Runners enjoyed calm weather and pleasant March sunshine amid the scenic splendour of North Wales in yesterday's Island Race at Angelsey. An 800 strong field started their race at the Menai Suspension Bridge before taking in the World Heritage site of Beaumaris Castle making it one most scenic races in the UK road running calendar.
Favourable conditions meant that fast times and dozens of PBs were recorded and as wave after wave of runners crossed the finish line there was an overwhelmingly positive reaction from participants once again, signalling that this event has now become a firm favourite on the race calendar.
Welsh international and Eryri Harrier Alun Vaughan started as a firm favourite for the men's race and he turned in an impressive showing to record a new course record of 1:09:56. Vaughan produced a bold front-running performance in what was an excellent preparation for next month's London marathon and praised the course post-race as stunning.
In the women's race there was a tremendous battle between Oswestry Olympian Ali Lavender and Sarah Caskey. Bangor University student Caskey managed to overtake Lavender at the 9 mile marker, however the Oswestry runner was not to be denied as she caught and passed Caskey, and went on to break the 2012 course record by almost ten minutes in 1:21:59. Caskey finished a close second in 1:22:16.
Always Aim High Events once again put on a memorable event, with additional attractions such as the Menai Bridge Brass Band, bouncy castle and a locally sourced BBQ adding to the occasion. Race organiser Tim Lloyd was keen to stress that it was the support of the event partners Cyngor Sir Ynys Mon / Anglesey Council, Kinetica Sports Nutrition and Scott Sports - which really made the event possible. He highlighted the role of Cyngor Sir Ynys Mon / Anglesey Council Sport Development Team in staging the Dragon's Dash kids races which attracted 120 youngsters.
Image courtesy Mel Parry Photography. Results at northernrunningguide.com's race listings page.