Inverness athlete claims gold medal after win at Stirlong 10k
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Jenny Bannerman bounced back from a summer of illness to win her first Scottish national title at Sunday's City of Stirling 10K.
She clinched victory with a time of 35 minutes and 33 seconds.
It follows a long recovery from a post-viral episode and a further infection which saw her on antibiotics until Friday evening.
But after a race-long battle with her Scotland team mate Jennifer Wetton of Central AC, the Inverness runner threw one final effort into the last kilometre to win the title by three seconds.
Bannerman (33) already had Scottish silver medals at 5K, 10K and 10 miles along with 10K bronze, but individual gold had eluded her until now.
"An individual Scottish gold was the main thing that had been missing from what I'd done in 15 years of competing on the road," she said.
"So it feels just so good to get this one.
"I realise that I don't have too many years left at my peak.
"There were times back in July when I wasn't well enough to run at all that I really wondered if I would ever compete again, so there was a lot on this race.
"It's been a long, slow recovery from whatever that virus was - it may or may not have been Long Covid - and there's still a little bit to go so a separate infection last week was the last thing I needed.
"I've got to say that I felt really grim on the last k but I just had to dig in because I wanted that gold medal so much."
Bannerman, who also has five international appearances for Scotland, was joined at the top of the podium by double Olympic 5000m finalist Andrew Butchart of host club Central AC who took the men's title in 29:06.
Fast improving David McColl of Inverness set a big personal best of 36:14 in the men's race.
On Saturday, a team of four girls from Inverness Harriers won the under 17 Scottish 4 x 100m title in a fast time of 49.62 seconds.
Marvelous Igbinidu, Stroma Fraser, Amy Mustarde and Abbie Harrison cruised through their heat in 50.16 and found a further half second in the final to take the title by three metres from Victoria Park/City of Glasgow with Law and District in third place.