Sri Chinmoy Sydney Series 2019, race 4: Iron Cove Half-Marathon, 7km & 4km runs, Sunday 9 June 2019
Like listening to rain on a tin roof or gazing into a camp fire, there is a deep allure and beauty in going around in circles. As the terms of our lives – diurnal and seasonal – are formed by the revolutions of our planet, so there is a cosmic inevitability and destiny about our coming and going and going and coming, our always returning to our starting point. Always returning, yet always changed. Ever the same, and ever new. In this sense The Bay Run – the course used for the Sri Chinmoy Iron Cove races – is a snapshot, a microcosm of the inner and outer journeys of our lives. Every lap may be the same course, yet every lap presents a fresh challenge, a unique quest and a new discovery.
The Run of the Day award today goes to a runner who has participated in this event as many times as anyone – the sandal-shod meteor himself, Phil Balnave – who today broke the long-standing Male 50-59 course record for the Half-Marathon, with his new mark of 1:20:47 – which also placed him 4th outright. The clear overall winner was Pat Hennessy with an excellent run of 1:16:48, ahead of the sprightly Thales Henrique Da Silva Souza in 1:18:43, pursued home by Tim Broxup’s 1:19:10.
Following Phil in the Male 50-59 were Masahiko Kato with 1:31:47 and Alija Kajan who ran 1:35:45. The Male 60-69 category was taken out in glorious style by a flying Craig Saphin in 1:29:56; while Peter Allan owned the Male 70 and Over with his 2:23:19.
Julie Kenny was fastest of the women today with a fine run of 1:40:32, ahead of an extremely close race for 2nd and 3rd between Yanyan Jia in 1:42:55 just edging Pauline Nicot’s 1:42:57. Lisa Bennett was the winner of the Female 50-59 in 1:46:14; and Veronica Hopkins the Female 60-69 with 2:33:41.
The one-lap 7km race saw an extraordinary finish with the first 2 females, after running neck and neck for almost the whole way, storming the field to taking the race outright – Mercy Nathanael’s 26:35 prevailing over Davina Smith’s 26:42 only in the finishing straight. Mel Selby claimed 3rd placing in the women’s race with 28:11. Roisin Boyle was the fastest among the Female 50-59s with 34:08 ahead of Tracey O’Donnell in 36:01; while Gladys Amestoy won an absorbing tussle to take out the Female 60-69 in 39:14 not far in front of Merridy O’Donnell’s 40:54.
While the first two placings went to the women, only 36 seconds separated the next 6 men. Winning the Male Under 50s with a breezy 26:59 was Jack Wedgwood, not far ahead of Marc Person’s 27:04 and Robert Brown with 27:11. The Male 50-59 was taken out by David Heazlett with 30:38, ahead of Jack’s father Mark Wedgwood in 31:02. Marc Jarman won the Male 60-69 in 34:19, while Ron Briggs made the most of his time on the track today to record a win in the Male 70 and Over with 1:19:58.
Martin Leerberg ran the 4km race in another dimension from most of the rest of the field, winning outright and only missing the Boys Under 17 course record by a few seconds with his superb run of 13:57. Next home was Oliver Byrne in 15:59, just ahead of 1st placed Boys Under 13, Dashiell Bark with 16:23, Girls Under 13 winner Amber Kusano in 16:28 and her sister Sophia Kusano 1st out the Girls Under 17 with 16:31. Victoria Dixon was the premier Female 17 and Over with 17:00; while Mark Mikulandra was fastest among the Male 17 and Over in 20:14.