It was sunshine and blue skies at this year’s Dunvegan Castle races, but it wasn’t all plain sailing.
A strong wind gave the runners some additional work on the challenging course, which attracted a record number of entries this year. Growing interest in the event may have been due to some of the changes made by the race organisers, Skye Events.
Holding the 2019 event earlier in the season, prior to the opening of the castle itself, gave both participants and spectators the run of the castle grounds, café and finish area, and created a great atmosphere.
Also new this year was the Griegs Seafood 5K. Aimed at all abilities, the new race was well received by runners and also supported by the local GP surgery, whose practice nurse, Morag Macdonald, ran a weekly Couch to 5K group in the lead-up to the race. Morag’s group went on to win the event’s team prize as the 'Monkey Puzzle Troupers', so named in honour of their weekly running route, which encompassed said tree.
The Griegs Seafood 5K was won by local 13-year-old Alex Jamieson (Inverness Harriers) in a time of 21.46. The first female was Heather Oakley, taking part in her first race – in a pair of pyjamas – to finish in 27.47.
The main event, the mixed-terrain Dunvegan Castle 10K, was won by Kenny MacGruer of Caithness-based North Highland Harriers in a time of 37.59. Kenny was followed over the line by Alun Beckett (39:13) and local runner Chris James (40.40).
Hot on Chris's heels was the first female, local runner Sarah Jamieson, who finished in an impressive time of 40.44. Sarah was followed by Rebecca Miller, also from Skye, in 51.23 and then Susan Maclennan in 51.30.
The 1.5-mile Fun Run started out at a fast pace on a mainly off-road course. Local boy Oliver Langlands won the race overall, closely followed by Tabitha Jones, who was second overall and first female.
Image courtesy Skye Events