 metres indoor race on Valentine's Day in Boston, where he hopes to challenge his national record of 14:16, set a year ago.
Beyond that, he is planning a 15K race in Florida, where he will also target his national record of 47:55, and then focus on defending his Bermuda Day Half-Marathon Derby title.
Marshall's father said his son hopes to attract more sponsorship to help him afford to train and race off island as he looks to further his track racing ambitions ahead of a possible tilt at the 2021 World Athletics Championships.
Runner-up Estwanik, 39, said he appreciated being pulled to a much faster time that he thought he would achieve.
“I was thinking that if I could break 16 minutes on this course today, I would be super happy. When you have someone out in front to chase, it pulls you to a faster time.
“Lamont's in good shape and has some goals for the track this year. It was so much fun to be with him. That's one of the faster times I've run on this course. That's the beauty of having such competition.”
Estwanik has built up his running to three days a week, and he's now looking at competing in the Bermuda Day Half-Marathon in May; a race he has won six times. Third-place man was Kwame Curling in 17:45.
Women's winner Lindsay, 31, who hails from Scotland, said: “This is the first time I've gone under 19 minutes in Bermuda, although I ran a personal best when I went home for Christmas, when I ran 18:41.
The 2017 champion was runner-up last year. She was happy to be back at the top of the podium this year, and only nine days after winning the Butterfield Front Street Mile local women's race to complete a hat-trick of victories in that event.
Second woman in the 5K was senior master Karen Smith, in 21:02, followed by Nicole Cook in 21:14.
There was a 5K race for schools. The senior school winner was Ryan Outerbridge in 17:05, from Tommy Marshall in 17:27, and Kahzi Sealey in 17:41. The senior school girls' winner was Jezhari Talbot in 22:20, from Liana Medeiros in 22:36, and Jessie Marshall in 24:06.
The middle school 2.7K race was won by Eoghan Homan in 9:44, from Bakari Furbert in 9:58, and first girl Daria Desmond in 10:20. The third boy was A. Lefebvre in 10:37, while the second girl was J. Grant in 10:27, followed by Camryn Lines in 11:26.
The primary school 2.7K race was won by S. Smith in 11:25, followed by T. Jackson in 11.25, and M. Parry in 11:27. The top three girls were C. Abend in 11:48, K. Daley in 11:56, and A. Munya in 12:10.
In the lower primary 1K race, first boy was Jace Postlethwaite in 4:04, while the first girl was Poppy Parry in 4:34.
The competitive 5K walk was won by Louise Charleston in 35:41, followed by Junior Watts in 36:03, and Kenneth O'Neill in 38:01. Second woman was Gina Bradshaw in 38:40.