Renault aims to motor to success while stellar field assembles for women's contest

Loch Ness

Neil Renault (handicap -4.4) will aim to go one better than last year when he competes in the Baxters River Ness 10km, tomorrow, which is shaping up to be an exciting race. The Edinburgh AC runner finished runner-up behind Inverclyde's Andy Douglas (handicap -3.5) in last year's event but Douglas is an absentee on this occasion.Renault has been in good form and has a best time this year of 30:40 set in the Wilne 10km at Draycott.

Former Scottish 800m and 1500m champion Mark Mitchell (handicap 1.7) could provide the surprise of the day, however, in what will be his first race since June 2014. The Forres Harriers club member, who was unlucky not to make the Scotland Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games team, is on the comeback trail after long term injury. Mitchell has a best 10km time of 30:33 which he recorded at Nairn three years ago.


Scottish 10,000m track champion Will Mackay (handicap -3.5) is another who should be involved at the head of the field although the Englishman has been struggling with an achilles injury in recent weeks.    Kenny Wilson (handicap -2.1) and Gordon Lennox (handicap -2.0) are among the others who will battle for a position on the podium.


Jenny Bannerman (handicap 1.6) hopes to have fully shaken off an upper body muscle injury in time to defend her title in the women's race. The north athlete was below par in the Scottish 10km championships at Sirling a fortnight ago, but still finished sixth, although she'll be aiming for a quicker run this weekend. Her current best of 35:15 was clocked at Grangemouth in April.


Bannerman faces some intriguing opposition led by former European junior 1500m champion Morag MacLarty (handicap 2.6) who is making a rare appearance over 10km. The 29 year-old Central AC runner has run one previous 10km race, recording 35:36 in the Scottish championships at Stirling two years ago. She won the Scottish 5,000m track title at Aberdeen Sports Village last month.


MacLarty and Bannerman will both have to look out for Shona McIntosh (handicap 1.1) who won the Scottish title at Stirling. The Hunters Bog Trotters club member has fond memories of Inverness, having won the Highland capital's half marathon in March.


Fiona Thompson (handicap 1.6) the 2013 10Km road Scottish champion, is also in the field as is former Scottish 1500m track champion Nicola Gauld (handicap 1.8) who was runner-up in 2012 and  2013.


Jenn Wetton (handicap 2.3) , who won the marathon last year in a women’s course record time, is on the road back to full fitness following an achilles injury, will also test herself.


The marathon and 10km are the premier events on the race day programme but the festival of running also includes other attractive events catering for a wide range of ages and levels of experience.


Race Director Malcolm Sutherland explained: "We try to offer something for all sectors of the running community. In addition to the marathon and 10km, which includes a Corporate Challenge for teams, we also have the Baxters River Ness 5Km fun run, and the Wee Nessie children's run which are always popular.


“There’s a superb atmosphere at the races with huge number of people turning out to watch and cheer on the competitors, particularly at the finish in BughtParkwhere the EventVillageis located. As usual there will be plenty of activities at the Village to keep everyone entertained.


“I’m looking forward to what promises to be yet another exciting day of action involving not only top class international and national athletes but also thousands of club and recreational runners all of whom will contribute to the carnival occasion.”


BaxtersRiverNess10K Course Records


Men: Amanuel Hagos (Shettleston) 29min 35secs (2008)

Women: Cathy Mutwa (Kenya)  33min 46sec (2006)



Entries have now closed for the marathon and 10Km but limited entries will be taken for the Baxters River Ness 5K and Wee Nessie children's run over the course of the race weekend.


For full information on this weekend’s event, including road closures visit: