Debutants win big during Great Ocean Run
OCEAN RUN: Local runner Tony Woolford led all the way in the biggest field in the 26-year history of the WRATS Great Ocean Run from Red Rock to Coffs Jetty.
Woolford covered the 45kms of beaches and headlands in 3.35.01 to relegate Port Macquarie's Tony Green to runner-up for the second year.
For Woolford it was success at his first tilt at the event .
So it proved for the first lady to reach the jetty as well. Amanda Kyneur had heard of the Red Rock to Coffs Jetty at an earlier trail run and decided to see why so many runners come back year after year.
Her enjoyment of the run was made even greater as she crossed the finish just over a minute ahead of female run record-holder, Melissa Bulloch, 4.05.40 to 4.06.46.
Among the field were three "legends" of the race with 60 finishes between them. Twin Towns runner Bob Beer was able to complete his 21st run while Peter McKenzie made it 20 and Angie Grattan 19. All three promised to return in 2017.
While the individual run records survived the onslaught from the various running clubs the Oborne2run husband and wife team of Jodie and Tim Oborne set a new mark of 3.36.39 for relay teams, narrowly ahead of the Sweetie Pies outfit of Martine Marshall and Anton Planitz with 3.44.42.
For most of the runners it was a chance to make the most of the near-ideal conditions to post a personal best or in quite a number of cases finish for the first time.
The "club" team from Port Macquarie consisting of Tony Green, John Lawrie and Clifford Hoeft with a total of 15 were just edged out of a win by the Coffs local grouping of Tony Woolford, Rodney Koopmans and Peter Nolan on 12. For the ladies the northerners, Amanda Kyneur, Alex Ralph and Carol Wingreen totalled 8 points to claim the honours convincingly.
Organisers from the WRATS were grateful for the assistance from those who acted as drink stations and assisted at the finish, especially the run icon, Jim Bennington, who helped hand out the trophy thongs. It was very pleasing to have so many new runners and to see so many others come back for the event each year.