The photos posted here are compressed by Google software. I am happy to provide high-resolution images - just let me know what you require at There is no cost.

Monday, February 18, 2019

2019 Brendan Foot Supersite Round the Bays Half Marathon, 10k & 6.5k Wellington Sun 17 Feb


Dom Post Story
Dom Post Story

Around about 13,000 souls participated in this annual event in close to perfect conditions. 

The event is organised by Sport Wellington

With a new major sponsor in the form of Brendan Foot Supersite it was all go on the waterfront with road closures and an army of marshals strategically positioned to ensure a safe event. 

This year the designated charity was Kaibosh which run a food rescue operation. 

Apart from a hiccup in the 10k everything seemed to go pretty smoothly. 

I was at the wind wand drinks station manned by an enthusiastic crew of students and teachers from Wellington College. 

I know the stations further on in the course would have been manned by a posse of Wellington cadets who are regular helpers for this big event. 

If improvements were needed at my spot, which is a prime spectator point, it should include toilets and a bit of inspiring music. 

Last year they had cheerleaders to help participants get the blood flowing. There were some drummers making plenty of noise in the last 200m and all of this stuff helps create the right atmosphere and is generally appreciated and remembered. 

At the finish line there were a couple of very good commentators including Rees Buck who knows one or two things about the sport of running.  Good job gentleman.  

In addition there were the helpers dishing out medals, water and bananas and just generally keeping the flow moving. These latter tasks are never easy as the hordes pour in over several hours with Kilbirnie Park really filling up.   

The first race to start was the half-marathon and I figured for this and the 10km the front runners should reach the wind wand corner in about 20-21 minutes after the gun give or take. 

I was working on a possible 67 minute half-marathon finish time and a 31 minute 10km finish time factoring in the good conditions and what I hoped could be a competitive field.. 

In the half it was Dan Jones who rounded the bend first followed a metre and a half back #MadHarry wearing shoes (shock horror). Later I did see an entrant without shoes running on the prickly grass of the centre plot.

Dan couldn’t quite decide which drink table to use but in the end headed to the one with the blue stuff which rumour has it could have been an electrolyte drink of some kind. It looked as if Harry drank nothing at this refreshment station but there should have been another watering hole at the start of Shelly Bay Road.

Behind Dan and Harry were Bert Prendergast and Kristian Day with Ben Twyman and Matt Moloney slightly back but in sight of them all. These six are all members of the Scottish Wellington club, so let’s call it a quadfecta plus 2.

The bulk of the field was still a minute or two away.

The compact figure of Mel Aitken hit the drink stop as the first woman in the half with a Leith Harrier runner who I did not know, coming through next but looking reasonably comfortable.  

As we now know this was Sharon Lequeux.

I could not pick out the third woman as it was getting pretty hectic by now.   

On the return journey to Kilbirnie Park and the finish it was Dan Jones all the way romping home in with nobody close enough to threaten. 

It looked like Harry had faded more than a bit because heading along Cobham Drive were Bert P and the others I mentioned all holding their positions until the finish. 

Bert understandably looked pleased with his 2nd placing and his time of 71.00, a personal best by a couple of minutes so he tells me and clearly the reward for all the hard training.  Actually if the ANZ database is accurate Bert took about 4 minutes and 37 second off his previous best!!

Don’t believe him if he says he only starts racing in April because it’s a fib.

In the 10km race it was another big field with the leaders moving at a good clip. Thomas 

Strawbridge was through onto Cobham Drive first, with Paul Barwick and Finn Molloy the next two. Back a bit was Hector Farmer and then less than a minute later Nicole Mitchell.

But at the finish line there was a bit of confusion as the first runner home was Axel Tie who thought there were at “last five runners” ahead of him. 

But in fact the “front runners” were behind him as they had run extra in error which was confirmed and explained later by Thomas.  

So the finish times and placing for the first three/four runners in this race had to be adjusted to factor in the extra distance although I am not sure why Hector’s place and time did not end up in the results can only assume he was a DNF. An alternative explanation is that he was wearing somebody's else's number and is recorded with a different name.   

In the women’s race Nicole Mitchell was in a class of her own coming home fifth overall with a time of 37.18.  I don’t know if this was a record or a PB but it wouldn’t surprise me if it was both because the conditions for good times were near perfect with the potential for PB’s galore.

The winners of the 6.5km event were hard to spot amongst the finishing hordes because they were wearing black numbers which are not easily identified amongst the dark blue numbers of the 10km. 

There were at least two 10Km runners wearing black numbers so it was a case of keeping the eyes peeled to pick the real 6.5km finishers. The clue is that they would be coming in fast, if that was ever possible given the congestion.  

So it was other Scottish Wellington club member HiroTanimoto who came in first with Nathan Tse from Wellington Harriers second. 

I presume that Nathan and Hiro had just got off the plane from Auckland where they raced in last night’s National 10km track champs and the Carnival of Running 1500m respectively. Both have been busy boy's. 

In third place was 15yo running star Will Anthony who held off a few other speedsters including Dougal Thorburn and Andrew Wharton.

In the women’s race it was Tessa Hunt all the way followed by Renae Creser from Kapiti Harriers and Amelia Harris.     

Half Marathon Men
1.09.57 Daniel Jones
1.11.00 Bert Prendergast
1.11.06 Kristian Day

Half Marathon Women
1.22.31 Mel Aitken
1.27.08 Sharon Lequex
1.29.57 Shona Cameron

10km Men
00.35.57 Thomas Strawbridge
00.36.07 Finn Molloy
00.36.17 Paul Barwick

10km Women
00.37.18 Nicole Mitchell
00.38.29 Lindsay Barwick
00.40.03 Miranda Spencer

6.5km Men
00.20.28 Hiro Tanimoto
00.20.40 Nathan Tse
00.20.57 Will Anthony

6.5km Women
00.25.05 Tessa Hunt
00.27.18 Renae Creser
00.27.31 Amelia Harris

Half Marathon Photos

10Km Photos (not many of these as I had to evacuate to the finish line)

Kilbirnie Park Photos

Better than a Knighthood

Medals for Everyone 

Will Anthony, Hiro Tanimoto, Nathan Tse the 6.5km 1, 2 & 3

Lyn Clark on Marketing Duty 

Amanda Broughton with Wellington Scottish Mascot 

Bert Prendergast, Dan Jones, Kristian Day Wellington Scottish Half Marathon Trifecta

Nicole Mitchell Women's 10km winner and Mel Aitken Women's Half Marathon winner