Grumpy Old Men made them laugh

The Cross Island Relay was held on
Sunday and it had another marvellous turn out in the 24-mile race sponsored by
Fidelity.

The six members per team race
started in Gun Bay in East End and each runner had to do four miles, handing
over the baton, until the last one finished at the Truman Bodden Sports
Complex.

 The Oceans 12 Beauties and Oceans 12 Beasts
were made up of the more serious runners on the island and were arranged so
that on paper they appeared evenly matched. A record 57 teams competed.

True to form, they finished first
and second, well ahead of Scott Brittain’s UBS team in third who easily took
out the corporate division. At least Brittain had the satisfaction of running
the two fastest legs. He did UBS’s second leg in 21 minutes 52 seconds and the
final leg in 22:32.

Marius Acker was the second fastest
in the field, running the last leg for his team in 23:39 to bring home the Ocean
12 Beauties in 2 hours 48 minutes and 48 seconds.

Acker’s team-mates were Chad
Gilbert, Beth Schreader, Mike McDonald, James Ogden and JP Henekon.

The Beasts consisted of Russell
Coleman, Mark Hogan, Ray Welds, Johan Heath, Jasper Mikkelsen and Chris Rose
and they finished in 2:30:07.

Roger Davies is a veteran runner
with the Hash House Harriers who helped organise the event. Davies, 65, was the
oldest runner and in the appropriately named team Grumpy Old Men. Don’t be
fooled by their name, they are still good athletes and finished in a very
respectable 3:21:00, beating many teams half their age.

Davies said: “It’s worth mentioning
that the Cayman Islands Athletic Association team of junior track athletes
called Hy-Tech Tigers did well to finish fourth overall, considering they are
sprinters, and four miles is a lot longer than they are used to running.

“They were given the third overall
trophies as the third team because UBS elected to take the trophy for first
corporate team. 

“We had a record turnout of 56
teams and, courtesy of Kenrick Williams, national track coach, were able to
finish the relay inside the stadium.

“We also had our Grumpy Old Men
team running for the 15th year and we did well to finish 21st considering we
had the oldest runner – me!

“Our average age was 56 despite
having to include a ‘junior’ of 44 at the last minute to replace a 61 year old
who was injured. There was also an all ladies team each of whom ran with their
children in strollers, and a two man team alternated each leg!

“Fidelity Bank deserves a lot of
praise, without whose sponsorship over the last few years the relay would have
disappeared off the calendar.”