XCR Round 4: Ekiden Relays
Glenhuntly Athletic Club - Latest News
Our Men's and Women's Premier teams show what they're made of on the toughest of XC courses
Myrniong was very, very cold, and the terrain was the toughest in the XCR program so far this season, going by the comments emitted from some of Victoria's best ever athletes after they crossed the line at Myrniong on Saturday last week. Athletes endured not only the rough, rugged and uneven slopes of St Anne's Winery but also strong bursts of icy cold head winds as they emerged over hill crests onto more flattened ground during parts of the race. No surprises, then, that the Hunters' grit prevailed, and both our men's and women's teams forged strongly on to bring home top results for this year's Ekiden relays.
Our Premier Women's team is going from strength to strength, backing up their number one result at Cruden Farm one week earlier with another win at XCR Round 4 in Myrniong. South Melbourne put their strong runners at the front end of the race, but Glenhuntly had the depth and breadth to move into #1 position halfway through the relay, and hold on. A big 'shout out' to our junior athlete Madison King, who brought the Premier team home on the last leg.
Our Women's Division 2 team also delivered a fabulous result, finishing 3rd on the day. They now hold onto equal 2nd place on the ladder (with Yarra Ranges) so will look to put up a strong challenge over the coming rounds. Our Masters women did fabulously, too, with both of our Women's 50+ teams taking silver and bronze on the podium.
Anne Munro ran the fastest W40+ time for 8.0 km on the day (30:44), which was the 2nd fastest time of all women on the day, beaten only by our own Open athlete, Anna Kentwell (30:26). We are currently holding good positions on both the W40+ (4th) and W50+ (2nd and 5th) season's ladders.
What can we say but ... brilliant! Our Premier Men dug deep and produced their best result in a long while, finishing up with a well-deserved silver medal around their necks. They definitely gave the race favourite, Bendigo Region, something to think about, keeping the pressure on throughout the race. As with the women's Premier team, the men also fielded a junior athlete on the last leg, and so it was Aiden Velten who brought the team home strongly for their silver medal placing. Gutsy running by all! The Men's Premier team is now sitting in 5th place on the season's ladder, with barely anything standing between 2nd to 5th placed teams ... let's see what our men can bring to Round 5 at Sandown next week.
Unfortunately, our Men's Division 2 and 4 teams were bereft of the full complement, but there were still some fine efforts by those who did run. Well done to our Junior Men's U16 team of Henry Dwyer, Mark Rainey and Jackson Sealie who put in a great effort to finish 7th. And, our Men's 60+ team also came to the call and finished 5th on the day. Chris Wardlaw showed he is still in good form for the cross country circuit, running a strong 8 km leg for the M60+ team.
A big shout out to our 3 club helpers for the day - Glenn Walker, Tony Doran and John Daniel.
A big thank you to each of you for acting as club helpers at the Ekiden relays - your support was invaluable and greatly appreciated.
What is an Ekiden Relay?
Ekiden is a type of long-distance relay race which emerged in Japan as early as 1917. An Ekiden Relay is commonly held over the marathon distance of 42.195km with teams of runners completing legs of varying distance, usually on roads. The IAAF/World Athletics recognises world records for men for five stages (with a final leg of 12.195 km) and for women for six stages - not sure why more women are thought to be needed to do the same job, nevertheless both men and women run over the same total distance, i.e., marathon distance. In the Athletics Victoria Ekiden program, Premier men field a team of 6 men to cover 38.2 km and Premier women field a team of 5 women to cover 31.2 km.
- Summary of Results -
W Open Premier
31.2km Ekiden Total time: 1:58:25
Erika Florez: 33:41 (8.8km)
Anna Kentwell: 30:26 (8km)
Emilie Guy: 23:35 (6.1km)
Emma Hogan: 17:24 (4.7km)
Madison King: 13:19 (3.6km)
M Open Premier
38.2km Ekiden Total time: 2:05:34
Samuel Toll: 28:25 (8.8km)
Jack Highnam: 27:01 (8km)
Denyan Claxton: 23:06 (7km)
Ben Kelly: 19:21 (6.1km)
Tom McFarlane: 15:52 (4.7km)
Aidan Velten: 11:49 (3.6km)
W 50+ Team 1
16.3km Ekiden Total time: 1:19:30
Kim Nanscawen: 38:55 (8km)
Gill Highnam: 21:35 (4.7km)
Kara Gilbert: 19:00 (3.6km)
W Open Division 2
25.5km Ekiden Total time: 1:48:56
Cassie Little: 34:39 (8.8km)
Amelia Cowley: 30:22 (7km)
Rebecca Kirkham: 26:26 (6.1km)
Anindita Samsu: 17:29 (3.6km)
W 50+ Team 2
16.3 km Ekiden Total time: 1:30:53
Lisa Deramond: 44:38 (8km)
Rozlyn Walker: 24:36 (4.7km)
Victoria Haritos: 21:39 (3.6km)
W 40+ Team 1
18.8km Ekiden Total time: 1:30:30
Anna Munro: 30:44 (8km)
Kellie Macknamara: 34:43 (6.1km)
Helen Rainey: 25:03 (4.7km)
18.8km Ekiden Total time: 2:13:02
Chris Wardlaw: 41:38 (8km)
Michael Ryan: 31:12 (6.1km)
Kevin Esmore: 1:00:12 (4.7km)
14.4km Ekiden Total time 1:03:50
Henry Dwyer: 24:51 (6.1km)
Mark Rainey: 21:23 (4.7km)
Jackson Sealie: 17:36 (3.6km)
W 40+ Team 2
18.8 Ekiden Total time: 1:57:15
Nat Esparon: 42:29 (8km)
Joelle Jones: 39:09 (6.1km)
Michele Forbes: 35:37 (4.7km)
20.5km Ekiden Total time: 1:41:05
John O'Leary: 42:00 (8.8km)
Angelo Portelli: 32:53 (7km)
Lyndon Loader: 26:12 (4.7km)
M Open Division 2
34.6km Ekiden Total time: 2:16:51
Andrew McEvoy: 32:57 (8.8km)
Antony Van Eeten: 29:59 (8km)
Dale Woodbridge: 27:32 (7km)
Joel Samsu: 25:31 (6.1km)
Bradley Wynne: 20:52 (4.7km)
M Open Division 4
34.6 km Ekiden Total time: 1:15:32
Aaron Murphy: 39:17 (8.8km)
Simon Bowly: 36:15 (8km) - Photo Gallery Glenhuntly Athletic Club Ekiden Relays @ St Anne's Myrniong-
Photos by JAZZ DEOL Photography and De Castella Run Coaching plus some personal pics by our members
Author: Kara Gilbert
Date published: 4th July, 2022
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