Barbadian Orin Josiah did well to place third, but Curtis Cox of Trinidad and Tobago ruled the road early this morning by winning the 2015 Run Barbados Marathon.
It was around 5 a.m. when 35 runners took off from the Bay Street Esplanade, taking part in two races – the half and full marathon. At the end of the shorter race, Nicholas Fernandez of France was again victorious, having won yesterday’s Men’s 10k race.
Through a translator, the 29-year-old Frenchman said he was very satisfied with his first Run Barbados outing. The Frenchman give an impressive run of 1:15.28 and was a comfortable three minutes clear of St Lucian Michael Biscette, who was second with 1:18.26 ahead of Francois Roussas of Martinique with 1:21.10 for third.
“I am satisfied with my results. The conditions were slippery, but otherwise I did well and I will be back next year because this was a nice experience for me,” said the 2016 Rio Olympics qualifier.
Jessica Draskau-Peterson also came back strong this morning after winning the Women’s 10k yesterday in cpnvincing style. Today, she completed her half marathon race in a time of 1:29.35 to beat out Christine Regis of Trinidad and Tobago, who came in at 1:41.43, and Rachel Atkinson of Barbados, who finished in a time of 1:46.43.
However, the king of the road this morning was Cox, who said he was not bothered about his time of 2:55:55. His aim was simply to win, after losing out on the top position at Run Barbados in 2012 and 2013.
“My focus was just to win. I was not focused on time and when I turned the six mile mark I saw the second guy was way behind so I paced myself,” he explained to reporters.
Admittedly, “the course was difficult” for Cox, but he said he just remained focus and kept up his pace knowing that needed to run over the hill at Spring Garden twice, which “is not easy”.
Having achieved his race objective, Cox is already looking ahead to next year. And though happy that the Run Barbados event has returned, he would like to see an increase in prize money.
“The last time I ran here first prize was like three thousand US and today it is five hundred and that is a big drop. I would push for the return, but with better prizes because I would not defend my title with that type of prize,” said the 47-year-old, who ran two laps starting from Bay Street over the Swing Bridge in Bridgetown, pass Kensington Oval, up Spring Garden Highway to Payne’s Bay with no competition what so ever.
He was followed home by compatriot Neil Bourne in a time of 3:11:45. Naim Combo of France had to settle for fourth spot with a time of 3:37.46, while 3:39.15 earned Mark Matyazic of the United States fifth position.
The women ran the same route as the men and Amy Chalk of the United Kingdom, who has been out of Run Barbados for a while, returned with a bang.
“I enjoyed it and obviously very different this year with the course change but I think it is a fantastic idea with so much more support and resources and the few stations were well supported with water, drinks catered for this year so it is amazing,” she said of the event.
This is her fourth win at Run Barbados marathon, following success in 2005, 2007 and 2008.
“I thoroughly enjoyed it. Predominantly that is where my love is really, marathon, I love to do [it] and obviously had three wins here in the past. Not getting any younger as I found out here today. I came here in the early nineties as a youngster to run the ten kilometre and ever since then, as my career sort of progressed to an international level in the marathon, that is where my support and performance lies,” said the 40-year-old, who is not sure whether she will return next year.
She was greeted at the finish line by her daughter Amelia Chalk who was appeared to be very pleased with her mom’s time of 3:12.46. Chalk’s compatriot Sarah Williams was second with 3:44.45, beating out Kim Golf who finished on 3:45.50. Marlo Hunte from Barbados was fourth with 3:50.18.