Bo­gong climb a suc­cess

Alpine Observer - - Sport - By ALEX CRAIG

THE 40th Mt Beauty Con­ques­tathon on Sun­day saw 225 run­ners and walk­ers par­tic­i­pate in the an­nual sup­ported climb of Mt Bo­gong.

Par­tic­i­pants ranged from elite trail run­ners to fam­i­lies with young chil­dren as well as some spe­cial guests in­clud­ing Si­mon Goss, who hasn’t missed a con­ques­tathon since 1974 and Bright’s Rod Har­ris who won the very first event al­most 50 years ago.

The first con­ques­tathon was organ- ised by the Mt Beauty and District Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion in 1969 be­fore they stopped run­ning the event and it was re­vived by the Up­per Kiewa Val­ley Li­ons Club in 1974.

De­spite num­bers be­ing slightly down Li­ons Club pres­i­dent Rod Hyde said that it had been a highly suc­cess­ful and ex­cit­ing day.

“We even had an en­gage­ment an­nounce­ment on the sum­mit,” he said.

“For the first time we have been spon­sored by the ski­ing and moun­taineer­ing com­pany La Sportiva, who have agreed to cover all our out-of-pocket ex­penses so that all our en­try money can go to good causes.

“They also pro­vided prizes and give­aways, and we hope this spon­sor­ship will con­tinue for an­other two years at least.”

Elite run­ners are still try­ing to bet­ter Andy Kro­mar’s time of 1 hour 51 min­utes more than ten years af­ter set­ting it.

His record re­mains in place for an­other year with Sun­day’s win­ner Ben Der­rick mak­ing the dis­tance in 2 hours 20 min­utes.

He was fol­lowed by Sam Perry (2hr31min), Ian Franzke (2hr33min), Tim Slater (2hr37min) and the first woman across the line Belinda Ralph (2hr39min).

Der­rick’s win was his sixth or sev­enth from 13 starts.

“The trails are in mag­nif­i­cent con­di­tion, and it’s great to have such en­thu­si­as­tic vol­un­teers run­ning the event,” he said.

“It gets to be a very long day for the peo­ple on the check­points, and all the run­ners and walk­ers re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate it.”

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