Former Banchory Academy pupil, Mar Orienteering Club, Deeside Runners and Banchory Stonehaven Athletic Club athlete Duncan Coombs (28) put up a very impressive performance in his first international road marathon at the weekend.
Better known over the years as a Scottish and GB international orienteer, since university Duncan has been living in Cambridge.
After spending 8 months travelling in 2014 he moved back to his university city of Edinburgh early in 2015 and is now reaping the benefits of the training groups available.
Second place in the tough Two Breweries hill race in October followed by 4th in the Edinburgh Mens 10k in 31.42 at the beginning of November showed that something special might be possible in Spain.
Competing in only his second road marathon Duncan’s plan was to run the first half in close to 76 minutes and go on from there.
Following that plan almost to the second he covered the first 13.1 miles in 75.50, running in 12th place approximately one minute behind his Edinburgh club team mate Murray Strain.
From there things went even better than Duncan could have hoped as he posted a negative split of 73.27 for the second half to move up to 6th by the finish in a hugely impressive 2.29.17.
The race was won by Kenyan John Kipkorir Mutai in 2:13:15 with compatriot Benson Waweru 2nd nd Abdelhadi El Mouazizfrom Morocco in 3rd.