2002 Yearly Report
2002 Australian Centurions 24 Hour Event
13-14 April 2002
Coburg Harriers Track, Coburg, Melbourne
|6 Hour Run
12 Hour Run
24 Hour Run
6 Hour Walk
24 Hour Walk
The races started at 10AM on Saturday 13th and it was a wonderful sight to see the large number of walkers and runners circling the 400m athletics track over the next 24 hours. A computerised lapscoring system was used and enabled a small number of dedicated enthusiasts to successfully run an event of this magnitude. Early conditions were drizzly but the weather soon cleared and only one further shower late in the afternoon spoiled the otherwise good conditions.
At the end of the 24 hour race when the final gun sounded, 9 of the initial 12 running competitors and 9 of the initial 10 walking competitors were still circling the track. This is a very high finish ratio and indicates the support that all the runners and walkers got from each other as the race progressed.
In the 24 hour run, Mick Francis was the overall winner with 216.298 kilometers while Mikela Ward came first in the women's catogory with 104.540 kilometres.
In the 24 hour walk, Carol Baird, Lyn Lewis, John Harris and Karyn Bollen finished 1,2, 3 and 4 respectively. All achieved the Centurion standard of 100 miles (162.134 km) in 24 hours. For Carol and John, it was a case of once again while for Lyn and Karyn, it was a first time achievement and qualifies them for membership of the elite Australian Centurions.
The last few hours of the event proved an exciting period. First Carol Baird powered past the 100 mile mark in 20:31:34 to break her Australian residential ladies record. Then as the 23 hour mark approached, only a few laps separated Lyn, Karyn and John. First Lyn passed the 100 mile mark in 22:46:54 to become the first Australian woman to have run and walked the 100 mile within 24 hours. Then Karyn collapsed with only a few laps to go for her 100 mile. Her feet were a complete mess with blisters and a quick First Aid patch up was required before she could limp home. That let John Harris pass her in the dying minutes to reach the 100 mile mark in 23:34:50. Just over a minute later, Karyn passed the milestone in 23:35:56.
All 4 competitors continued to walk towards the 24 hour mark at varying paces and less than 2 laps separated them at the end.
The places for the 24 Hour Walk were as follows
And the 6 Hour Walk result was as follows
|1||Bill Dyer||VIC|| 30.40 km
The Centurion performances on the day were as follows
Profiles of the walkers were as follows:
Carol Baird (C 39) completed her 6th Centurion performance in the last 3 years. She has now walked 100 miles within 24 hours 4 times in Australia, once in New Zealand and once in Malaysia. On this occasion, she broke her Australian records for 100 km, 100 miles and 24 hours with an awesome performance. Carol just gets better every time she steps on the track.
Lyn Lewis (C 44) is an accomplished ultra-distance runner and is a former racewalker over the shorter distances. With such a dual background, the quest for Centurion membership was an obvious one and eventually Lyn decided to have a go. She was able to reach the 100 mile mark in just under 23 hours to become the first woman in Australia to have completed 100 miles within 24 hours in both running and walking mode. This is a very rare feat which until now had been restricted to only a few Australian men.
John Harris (C 12) is now a triple Australian Centurion, having done the hundred previously in 1975 and 1998. John had not done his usual preparation for such a tough event and he had to draw on all his reserves to reach the 100 mile mark in 23:34:50.
Karyn Bollen (C 45) is a complete newcomer to the ultra scene. She competed in the 12 hour run in the 2001 Coburg 24 Hour event and walked most of the way to a distance of 79.4 km. Her walking on that occasion was so impressive that it was suggested she give the Centurion challenge some thought. She came back some 12 months later and produced a superb performance, overcoming horrendous blisters to reach the 100 mile mark in 23:35:56. It was a wonderful moment for Karyn, her supporters and the spectators as she crossed the line. She was awarded the Jack Webber Memorial Trophy for the most meritorious walking performance of the day.
Geoff Tranter is a very accomplished Centurion, having completed the British standard on 12 separate occasions. He is also a Continental, American and New Zealand Centurion. His best performance is an astounding 129 miles of walking within 24 hours in 1981 in England. He made the trip to Australia with fellow Birchfield Harriers walker John Fenton to try for the last Centurion badge to complete his collection. Unfortunately, he just failed, being just short of 98 miles at the time the final gun was fired. Geoff gave it a real go but was just not quite fast enough in the first 12 hours of the event.
76 year old Centurion Stan Miskin (C 23) had a great day, breaking his AURA (Australian Ultra Runners Assn) 75+ records for 12 hours, 100 km and 100 miles and just falling short of his 24 hour record. Of course, these are running records and Stan walks! Stan is already an Australian Centurion, having done his 100 mile walk in 1998 and he, like Lyn Lewis, is one of the few Australians to have completed the run/walk 100 mile/24 hour doubles.
NSW walker and ultra athlete Steel Beveridge came down a fourth time to try for Centurion membership but, once again, found himself short of the final target. He was able to complete 50 miles in the first 12 hours but faded in the second half of the event.
John Belfio entered the event with the hope of walking 100 km in 24 hours and was rewarded with a very good first up 112 km.
British Centurion John Fenton was our second overseas walker but on this occasion, it was not to be. He was not comfortable and struggled early to reach what must have been a personally disappointing 110 km.
Young Melbourne racewalker Graham Watt was back for his 4th walk in our annual Centurion event. On the other occasions, he has reached exhaustion point in the 50-60 km range but this year he managed to get to the 98.4 km mark before being forced to withdraw. This was a much better performance by Graham and indicates that he has the potential to go all the way if he sets his mind to it.
Congratulations to all involved, especially to the volunteers and participants. The spirit of 24 hour running and walking lives on until next year's event.
AUSTRALIAN RESIDENTIAL RECORDS
Congratulations to those who competed.
I look forward to seeing some of you back again next year to try to
improve on your performances when we host the Year 2003 Centurions Walk
in New South Wales.
21 April 2002