INVERCLYDE Athletic Club’s Ben Potrykus took victory in a close-fought battle at the inaugural Flat ‘N Fast 5K in Linlithgow.

Ben, who competed at the British Athletics Championships in the 5,000 metres earlier this year, took on a five-lap road race course at the West Lothian Cycle Circuit, coming into the last lap in a pack of four.

Corstorphine’s Tom Martyn went with the pace of the Inverclyde runner with a lap to go, opening a gap of a few seconds to Livingston’s Andrew McGill and Ross Good of Giffnock North.

Martyn went early on the final lap, taking the lead into the hairpin, but the speed of Potrykus saw him regain first place.

Despite lightning finishes from McGill and Good who chased him down into the straight, Potrykus crossed the line in 14min 31sec, one second in front of McGill and Good, who completed the podium, with Martyn in fourth in 14:33.

Potrykus said afterwards to race organisers Stride Athletics: “That was an honest hard race.

“I got around the bend and thought to use the speed and I knew they were coming with 50 metres out from the line, but I held my form and I’m happy.

“The course had a lot of bends in there that makes it quite technical, but that’s good because it gives it a proper racing element.”

Teammate Ryan Gray set a new personal best in the same race to finish ninth, but agonisingly missed breaking the 15-minute barrier.

With a strong final lap, Ryan was able to consolidate his top ten position, but was less than a second away from the sought after target, finishing in 15:00.6.

Despite the near miss, the Port Glasgow runner was still able to smash his best by 33 seconds.