Clear sunny skies greeted an increased field of more than 500 runners who took up the challenge of participating in the four event adult program of a 42.2km Marathon, a 21.1km Half-Marathon, a 10km Run and a 5km run, along with the junior events from 300m to 2000m (for 5 to 13 years) starting at Trial Bay Gaol, South West Rocks.
This year saw another change in the course to lessen the number of loops run and to keep the runners off the main roads, using footpaths and walkways around South West Rocks from the Gaol to around Horseshoe Bay, the Back Creek and out to the Macleay River entrance marking the turnaround for of 10.1km for the half marathon and the turn for the first lap of the 42.2km marathon.
The 10km course turned before the surf club and the 5km course turned down the Fishermans Track before the German Bridge off Phillip Dr.
Mayor Liz Campbell, welcomed the athletes at presentation and outlined the history of the race started 38 years ago by Bill Killmore and the then Kempsey Jogging Club which ran from Kempsey to the Gaol, via Gladstone a distance of 42.2km, this was later changed to start from the Gaol and run the 21.1km to the Hat Head turnoff along the South West Rocks Road.
The new course is easier to manage giving spectators a better chance to follow the competitors and safer for competitors and volunteers as well as highlighting the sights of the area.
Clifford Hoeft from Port Macquarie was first to finish the 42.2km Marathon in a time of 2:56:39, following in second place by Raymond Wareham from Epping in 02:58:57 with third place taken by Kevin Byrne from Green Point in a time of 03:12:54.
The first female to finish was Claire Palmer from Glenreagh winning in a time of 03:00:26, followed by Toni Duncan from Port Macquarie in a time of 03:20:28 with, Laura Philip from Port Macquarie, third in a time of 03:51:48. First local Macleay Valley resident was Michael Kemp from Kempsey and tenth overall in a time of 03:30:25.
The Half Marathon was won by Isaiah Koopmans from Woolgoolga with a time of 1:20:36, followed by Craig Parsons from Korora in second place with a time of 1:20:43, with Cameron James from Port Macquarie placed third in a time of 01:22:41.
The female division saw Port Macquarie take the Trifecta with first to third placing with Ali Fitch from Port Macquarie winning in a time of 1:35:17, followed by Natalie Angel from Port Macquarie in 01:38:02, with Michelle Macdonald from Port Macquarie third in a time of 01:40:35.
The fastest local Macleay Valley residents were Vincent Lee from Kempsey in 01:33:21 followed by Georgia Watson from Crescent Head in 01:45:55.
The 10km run was won by Lindsay Wall from Yamba, in a time of 0:33:44 followed by Harry Jones from Port Macquarie in a time of 0:35:29 with Thomas Merkus from King Creek in third place in 0:35:42.
The female division was won by Alina Hill from Sawtell in a time of 0:43:23 followed by Jan Rooney from Boambee East in a time of 0:43:36 with Clarissa Morris from Port Macquarie third in 0:44:33.
The first local Macleay Valley residents, male and female were Finn Askew from South West Rocks in 0:37:39 and Jo McGoldrick from Turners Flat in 0:48:44.
The 5km Run saw Felipe Blemith from Port Macquarie winning in a time of 00:18:21, followed by Daniel Hope from Green Point in 00:18:49 in second place, with Levi Langham from Arakoon third in 00:18:52.
First female was Brooke Hosgood from Cundltown in a time of 00:20:24 with second place female going to Cleo Schubert from South West Rocks in 00:21:30 and Naime Schimanski from Armidale third in a time of 00:22:15.
The first local Macleay Valley residents were Levi Langham from Arakoon in a time of 00:18:52 and Cleo Schubert from South West Rocks in 00:21:30.
The junior events of four races for 5 to 13 years saw over 115 children participating, in varying distances from 300m to 2000m around the Gaol, they all received finishers medals, finishing down the official Finish Shute and later enjoyed the many random prizes on offer.
The best represented club was the Port Pacers, form Port Macquarie, followed by The Terrigal Trotters second with The Plodders from Port Macquarie third with the Hat Head Hammerheads one point behind in fourth.
All proceeds go to community groups who help marshal and run the event.
Full results available via link go to results on www.trialbaytri.com.au or "Google" South West Rocks Running Festival, results 2019.
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