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Bakhraiba triumphs in cross-country race

Seventy-three runners took part in the annual mid-season ending cross-country race in the Jeddah Road Runners calendar of events recently in the north of Jeddah, sponsored jointly by Suntop and Carrefour.
In keeping with tradition, as this is always a ‘cross-country’ event, the course comprised two laps to test the strength of the legs on varied terrain (hard and soft sand), and make up for the absence of any major hills. The main race of two laps (7 kms.) attracted 43 runners; another 30 runners completed one lap covering half the distance (3.5kms).
Conditions were ideal for a late afternoon start, and temperatures were nearly perfect for some good performances.
Last year’s third-placed finisher, Bakhraiba, improved on his previous time by over a minute, winning comfortably from Assiri by 16 secs.
Junior Al Kaff, improved his time by an even larger margin than in 2011, by nearly 5 minutes, finishing third overall. Based on this performance, he has the potential to be club champion in the short-term future.
There were several close finishes to excite the spectators: Ahdal, Rasheed, Robito and Mohagab, all finished within 18 seconds; K. Oloffson pipping Magalong by a second at the finish line as did E. Olofsson from Goscioco.
Al Harbi edged Elliston by a few seconds. In the ladies, the Arab News own staff, S. Roth, comfortably won, finishing a very creditable eighth position overall.
Guiterez, Zamora and Shouaib brought up the rear, to a well-earned round of applause from the group. Club member Awni won the one-lap race, from Yamani, Hawsawi, and Alsubhi.
The club committee thanked Binzagr CO-RO and Carrefour for their excellent support for the running community, and for the product and give-aways that were given to all the runners.
Overall winner: Bakhraiba (28.20)
Open category: Assiri (28.36); Dehwah (30.42); Saideya (33.16)
Veterans category: Bucher (34.34); Messum (36.21); Albert (38.40)
Masters category: Zeibnan (33.13); McIvor (36.16); Alkhaibari (40.14)
Seniors: 1st Malloch (40.23)
Ladies: Roth (35.26); 2nd K. Olofsson (44.46); Elliston (45.12)
Juniors: Al Kaff (29.44); E. Olofsson (49.53); Gosioco (49.54)