Olympian Pollock takes the Honours in Bangor 10K

24 September 2016

Rio Olympics marathon runner Paul Pollock made light work of both the weather conditions and the opposition in the weekend's Bangor Aurora 10K when he romped home ahead of a 600 strong field. His winning   time of 30 mins 40 secs was commendable given the strong winds and rain.

The 30 year old Holywood doctor showed no signs of post-Olympic staleness  when he accelerated from the start in Ward Park and churned out a first mile time of 4 mins 29 secs. This was sufficient to drop the opposition including recent Belfast Half Marathon winner Freddy Sittuk who clung on gamely but found himself 8 secs adrift at the half way mark.

Pollock was clearly determined to ensure that the Kenyan would not get close enough to apply his renowned sprint finish as he did against Foyle's Scott Rankin in Belfast. The Annadale man gradually increased his lead in the closing stages and enjoyed a 20 secs victory margin over Sittuk for his 4th win in this event.  

These two were in a different class to the opposition with Laganside winner Mark McKinstry of North Belfast a long way back in 3rd spot in 32.53. The top six were completed by Craig McMeechen of North Down (33.06), Lindsay Gordon of North Belfast (33.16) and Newcastle's David O'Flaherty (33.22). 

Pollock who is Ireland's top marathon runner commented;

"I took some 2 to 3 weeks off after Rio and am not therefore quite as fit as usual. My time was a bit slow though the entire race was affected by the strong wind. I decided to break the field early on and then relax a little in the second half."

"I am planning a marathon next February/March in warm temperatures in preparation for my next big goal which is the marathon in the World Championships next summer in London.  My immediate plans are the Cardiff Half Marathon in a week's time followed by the Great South Run.” 

As expected Belfast Half Marathon winner Laura Graham of Mourne Runners   took the honours in the Women's race in a time of 37.01 which placed her an impressive 16th overall. A rejuvenated Cathy McCourt who sustained a broken foot 5 months ago was 2nd in 38.37. Multi Masters champion McCourt will be competing in the World Masters in Perth next month. 

North Down's Jodi Smith took 3rd in 39.26 followed by team mates Katie Moore (39.41) and Rachel Gibson (39.52). Yvonne MacAuley was 6th in 40.22.