Hawkins: Scottish athletics coming on leaps and bounds

Hawkins: Scottish athletics coming on leaps and bounds
By Sportsbeat

25/02/2017 at 21:16Updated

Rio Olympian Callum Hawkins insists athletics in Scotland is on the rise after he clinched the national cross-country crown, on Saturday.

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Hawkins, who finished ninth in the marathon on his Olympic debut, broke away on the first of three laps of the 10km course at Falkirk's Callendar Park.

The Scottish half-marathon record holder then eased to victory, taking the win in 33:34.00, ahead of Kris Jones and Lachlan Oates.

With fellow Scots Laura Muir and Andrew Butchart also impressing on the international scene, Muir most recently running to a new British and European indoor 1,000m record, Hawkins is confident his fellow countrymen and women can continue to flourish.

And that, he insists, can only have positive effects on the rest of the home nations as athletic achievements become the norm.

"We had 15 Scots at the Olympics. And that, at least in my lifetime, is unheard of," Hawkins said.

"And now Laura Andrew and myself - running the kind of times we are - it's just a snowball.

"Everyone is just bouncing off each other and it's just great for the sport in Scotland.”

Next up for Hawkins is the New York half marathon, in March, before turning his attentions to the London 2017 World Championships, where he already has a firm target.

"Hopefully I can improve on what I did in Rio," he added. Sportsbeat 2017