Ivan McDonald shook off last years injury worries to find form and take out the Tyler’s Hardware 8km handicap held in Horsham last Saturday. A field of twenty senior runners lined up for one of the season’s few flat courses along the banks of Wimmera River.
After missing most of last season with an injury, McDonald is finding form again, and with the flat course to his liking, ran strongly over the last half kilometer to overtake a determined Meg Parnaby 100m from the finish, claiming his first victory for two seasons. Ray Scott also ran well to claim third place.
Aggregate leader Fiona O’Brien finished 8th, taking her points total to 80, well ahead of her closest rival Bob Freeland, on 63 points.
Col Barnett again ran the fastest time of 29 minutes 44 seconds. Suzie Ellis was the fastest female and ran a personal best of 34 minutes 6 seconds.
Thirteen juniors lined up for the 3km handicap with Harry Steggall taking the honours and claiming his first win for the season, after a string of minor placing’s. Emily Parnaby was second followed by Naomi Jamieson third.
Karl Scott was the fastest junior in 11 minutes 57 seconds. Naomi Jamieson was the fastest girl in 12 minutes 55 seconds.
The largest sub-junior field for the year of 14 runners lined up for the 1.5km handicap. It was Elly Barnett who greeted the judges first with Isaac Ellis and Daniel Op de Coul sprinting to the finish line to decide second and third. Ellis just nudged out Op de Coul by 1 second.
Liam Scott was the fastest sub-junior in a time of 6 minutes 22 seconds. Fastest girl was Heidi Sudholz in a time of 7 minutes 2 seconds.
As a special feature of this race all runners were asked not to wear watches and to estimate the time they would take to complete the course. A special prize was awarded to the runner who ran closest to their estimated time.
Gary Howden was only 3 seconds away and looked to be a sure winner but Stephen Baird upstaged everyone by coming in within 2 seconds of his estimated time, which was a great effort.
In the junior race it was Naomi Jamieson who estimated the closest to her actual time.