Interesting Facts About Our Members

Where do I start? There are always bits of trivia about the members of any group and we are no exception. So here are some of the more interesting ones about the Australian Centurion Club members.

  • Bill Dyer became our youngest Centurion when he completed his 100 miler at the age of 16. In fact, Bill still remains the youngest person in the world to have become a Centurion. Bill was a top junior walker at the time but certainly did not train for the event. He just decided to give it a try and kept going and going and going....

  • Merv Lockyer became our oldest Centurion when he completed the 100 miiler in 1996 at the age of 65 years. To add to this amazing feat, Merv had only taken up walking after a heart attack some years before and had a plastic knee joint. Now I challenge anyone to beat that.

  • Fred Brooks beat Merv by completing his 100 miler at 67 years of age in 2001.

  • Deryck Skinner really raised the bar in late 2005 by completing his 100 miler at the age of 72 years and 11 months, thus becoming the oldest new Centurion ever in the world. Deryck's time was an impressive 22:39:55. Deryck quickly built on this first effort, and in just under 12 months, he completed the 100 mile distance within 24 hours on 4 occasions, once as a 72 year old and three times as a 73 year old. On the third of these four occasions, he chieved this feat during the first 24 hours in a 48 hour event. In the full 48 hours, he walked 257.877 km, the best ever by an Australian.

  • Jill Green is the oldest woman to have completed the 100 mile walk within 24 hours in Australia - in 2005 at 63 years of age. A resident of the Isle of Wight in Britain, she had previously qualified in 1999 as C38 and this was her second walk on Australian soil.

  • While we have 54 male members, we have only 11 women members, namely Carmela Carrassi, Sue Clements, Jill Green, Sandra Brown, Carol Baird, Lyn Lewis, Karyn Bollen, Cathy Cox, Caroline Mestdagh, Michelle Thompson and Sharon Scholz. Of these 11, Carmela, Carol, Lyn, Karyn, Cathy, Michelle and Sharon are Aussies - Sue, Jill and Sandra and Caroline are amongst the many overseas walkers who regularly come over for our events.

  • Our 100 mile record is held by Ian Jack while our 50 mile record is held by Clarrie Jack. Clarrie and Ian are identical twins. Clarrie and Ian were top walkers in the seventies and still keep fit. They still look the same.

  • Our most decorated member was for many years Chris Clegg who has completed the 100 miles in England, Australia, USA and Holland. He completed 5 100 milers during a long and illustrious ultra distance career. He has since been joined by Geoff Hain who has been awarded 5 of the 6 available Centurion badges in the modern era - Australia, New Zealand, USA, England and Continental Europe. Only the Malaysian badge currently eludes Geoff.

  • Sandra Brown, arguably the greatest female ultra walker in the world, competed in our 1999 walk and set Open Womens records that will take some beating. Sandra has completed over 100 100 mile/24 Hour events. She is a multiple Centurion, having qualified the  British, Continental, New Zealand, Australian, American and Malaysian centurion standard. She has since been joined in this feat by Jill Green. Sandra and Jill are the only 2 walkers to have achieved all 6 Centurion badges.
  • Peter Bennett is our most prolific Australian ultra distance walker, having walked in excess of 100 miles within 24 hours an amazing 18 times.

  • We have 12 men who have both walked and run the 100 mile distance in Australia inside 24 hours. These members are (in order of achieving this feat) Claude Martin, Jim Turnbull, George Audley, Stan Miskin, Yiannis Kouros, Geoff Hain, David Billett, Ian Valentine, Justin Scholz, Barry Loveday, Anyce Melham and Michael Harvey. Claude and Michael were walkers by sport while the others were all ultra-distance runners by trade.

  • We have 5 women who have also achieved the ultimate double - having both run and walked 100 miles in 24 hours. These are Sandra Brown, Carold Baird, Lyn Lewis, Michelle Thompson and Sharon Scholz.

  • Sometimes it takes determination and perserverance to gain this ultimate of prizes. Graham Watt failed 5 times in a row - 1998 54.8 km, 1999 66.8 km. 2000 60.0 km, 2002 97.2 km and 2003 100.8km - before finally achieving the Centurion distance in 2004. His time of 23:59:23 is the closest shave of any attempt. In fact, his last 2 hours were the fastest of the whole race as he pulled out all stops to beat the final gun. Graham is now the Liberal Member for the Seat of Burwood in the Victorian State Parliament.
  • Steve Jordan had an even bigger story behind his eventual success in 2013. It was his 12th attempt at the 100 mile walk, a saga that began in 2008. He came close in 2012, eventually finding himself just a few laps short of the required distance in the dying hours of the race. He slowed down and just walked it out, finishing with 157.232 km.
  • Justin and Sharon Scholz are our first husband and wife team to become first time centurions, Justin in 2012 and Sharon in 2013. Justin repeated his centurion walk in June 2013 to complete a fascinating double and then they both walked a further hundred together in September 2013, the first Australian couple to do so at the same time. That means they have both run over 200 km and walked over 100 miles in the one calendar year (2013). I think this will take some beating!
  • Terry and Karyn O'Neill are of course also Australian Centurions and a husband and wife team but Karyn joined our ranks in 2002 (as Karyn Bollen) before they were married. They have since both completed 100 mile walks as a married couple but not at the same time (as yet)!

    • Chris Clegg becoming an American Centurion in 1972
Chris Clegg after finishing his 100 miler in USA in 1972.