The British Bulldogs were the heavy favourites for the Cross Island Relay, Cayman’s longest running road race, and although they won comfortably in the end, it was never easy.
On paper the Bulldogs had the strongest team with Conrad Proud starting, then Mark Hogan, then Russell Coleman, with Dave Shibli running the fourth leg, followed by James Ogden and Derek Larner finishing.
It started at 6am in Gun Bay, East End, on Sunday and finished at Smith’s Cove, outside the home of AL Thompson, who was one of the sponsors. Main sponsors were Fidelity, and it was organised by the Hash House Harriers. On a lovely, sunny day record numbers came out and fast times were recorded despite the heat toward the end.
Eighty-one teams participated, which is a great improvement over last year’s turn out of 56 and goes to show how popular road running is becoming in Cayman and how high the fitness levels are getting.
This year’s race was highly contested as the lead switched between Beat the Brits and the Bulldogs throughout the event. Beat the Brits took the lead after the first leg, followed by Galloping Genesis and the British Bulldogs.
Leg 2 saw Hogan charge into the lead only to see Marius Acker record the fastest leg of the event to take the lead back on leg 3. UBS moved into third place after the second leg and remained safely there after the third. Leg 4 saw Proud take back the lead for the British Bulldogs as he passed Hayden Isbister. The Bulldogs held onto the lead during the fifth leg and at the beginning of leg 6 the Bulldogs had a 2 minute, 2 second lead on Beat the Brits.
It was the challenge taken on by Mike Ridsdale for Beat the Brits to try to make up the deficit on the final four mile leg, but Larner ran brilliantly to keep the Bulldogs ahead for the overall win in a time of 2 hours, 26 minutes and 2 seconds.
Beat the Brits recorded 2:27:57 and UBS – which included the welcome return of previously injured Scott Brittain – were the first in the corporate division in 2:34:19. Hy-Tech +1 were fourth in 2:49:00, brought home by Carl Grant. Second fastest corporate team were PWC Super Six with a time of 2:58:57, and in third place were Galloping Genesis in 2:59:10.
In the all-female team division, Mums on the Run finished first in 3:21:57, second were Changes Fitness in 3:22:06 and third were Forty and Fabulous in 3:22:26.
The Hash House Harriers thanked all the volunteers who assisted with this event and expressed appreciation to Fidelity for sponsoring the event. The Hash runs every Monday evening starting at 5:30 at different locations throughout the island each week.
Anyone interested in running with the Hash can find the schedule on www.caymanhash.com Full results are on www.caymanhash.com