Waltzing Matilda Runs to Rhythm

Running mum Matilda Iglesias has her own slant on an old expression “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” and finds that “a run a day keeps the cobwebs away.”

Her dedication to a program of running at least one kilometre every day and two hour sessions that might build to 20 kilometres on one of those days has enabled her to rip six minutes from the 28 minutes that was her standard for five kilometres when she joined the Stawell Amateur Athletic Club in 2012.

Since then she has become a regular winner and has practically dominated the five kilometre Stan and Karen Watson Handicap which she won for the third time in four years last Saturday. Her only defeat in the race was in 2014 when she was pipped by the evergreen Gary Saunders.

In the tightest finish of the season, Iglesias “waltzed” past veteran Stephen Baird – in the midst of a long and painstaking comeback from injury – in the last 150 metres to win by just seven seconds with Dave Hunter steaming into third place two seconds further behind.

A mere 10 seconds separated the next six to finish which was a triumph for club handicapper Garry Rice.

The eighth-placed Rhonda Rice was just 24 seconds behind the winner but was the unfortunate victim of a wrong turn which cost her at least 200 metres – and possibly the spoils of victory.

Iglesias, who has improved her stamina by running endurance courses on the trails around Halls Gap, is targeting the Mosaic to Mountain half marathon at Dunkeld on August 2 as the next test of her staying power.

In the Sub Juniors version of the race over one kilometre, Olivia Hunter broke through her first win by holding off the fast finishing Kayla Membrey and last start winner Miles Membrey.

The club has a bye this Saturday but travels to Rupanyup on July 11 for the Tyler’s Hardware Handicap on a fast and friendly course eight kilometre course. Fun runners are welcome and should meet at the football ground from 9.30am.

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