Stedman gets the cash
AS an endurance athlete, running under five kilometres at breakneck speed is anything but Sam Stedman’s idea of fun.
But t h a t d i d n ’ t s t o p t h e 27-year-old from executing an inch-perfect race to cause a major boilover and win yesterday’s hotly contested Townsville Road Runners Butcher on Bundock Dash For Cash in North Ward.
For al most 3 km Stedman bided his time. Then, when the moment was right, he pounced.
He crossed the finish line in 14 minutes, 53 seconds, just three seconds ahead of former winner Simon O’Regan.
Narrowly behind them were 2010 champion Billy Bragg ( 15.01) and Tony Gordon ( 15.07) in a red-hot finish.
‘‘ We ran the first kilometre in t h r e e m i n u t e s , w h i c h i s insanely fast,’’ Stedman said.
‘‘ They put the pace on early, and set a cracking pace – I don’t normally look at the times – but it’s pretty impressive when you can run that fast in that amount of time.’’
O’Regan, returning to the race for the first time since 2008, set the pace for much of the 4.67km circuit from Queens Gardens and led until around the 3km mark when the following pack stepped up.
While the Townsville-based Warrant Officer fought on, it w a s t h e e v e r - i m p r o v i n g Stedman who found extra legs.
The f i nish, which earned Stedman first prize money of $ 500, was more than a minute quicker than Stedman’s sixth placing from last year and followed his triumph in the Australia Day Fun Run in January.
‘‘ That was like a 100m sprint f o r a n e n d u r a n c e r u n n e r , there’s nothing fun about 5km,’’ said Stedman, who is training for his second crack at the North Face 100, a 100km race, in the Blue Mountains of NSW in May.
‘‘ I’ve been doing some hard training so it pays off at the important part of that race.’’
In the women’s race, rising Townsville running star Isis Flynn-Pittar showed no teething problems in her step up from the junior to senior ranks to claim her own share of the substantial prize money on offer. The teenager finished ahead of Savannah Sense in second place and Monique Flores in third place.
James Maguire won the junior boys race and Martinus Larsen the junior girls.