Due to the Sri Chinmoy Multi-Sport Classic being held on the Canberra Day Long Weekend this year, the traditional Canberra Day 10km & 4km Fun-Runs were moved to Sunday 31 March, a less-than-ideal choice as it turned out due to several other significant events also happening about town on this day.
So it was a smaller-than-usual field who gathered on a cooler-than-usual morning with a little less-than-usual excitement and anticipation in the air.
The low-key atmosphere did not deter Jeff Grey however, who had come to the 10km race this morning with a focus and a goal: the 15-year-old Male 50-59 Course Record. Jeff ran the race of the day to convincingly claim the new best time of 39:03, to further consolidate his growing reputation as one of Canberra’s outstanding and best-performing veteran runners of all time.
A few minutes ahead of Jeff, Jonathan Moore had claimed the outright win in the 10km race with a fine 35:51, edging ahead of Aston Duncan (35:58) and Ben Crabb (36:14). Behind Jeff’s record-breaking performance, the race in the Male 50-59 was for the minor placings, with Mark Duncanson taking 2nd in 43:38 from Kim Houghton’s 44:07. Keith Bennett took home the main trophy in the Male 60-69 with 47:25; while Peter Gentry was fastest of the Male 70 and Over brigade in 1:05:10.
The women’s 10km race also proved a tight contest, with Ellie Barrett (42:51) outlasting a challenge from Natty Beck’s 42:59, and Amanda Kennedy taking the final podium placing in 43:40. Debra Kay was fastest of the Female 50-59 in 49:50 from Mayumi Takeuchi’s 54:47 and Sharon Humphreys – who accidentally ran an additional lap around Museum Point – clocking in at 1:00:34.
The top 5 placings in the 4km race this morning were 3 Boys Under 17 and 2 Girls Under 13. Riley Whatman (16:00) was the outright winner, from his brother Angus Whatman (17:31). 3rd overall and 1st Girl Under 13 went to the flying Jemma Wilson in 17:32, followed by the 3rd Boy Under 17, Jayden Alderman in 18:09 and 2nd Girl Under 13, Hannah Quispes with 18:55. Hugh Radford took out the Boys Under 13 in 19:00, followed closely by Flynn Duncan (19:20) and Owen Duncanson (19:35). Melinda Lee won the Girls Under 17 division with 44:37. Among the adults, Severine Bernard took out the Female 17 and Over category in 21:27; and Jose Quispes Garay the Male 17 and Over with 22:32.
Congratulations to all who participated and all who volunteered their services to help make this morning so enjoyable and fulfilling. This race will return to its traditional home of Canberra Day in 2020!