THE rain mercifully held off until late morning last Sunday, allowing the Prom Country Challenge to go ahead at Toora in cool and blowy but fine conditions.
Organisers were delighted to see 131 runners participating in either the 30km main event or the 6km short course. In addition, 27 walkers registered.
Those who took the 30km route up Mt Best – and down again to Toora – were rewarded with a stunning panoramic view.
“It was windy, but you have to expect that given there’s a wind farm there!” said Nick Schelling, winner of the main event with a time of 1hour 58mins 14secs. He was just ahead of Bert Pelgrim, who ran the 30km in 1hour 59min 49secs to be second overall and the first veteran (41 to 55 years) home. In third place was Stephen Upton, who remarked (in his lilting Scottish brogue) that the steep green hills above Toora reminded him somewhat of his native Scotland.
Certainly, everyone agreed that conditions were much better than last year’s, when gale force winds brought down powerlines and trees, forcing a re-routing – and shortening – of the run.
Lots of local businesses threw their support behind the Challenge, pleased to support an event which encourages the community to be fit and active and brings visitors to the district.
There were many locals taking part in this year’s Challenge, making it a great community event. There were also many runners from further afield, Melbourne and the Latrobe Valley, in particular. Several of these people commented on how professionally the Challenge was run. They were pleased to be able to gather in Toora’s hall for the award ceremony at the end of the morning, rather than hanging around in the cold. And they loved the beautiful scenery.
A big contingent came down from Seaford, representing The Firm gymnasium.
They took out second place in the teams section of the 6km run, averaging out each member’s times for a time of 30min. 16sec. Great Southern Outdoors from Dumbalk came first in the teams section, with a time of 29min. 57sec.
Special mention should be made of Michael Hunter of Robertsons Beach (near Yarram). After coming 4th in 2008 and 3rd in 2009, he put in a great effort to take out first place this year in the 6km run, with a time of 23min 41sec. He was also the first local home and the first in the 12 to 18 years age group. The only challenge left for him now – apart from improving his personal best – is the main 30km Prom Country Challenge, but for that, he says, he needs to be 18. He is just 16 years of age.
Congratulations, too, to Rick Bromley (proprietor of the milk bar in Foster), who was the first local male home in the 30km event, with a time of 2h 20m 40s.
For photos see pages 8 and 9 of the paper.
Prom Country Challenge Results
1h 58m 14sec – 1st Overall Male, 1st Open Male – Nick Schilling;
1h 59m 49sec – 2nd Overall Male, 1st Veterans Male – Bert Pelgrim;
2h 3m 41sec – 3rd Overall Male, 2nd Open Male – Stephen Upton;
2h 6m 15sec – 2nd Veterans Male – David Fraser;
2h 10m 33sec – 3rd Veterans Male – Shane Pettingill;
2h 19m – 3rd Open Male – Dave Bendall;
2h 20m 40sec – 1st Local Male – Rick Bromley;
3h 4m 50sec – 1st Masters Male – Sid Toohey;
3h 11m 2sec – 2nd Masters Male – John Jervis;
2h 12m 8sec – 1st Overall Female, 1st Veterans Female – June Petrie;
2h 12m 10sec 2nd Overall Female, 1st Open Female – Natasha Fraser;
2h 30m 33sec – 3rd Overall Female, 2nd Veterans Female – Cathy Roberts;
2h 35m 44sec – 3rd Veterans Female – Susan Elsdon;
2h 50m 5sec – 2nd Open Female – Natalie Esparon;
3h 3m 30sec – 3rd Open Female – Carole Adam;
3h 19m 20sec – 1st Local Female – Madelon Lane.
6 km prizewinners
23m 41sec – 1st Overall, 1st Male, 1st 12 -18 Age group, 1st Local resident Male – Michael Hunter;
23m 54sec – 2nd Overall Male, 1st Open (19 – 40) Male – Daniel Vogelpoel;
24m 31sec – 3rd Overall, 1st Veterans (41 – 55) Male – David Griffiths;
25m 22sec – 2nd Open Male – Ricky Geritz;
26m 14sec – 2nd 12 – 18 Male, 2nd local resident Male – Dylan Hately;
27m 15sec – 3rd 12 – 18 Male, 3rd local resident Male – Darcy O’Connor;
27m 35sec – 3rd Open Male – John Fitzgerald;
27m 43sec – 1st Masters (over 55) Male Sean Hill;
28m 41sec – 2nd Veterans Male – Peter Tunks;
29m 26sec – 3rd Veterans Male – Graeme O’Connor;
30m 54sec – 2nd Masters Male – David Clayton;
31m 42sec 3rd Masters Male – Geoff Scott;
35m 5sec – 1st Under 12 Male – Ashely Hewson;
41m 29sec – 2nd Under 12 Male – Toby Humphrey;
41m 33sec – 3rd Under 12 Male – Morgan Cook;
26m 53sec – 1st Overall Female, 1st Open Female, 1st local resident Female – Sarah Lewis;
28m – 2nd Overall Female, 2nd Open Female – Alesha Tunks;
28m 30sec 3rd Overall Female, 3rd Open Female, 2nd local resident Female – Emily Humphrey;
29m 1sec 1st 12 – 18 Female, 3rd local resident female – Donna Sparkes;
31m 13sec – 1st Veterans Female – Diane Materba;
33m 59sec 1st Masters Female – Kerryn Tunks;
34m 39sec – 2nd Masters Female – Desley Tindale;
34m 46sec – 2nd Veterans Female – Janet Wilson;
34m 58sec – 2nd 12 – 18 Female – Bethany Lawson;
35m 11sec – 1st Under 12 Female – Elli Clavarino;
35m 54sec – 3rd 12 – 18 Female – Sharni Clavarino;
36m 20sec – 2nd Under 12 Female – Stefanie Busuttil;
38m 4sec – 3rd Veterans Female – Paula Pettingill;
41m 24sec – 3rd Under 12 Female – Shelbie Sunderland;
44m 26sec – 3rd Masters Female – Vicki Thompson.