Noosa once again played host to another exceptionally well organised USM weekend of events, with the Half Marathon, 10km and 5km the focus for Striders members. The weekend rain saw the humidity soar to 97% at 7am, when the Half Marathon was 30min underway. Most competitors felt the effects of the humidity on the second 5km lap, but it could have been a lot worse with a lot of rain and wind the night before. The Noosa course is a flat and fast out and back lap course, which some runners prefer as it helps break the race down into sections which helps with pacing and anticipating just where you are on the course. The timing of the Noosa Half now makes it ideal preparation for the Gold Coast Marathon, with enough time to recover and finish off the last 6 weeks of marathon training. The girls outnumbered the boys once again, and there were some great new PB’s.
First Strider across the line was Stan Fetting making a return to long distance racing after an annus horribilis last year with a recurring calf tendon injury. Stan bagged a PB of 1:24:05 for a 53rd overall and a 4th place in the 45-50 category and a tidy negative split and an average of 3:59 per/km. Second Strider across the line (wearing the club kit for the first time) was Enda Cotter with an impressive 1:29:21 and a big negative split. Duncan Price (aka Sherlock) continued a speedy return to running and fitness with a 1:32:30. Not far behind was a very fit Michael Stark (aka Mancoach) with a new PB of 1:35:39 despite the effects of his recent triathlon at Hervey Bay. Wayne Billington was next in 1:37:04, a great time given the disruption to his training schedule by work.
Revelation of the day had to be the first female Strider across the line Michelle White who had a massive PB of 5min! to record a 1:42:05. Just behind her was Jenny Cawood notching up yet another Half with 1:42:45 and 12th in her category. Karen Brown (aka Brownie) ran a solid 1:44:12 for a 7th in category and despite virtually de-gloving her entire big toe in a blister that has to be seen to be believed! Meg Watterston (Moretti) raced under her new married name for the first time and looked good out on the course for a 1:48:04. Sandy Scott backed up from the SMH Half Marathon in Sydney the weekend before for a 1:50:47 but you wouldn’t have known it was her second consecutive Half across 2 weekends! Paul Dack was sporting a much better pair of legs than the last time we saw him! – and that’s because due to injury his place was taken by Nina Studenko who ran across in 1:51:51. As she approached the 10km turnaround the announcer said “And here comes Paul Dack!”, with Nina waving and acknowledging the crowd. Classy quick thinking woman! Mark Lawton notched up another good race finish with a 2:23:07.
10km – our only competitor was Zara Di Bella who notched up a very good 57:59.
5km – Striders legend Tommy Donnet nailed another impressive run with a 26:21 to take out 4th place in his category M60-69. We can only dream of running on into our 60’s, and as fast as Tommy who keeps himself exceptionally fit.
Big thanks to Kymberly Stark for being our official photographer. To all those who competed, make sure you use this week to recover well, and restart your training sensibly. Perhaps you all want to think about running in the 5km, or 10km at Doomben on June 4 as another racing opportunity to sharpen you up for the Gold Coast.