What started out as a dull and damp Sunday morning (October 9) eventually developed into ideal racing conditions for the 22nd annual Bennachie Hill Race and Junior Hill Race as Garioch Roadrunners welcomed a total of 165 runners to the event, equalling the record attendance from last year.
Forres Harriers' Kyle Greig was the defending champion from 2010 and came into the race in excellent form, following a recent win at the Baxters' Loch Ness 10k. Taking an early lead, Kyle was able to maintain the advantage from a pursuing pack including Hunter Bog Trotter Alec Keith and Highland Hill Runners' Graeme Campbell and David Wilby, eventually winning the race in 55:39. Alec Keith finished second in 58:45, with David Wilby third in 59:02.
In the womens' race, Cosmic Hillbasher Veronique Oldham retained her title, finishing as first lady in 1:09:55. Sarah Styles of Metro Aberdeen finished second in 1:13:43, followed by Liz Delaney of the Cosmics in 1:16:24.
In the team event, Highland Hill Runners finished as first male team, with Cosmic Ladies A first female team. Aberdeen University claimed the prize for first mixed team. In the junior hill race, Fraser Drummond of the Cosmic Hillbashers was first boy, in 20:58, with Eve Sealy of Banchory Stonehaven finishing as first girl in 25:41.
Bennachie is the third of three races in the Aberdeenshire Hill Race series, also comprising Morven and Cairn William. Over the course of the three races, Chris Tomlin of the Cosmics emerged as first male in a cumulative time of 2:47:34, with Mel Angus (Fat Bobs) as first female in 3:55:57.
Huge thanks to all those who assisted with the race, including all volunteers and marshals, in ensuring another successful event. Also, thanks to our sponsors Run 4 It, who kindly provided category prizes for the race.
Link to full results at scottishrunningguide.com's races/results page.