Tower Run set for its 40th birth­day

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page -

‘‘ The tar seal Ter­ri­ers are hav­ing a rest, now that we’ve seen Thomp­son at his best. But we are sure to be back, af­ter run­ning over Thomp­son’s Track. Well done Colin.’’

The pa­per stated: ‘‘Thomp­son had noth­ing more to say - he said it all with his run’’.

Fol­low­ing the run, com­mu­nity com­ment sug­gested it should be­come an an­nual event and it was soon de­cided that ev­ery De­cem­ber the whole com­mu­nity could par­tic­i­pate in what would be­come the an­nual Tower Run.

Richards com­peted in two more Tower Run events un­til he moved away in 1979 to start Tony Richards Toy­ota, now run by his sons.

‘‘We were in­vited back for the 35th year. Brian Black picked me up in his he­li­copter from Whi­tianga and we flew over and pre­sented the cups, then we flew back,’’ he said.

Sprint­ing ahead to present day and 40 years later, the Tower Run main­tains much of it’s ini­tial plan­ning.

Kevin Guest, Steve Wen­zlick and Lynne Coun­sell with sup­port from Sport Waikato or­gan­ise the event as a fundraiser for the Kaimai Run­ners and Mata­mata Ath­let­ics Club.

To mark the mile­stone event on March 3, spe­cial an­niver­sary medals are be­ing ar­ranged.

Mata­mata-Pi­ako Sport Waikato co-or­di­na­tor Lou Beer says while the route has changed a num­ber of times over the years and the dis­tance has var­ied, it has al­ways been the sim­plic­ity and good na­tured com­pet­i­tive­ness of the event that has con­tin­ued to at­tract up to 400 en­trants.

‘‘The most hotly con­tested cat­e­gories are open men and women who com­pete for the King and Queen of the Tower tro­phies.

‘‘You should be mark­ing your cal­en­dars with Fri­day 3rd March and dust­ing off your run­ning shoes to join the a num­ber of win­ners from pre­vi­ous years who we hope will ac­cept the chal­lenge and en­ter again.’’

She says the event is an ideal dis­tance to test New Year res­o­lu­tions for peo­ple plan­ning to get ac­tive again and a great way to farewell the sum­mer run­ning sea­son. Any­body new to run­ning should con­tact Beer on 07880 9088 for train­ing pro­grammes and ad­vice.

Sto­ries pub­lished in the Chor­ni­cle 40 years ago showed the first Tower Run was a suc­cess. More pho­tos of the Tower Run over the years on page 8. Lou Beer

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