The Sri Chinmoy measured 10km Recreational Running Course, starting and finishing from the Acton (former) Ferry Terminal, has been the staple venue for Sri Chinmoy Fun-Runs in Canberra since 1984. With construction works taking over the area this month for the ongoing Acton Waterfront development, an alternative course had to be procured for the first time in 36 years.
If this were any other city in the world, finding a stand-in course at short notice might have been a real challenge: in Canberra however, not only were several excellent options readily available – when it was discovered that the public toilet block at the proposed new start location was out of order the day before the race, Canberra’s stacked deck of superb locations and facilities ensured another perfect setting was already waiting in the wings nearby.
Due to the 10km field heading off in waves, and all the women starting first, the men faced an effective 5 minute handicap – providing a fascinating race in itself. The fastest man – Matthew Robbie with a fine 34:21 – still wasn’t able to reel in the floating Katie Porra, whose 38:56 led home the entire field.
Next after Katie in the Female Under 50 was the fabulous Hannah Walmsley with 41:28, followed by an impressive 43:15 from Ainsley Pahljina. Debra Kay was forerunner for the Female 50-59 with her fine 51:16, from Deborah Bremer’s 56:16 and Vanessa Palmer in 1:01:48. It seems the older the women got in this race, the better their performances, as Clare Wall won the Female 60-69 with an outstanding 52:21, from Robyn McClelland’s excellent 57:03 while Rasa Pes – visiting form Sydney – contributed a solid 1:00:15. The run of the day across all categories was unquestionably a fleet-of-foot 54:39 from the phenomenal Susan Archer to win the Female 70 and Over!
Following Matthew home in the men’s race came a steady stream of runners, starting with 2nd placed Miles Waring in 35:01, from Daniel Carson’s 35:28. In the Male 50-59, it was Andrew Tully’s superb 37:27 claiming the largest trophy, from Steve Rohan-Jones’ 38:11 and Matt Hills with 39:30. Another visitor from Sydney seeking the greener racing pastures of Canberra, Ron Schwebel showed wonderful form to take out the Male 60-69 in 44:45 from local cult icon Trevor Jacobs’ 47:44 and Keith Bennett’s 49:48. A record 6 runners filled the Male 70 and Over category, with the legendary Jim White triumphant with 1:00:32, though only barely ahead of Paul Archer’s 1:00:46.
Dave Hardwicke backed up from his outstanding 2nd placing in the recent Sri Chinmoy Canberra Trail 100km, to win this morning’s 4km ‘sprint’ event in an excellent 15:44, ahead of 1st placed Boys Under 17, Ryan Cuzner’s 16:22 and winner of the Boys Under 13, Daniel Randall with 16:43. First female home was Jordynne Rauter with her excellent 17:21, leading home Girls Under 13 winner Lara McClelland with 20:46, and 1st placed Girls Under 17 Hannah Quispes’ 22:04.
Due to the short timeframe to secure this alternate course, the route was not measured to the standard of certification – hence times cannot be recognised as ‘official’ or as course records for this occasion.