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Still all to play for in 151st New Year Sprint

Shane Fenton reports from Meadowmill Sports Centre

It's still all to play for in the 151st New Year Sprint following the running of the heats at a murky Meadowmill Sports Arena on Monday morning.

It may have been the lowest entry for a number of years but this was made up for with an excellent turn out of runners with few non starters.

Fastest up was Central AC's Ian Horsburgh who, if to go on and take the £5000 first prize at Mussulburgh Racecourse on New Years Day would be the first veteran winner since Tony Bowman 13 years ago. Horsburgh won his heat in 11.30 seconds from a start of 10.25 metres. This heat was one of the later heats which was  run in calmer conditions than the earlier heats which took place in a stiff breeze.

Another duo to catch the eye was Krishawn Aitken, Kilbarchan AC and  Kyle McLean, Giffnock who were given the same time of 11.37 seconds in heat 2.

Stacey Downie Edinburgh AC also recorded an impressive time of 11.41 in winning heat 3. Murray Blair Lasswade AC who is another fancied runner won heat 8 in 11.42, this heat saw last years winner Greg Kelly East Kilbride AC  go out. The latter club however will be double handed in the x ties with both the winner from two years ago Calum McWilliam progress as a fastest loser along with heat 5 winner Iain McEwan who was the victor in heat 5 in11.53. Heat 4 saw Greg Turnbull Jedburgh power to victory in windy conditions in heat 4 recording 11.55 with Scott Hannaway, Greenock winning heat 7 in the slowest of the heat winners in 11.73.

Making it a trio of females in the x ties is Sarah Malone Edinburgh AC who won heat 1 in 11.52 and Brodie Cowan Jedburgh who went through as a fastest loser.

The 4 x ties at Musselburgh Racecourse will all be run off following the conclusion of the first horse race at 12,30pm. The final which will be covered by ITV Racing will take place after the 2.15 horse race.

In the supporting events there was a thrilling finish to the Open 200 metres handicap with Cameron Lindsay, Kelso 20.07 edging out last years winner Andrea Goodman Dundee Hawkhill 20.12 with Scott Hannaway Greenock pipping Stewart Clark Stonehaven for third place.

Andrea Goodman also had to settle for second place in the Women's 90 metres handicap where victory went to Stacey Downie, Edinburgh AC who stopped the watch at 9.37 seconds.This was Stacey's second triumph in this race. Brodie Cowan Jedburgh took third place.

The Veterans 90 metres saw Cameron Smith Central AC retain his title winning in 9.48 from John Fleming Kelso 9.54 and Tommy Finkle Jedburgh 9.65.

There was an impressive run from Craig Sowerby Seaton AC who spreadeagled the field from the 130m mark to win the Open 800 metres handicap in a quick 1;44.25, equally impressive was last years winner Ewan Dyer Pitreavie AC who finished strongly to take second place ahead of David Allan Clydesda;e AC close home.

There was some good running in the Youth races with the youngsters having to contend with he worst of the conditions in the opening 90 metres handicap. Victory went to Callum Gladwin Harmeny AC in 9.74 with Borders duo Ava Lees TLJT and Zoe Blair Jedburgh filling the minor places. A penalty of 8 metres didn't stop young Gladwin from landing the sprint double in the 200 metres [13-15] on this occasion Evie Renwick TLJT was runner up and Zoe Blair third.

In the [9-12] race Ava Lees TLJT stayed on strongly to hold off Eloise Scott Lasswade AC and Josh Landers TLJT. There was a disappointing turn out of only 4 runners in the Youth 800 metres where their was a Lasswade AC 1 - 2 with Alistair Scott holding off Eloise Scott to win in 1:57.78. Matty Fleming Kelso finished in third place with Kate McKay Leithenburn in fourth.

Published: 2019-12-30 21:32:54