Hard work pays off for Brown, Watson
Raymond Graham, Gleaner Writer
Defending male champion Kirk Brown and Mandeville 7K winner, Shanieke Watson of Holmwood Technical, had to dig deep to top the respective male and female categories at Sunday's second event in the Burger King Grand Prix Series, the Portmore 10K.
Each earned a cash prize of $15,000 for winning overall.
Brown, who was runners-up in 2010, made it a back-to-back win as he stopped the clock at 31 minutes, 20 seconds to defeat his good friend, Rupert Green, who clocked 31:32, with Gregory McKenzie third in 32:00.
Brown had to find an extra gear in the final 400 metres to overtake Green, who led for the greater part of the way. After improving on last year's winning time (31:30), Brown, who competed in a half marathon overseas recently, was very pleased with his effort.
"It was not easy winning today as I am a bit tired coming off a half marathon two weeks ago in Trinidad and I felt it in my legs which were a bit weak. I was really pushed by Green,but it is great to know that I won and defended my title successfully," said Brown, who is hoping to compete regularly overseas.
Like she did in Mandeville a few weeks ago, Watson registered another impressive win, as she led from start to finish, covering the course in 39 minutes.
Her Holmwood teammate, Lisa Buchanan, finished second in 39:45, with Vere Technical's Britney Dixon copping third in 39:57.
Watson, who looks set to be crowned Grand Prix champion, as she has 20 points with one race to go, spoke about her dominant performance.
"It was a very challenging race, but I used other persons to motivate me and I used my teammates to do this, and I was not surprised that I won that easily, as I have a motto that says 'train hard and you win easy' and that is what I have been doing all season," she said.
Holmwood look set to dethrone Edwin Allen from the female Grand Prix team title, which carries a cash prize of $60,000. Like Mandeville, they were the top female team. Vere Technical were second, while Hydel - second in Mandeville - were third. Hydel are still second overall, while Edwin Allen dropped to fifth.
Among the boys, Edwin Allen came out on top, ahead of St Jago. Bellefield finished third and Holmwood fourth.
The third and final meet in the Burger King Grand Prix Series - the Reggae Marathon and 10K - takes place in Negril on December 6.