Island race attracts a record field of True Grits and Wimps

PUBLISHED : Monday, 10 April, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 10 April, 2006, 12:00am

A record field of more than 160 runners took part in the annual Round the Island Time Trial at Wong Nai Chung Gap yesterday.

The field was separated into True Grit runners - those who ran the 65-kilometre, figure-of-eight lap of Hong Kong Island on their own - and the Wimps category, in which two runners shared the burden and ran about half the course each.

The event was as much about tactics as speed, with the finish line open only from 2pm to 4pm, meaning runners had to measure their pace carefully.

Fong Tak-shun, competing in the men's veteran two category, posted the fastest time of six hours and 20 minutes in the True Grit section, slightly ahead of Kwok Kar-fai, who won the men's open category in 6:21.

Patrick Ford won the men's veteran one category and came third overall in 6:23.

Stella Ng reached the finish first in the ladies veteran two category in exactly eight hours. Wiwen Leung came home second in 8:30, while Leung Oi-yim placed third overall in 8:33.

Keith Chan and Choi Wing-chung clocked a speedy 5:22 in the men's Wimp category, while Lucinda Lo and Raymond Li headed the mixed category in 6:24.

Alice Rosen and Catherine Leonard had a combined time of 6:43 to be the first and only all female pair to finish the gruelling course.

South African Rob Hart failed to find a human partner for the event so he ran the the 33km second section in 3:40 with his seven-year-old Jack Russell terrier, Lucy, for company.

'I think Lucy enjoyed it more than I did. She certainly had more energy at the end than me,' said Hart, a 34-year-old equity analyst.