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BALLANTYNE GETS REVENGE

BALLANTYNE GETS REVENGE

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Pamenos Ballantyne backed himself to win the Barbados Marathon of the Run Barbados Series, and this he did by letting his feet do the talking.

Ballantyne, following his triumph in the Anguilla Half Marathon, the weekend before, told SEARCHLIGHT that he was going to win the Barbados event, which was double the distance.{{more}}

Last Sunday, he outran the field in the 26.2 mile road race, staged in pre-dawn to early morning, to put his tally of wins in the yearly exercise to three.

Ballantyne clocked 2hrs 25 mins 25 secs.

He brushed aside Keynan Samuel Nurithi into second place.

The African was more than two minutes behind Ballantyne in 2 hrs 27 mins 40 secs.

But Ballantyne’s greatest delight was the defeat of last year’s winner St. Lucian Victor Ledger. The defending champion, and winner of three titles, secured in 2004, 2006 and 2007, Ledger docked in third, in 2 hrs 29 mins 58 secs.

Speaking to SEARCHLIGHT last Tuesday morning, Ballantyne said that prior to Sunday’s race; Ledger was mouthing his confidence of making the hat trick and win number four.

“I knew he (Ledger) was fit so I took it easy on the first part of the race; I was not going hard,” Ballantyne recollected.

Ballantyne recalled that he used the early morning cool conditions to good advantage, pacing himself well.

“I knew that the second half of my race is always faster so I stepped up on them”, Ballantyne, the leading distance runner in the region for the past ten years said.

The win made Ballantyne the recipient of US $3,750.

It was an advanced birthday gift for Ballantyne who celebrated his 35th birthday on Tuesday, December 9.

Last year, Ballantyne finished fifth, clocking 2 hrs 33 mins 32 secs.

Ballantyne, in the prime of his career, took the event in 1998 and 1999.

He also has five wins in the Half Marathon of the series.

He thanked Winston Carter of the Barbados Tourism Board Authority for his participation in the marathon.

Ballantyne said that Carter facilitated special dispensation for him in sourcing funds for his travel and accommodation, a privilege that is only extended to the defending champions.

The Half Marathon event this year was won by Keynan Robert Kirotich Letting, who also copped the 10K race.

Like Letting, Wendy Nicholls of England added the Half Marathon to her 10K win the day before.

British citizen Amy Chalk made it two in a row in the women’s marathon. Her time of 3 hrs 2 mins 11 secs, saw her finishing ninth overall.

Ballantyne said that the Barbados race was his last for 2008, and stated that he will use the next two months to prepare fully for the Clico Trinidad and Tobago Marathon early in 2009.

A seven time winner of the Trinidad and Tobago marquis race, standing at the winner’s podium has eluded Ballantyne since 2004.(RT)

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