Run backs quake too

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By LAURA MCLEAY

It was The Health Club team who caught spec­ta­tors’ at­ten­tion as they walked the roads spruced up in red and black – sup­port­ing both the Mata­mata Chron­i­cle Tower Run and those af­fected in the Christchurch earth­quake.

More than 400 lo­cals turned up to brave the rain and the mud last Fri­day and, al­though the rain stayed steady through­out, it did lit­tle to de­ter spir­its.

Chil­dren, teenagers, adults and se­niors all put on their run­ning shoes, added a rain jacket and a hat and made the most of the evening.

The race that started at 6pm started at Tom Grant Drive, headed up Tower Rd and looped back to fin­ish at the Mata­mata Swifts AFC head­quar­ters.

Whether con­tes­tants were run­ning or walk­ing, a smile lit up their faces as they crossed the fin­ish line – a big achieve­ment for many. Ev­ery­one was cat­e­gorised by age, gen­der, walk­ers, run­ners or groups.

Wayne Guest was the first to run down the fi­nal leg of the race and fin­ished with an out­stand­ing time of 21.57 min­utes. Sarah Mor­gan was close to fol­low for the adult fe­male run­ners in 26.12 min­utes.

One race par­tic­i­pant who stood out from the rest for his ded­i­ca­tion was Daw­son Bruce. The 85-year-old paced his way around the course with a trou­bled hip and lim­ited sight. But even Mr Daw­son kept the smile on his face. He joined the tower run to raise money for Christchurch call­ing his cam­paign, Walk­ing for Christchurch, and humbly asked for do­na­tions. The money came pour­ing in and Mr Daw­son walked the walk with con­fi­dence – look­ing as fit and healthy as the rest.

At the fin­ish line, there were plenty of ap­ples and bot­tled wa­ter to help re­plen­ish en­ergy along with sausage siz­zles and cof­fees.

Red Rac­ers: From left, Deb­bie Ruck, Char­wyn Bigham and Becks Marti­novich from Mata­mata Health Club spiced up their walk­ing gear with a bit of colour.

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