Edinburgh Athletic Club runners enjoy QA5K race

No fewer than 16 Edinburgh Athletic Club runners made the journey over the Queensferry Crossing to compete in the QA 5K road race, held recently at the Queen Anne school in Dunfermline.

This popular event is fast establishing itself as one of the quickest 5K races on the athletics calendar. It features five separate races seeded by predicted finish time, resulting in highly competitive racing.

The flat and fast seven-lap course, good weather on the night, and excellent support on the race route led to some excellent results from Edinburgh Athletic Club members. Race 1 saw two of Edinburgh Athletic Club’s ladies, Leanne Calder and Sinéad Gallagher, compete well and finish in 20:43 and 23:30 respectively.

Gavin Phillip was well under the 20-minute barrier in Race 2, while in Race 3 Neil Jack impressed with a 16:39 clocking as he continues his return from long-term injury. Kevin Hamilton, Michael Fullerton, Mark Thornton-Smith, Matthew Davies, Sean Eng and Iain Craven all finished in close proximity in Race 3, in low-to-mid-17-minute times, with less than 30 seconds between the six of them. In Race 4, Max Meres got close to a sub-16 time, with the ever-consistent Iain Macdonald finishing in 16:47. Race 5 saw Stuart Johnston clock 15:46, just pipping clubmate Leon Johnson by five seconds. Iain Whitaker recorded 15:07 for 8th overall, and John Lenehan dipped under the 15-minute barrier with a 14:57 clocking for 5th overall.

Edinburgh AC's Leanne Calder, Sinéad Gallagher and Gavin Phillip took part in the QA5K

The fastest male finisher was Paralympic champion Owen Millar MBE of Fife Athletic Club, who scorched to a 14:38 time. Fastest female was Annabel Simpson, also of Fife Athletic Club, who blitzed to a 15:54 time. Both Fife athletes clinched new course records.

The format of the event meant that prior to and after each individual race, runners were able to line the course and support their friends and clubmates in other races, which led to an incredible atmosphere on the night.

Edinburgh Athletic Club’s Sinéad Gallagher commented: “It was a really fun event. I was pleased with my time, even though now my legs are knackered. We don’t often get the chance to do a race and then watch four other races, so I really enjoyed being able to cheer on my clubmates.”

Race organiser Dan Monaghan of PH Racing Club was delighted with how the event went, saying: “There really was some top-class running across all five races. It’s simple, no-frills racing, but the flat lapped course seems to work well and the feedback has been really good. We had so many new personal best times, and that’s what we all want to see. A massive well done to all the runners and we will see everyone again next year.”