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Ballantyne fails to upstage Joseph

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The long standing battle for Caribbean road racing supremacy between Vincentian Pamenos Ballantyne and St Lucian Zepherinus Joseph continued last Sunday in the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Half-Marathon in St. Lucia.{{more}}

Joseph, though, was the victor, as he romped to his fourth consecutive victory in event.

The 33-year-old Joseph won in one hour, seven minutes 44.14 seconds.

But it was one of Ballantyne’s worst returns, having captured nine titles, as he had almost patented the sub regional annual event from the mid 1990’s to 2005.

Ballantyne finished fourth in a time of one hour thirteen minutes.

Ballantyne last year had Joseph’s number, as he clipped him in the Caricom, Sandals and the Antigua Prime Minister’s 10 K races, while Joseph was behind him in the UWI SPEC Half Marathon. Ballantyne finished fourth and Joseph, fifth.

Ballantyne told SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday that he blamed his relatively innocuous showing in last Sunday’s race to a niggling pain in his left hamstring that slowed him down.

Providing Joseph with the stiffest challenge was Trinidad and Tobago’s Curtis Cox, who clocked one hour eight minutes, 05.98 seconds.

Chasing down Cox was St. Lucian Victor Ledger, who timed one hour eight minutes, 20.27 seconds.

Christine Regis, of Trinidad and Tobago, won the women’s race in one hour, thirty five minutes 13 seconds.

Not daunted by the loss, Ballantyne said that he will be soon back on the roads, as he heads to Guyana, October 26, to take part in a 10K race there, before heading back north to Trinidad and Tobago, to take aim at the UWISPEC Half Marathon set for November 2.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines was also to have been represented by Maxroy Forbes, but he did not make the trip, because of work related bureaucracy.

Last Sunday’s race started at Pigeon Point in the north of the island, and finished at the Mindoo Phillip Park in capital Castries.

A total of 24 runners faced the starters and 20 completed the distance.

Both winners, male and female, collected a wining prize of US$1,000. (RT)