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SHANE FENTON reports from the Wallace Monument

For the first time in a few years the weather played the game and the 167th Bridge of Allan Highland Games enjoyed a dry and at times sunny afternoon.

The Strathallan Meeting is widely regarded as the leading athletics meeting on the Games circuit and as ever attracted good fields for the running , jumping and heavy events.

The £600 which goes to the winner of the Open 90 metres handicap is the biggest prize on offer on the circuit. The race was run off in six heats with the final producing a breathtaking finish. It looked as though front marker Colin Christie was going to hold on for victory as he led with a couple of strides remaining. In the end however he had to settle for 4th place with victory going to Euan Urquhart,VP Glasgow who was given the decision over the previous weeks St Andrews winner Ryan Elliot,Hawick and Kieran Halliday,Cental AC. It was a good day for the winner Urquhart who also won both the Long and Triple Jump competitions, in 2017 he won the 200 metres handicap.

This years 200 metres saw victory go to Cameron Clamp,TLJT who edged home ahead of Charlie Carstairs,Lasswade AC and Calum McWilliam,East Kilbride AC.

The same trio were all in the frame in an 18 runner 400 metres handicap, with this time Carstairs repeating his win from St Andrews 7 days prior with McWilliam adjudged to have inched out Clamp for 2nd place.

The Invitation 90 metres was won by Ben Coates, Oban from Liam Wood, East Kilbride AC and Douglas Young,Kelso.

Another runner to retain his title was Willie Bates,Tullibody in the 800 metres handicap as he produced his best run of the season to come home ahead of David Allan,Clydesdale AC and Matthew McKenna,Cambuslang. The latter rewarded each way backers in the 1600 metres where he finished runner up to Fraser Logan,Belgrave with backmarker Kobe Stevens,Moorfoot in 3rd place.

It's not often the 3200 metres produces one of the races of the day , that was certainly the case on this occasion, it brought back memories of the 1973 Grand National when Crisp led all the way only to be collared in the last stride by Red Rum. That was the scenario in an epic last lap between namesakes Sheena Logan,Fife AC and Fraser Logan, At the bell Sheena who had led for almost all of the race was still in front by around 50 metres from Fraser, Sheena was lifted all the way around the track by the big crowd as they urged her to hold on as Fraser made relentless headway. Off the final bend the gap was down to a few metres and in the shadow of the winning post Fraser snatched the win which had the crowd on their feet giving both runners a standing ovation.

As ever the Youth races were split into two age groups, Borders athletes won both the 90 metres races, The 9-12 years race was won by Josh Landers,Walkerburn from Lewis Fleming,Kelso and Lily Simon,Pitreavie AC. Shelley Focjick,Jedburgh took the tape in the 13-15 category from Liam Ward,East Kilbride AC and Kyle McFarlane,Pitreavie AC.The latter was also third in the 200 metres which was won by Liam Wood from Ruaridh Elder,Alloa. Erin McFarlane,Pitreavie AC was the victor in the junior 200m from Lewis Fleming and Josh Landers.Jason Whiye,TLJT and Kyle McFarlane were the respective winners of the 400 metres youth races.

Hannah Steel,Lothian RC retained the 13-15 800 metres with Lily Simon who was winning her first race on the circuit the victor in the 9-12 years race.

Stewart Burke,Limekilns had a good day in the cycling events winning three of the four races on the programme. Burke won the 1600 metres and 3200 metres handicaps as well as the Deil tak the Hindmost. He was thwarted for the clean sweep by Paul Anderson,Perth who was the victor in the opening 800 metres handicap.Ryan Kier,Paul Gallacher,Ian Hepburn,Dave Mathieson and Ian Grant filled the minor placings.

Euan Urquhart won both the Long and Triple Jump, Ben Coates was runner up in the long jump with Ewan Bradley in third. Caotes was then 3rd in the triple jump in which Ryan Morgan ,Essex was second.

With the British title up for grabs it was no surprise to see all the top heavy event competitors in the country in action, emerging as the overall winner was Lukasz Wenta,East Kilbride.Full heavy events results to follow.

Published: 2018-08-05 22:15:55