Muddy run . . . but still FUN

Waihi Leader - - Front Page - By ME­LANIE CAMOIN news@wai­hileader.co.nz

The Waihi Beach LJ Hooker Fun Run was held on Satur­day in wet con­di­tions. Or­gan­is­ers (from left) Ange Oliver, Krista Har­ries and Alex Baker are pic­tured on the fin­ish line.

It was a bit chilly last Satur­day but par­tic­i­pants got a good warm-up run­ning and walk­ing along the Waihi Beach coast­line.

Close to 300 run­ners and walk­ers from across the North Is­land joined the third edi­tion of the LJ Hooker Over the Top Fun Run.

Ig­nor­ing the wet and muddy con­di­tions, chil­dren and adults took a leap of faith run­ning and walk­ing along the beach and to Orokawa or Ho­munga Bay.

Be­fore the start of the races at 9am, Waihi Beach Bak­ery baked 120 donuts for the par­tic­i­pants, while the or­gan­is­ing team and mar­ket stalls were set­ting up on Brighton Park.

The event fea­tured runs or walks of 3km along the beach, 6km to Orokawa Bay and a 10km leg to Ho­munga Bay for a fin­ish and prize­giv­ing at mid­day at the park.

Krista Har­ries, part of the or­gan­is­ing team, said this year, the event could have been re­named the “Over the top mud run” as the rain driz­zled.

“When we marked the route to Ho­munga last Thurs­day it was beau­ti­ful but to­day is re­ally muddy,” she said.

The an­nual event is a fundraiser for Waihi Beach school to help them set up a bike track at the front of their school for the stu­dents and wider com­mu­nity to use. This year, the list of spon­sors ex­tended with the ma­jor help from Waihi Beach LJ Hooker.

“It is fan­tas­tic to have them on board and they helps us to­wards fi­nanc­ing our Safety Man­age­ment plan for the race track and the hefty DOC fees.” New LJ Hooker owner Gary Al­way said he and his team did not hes­i­tate to help.

“They needed some help and it is good to have an op­por­tu­nity for chil­dren and their fam­i­lies to have fun to­gether. It keeps them ac­tive too,” he said.

The or­gan­is­ers have se­cured spon­sor­ship with LJ Hooker for the next two years, Krista said.

Num­ber One Elec­tri­cal So­lu­tions, Alitech Win­dow Sys­tems, Waihi and Waihi Beach Laun­dro­mat, Mau­rice Trapp Group and Brown­more Con­struc­tion are also spon­sor­ing the an­nual event with sig­nage, race num­bers and cups.

Waihi Beach school PTA or­gan­ised the mar­ket place with food, art and craft, cloth­ing dur­ing the event.

Look­ing back at the launch of the event three years ago, Krista said that it has been an “ex­cit­ing jour­ney” to have vol­un­teers, par­tic­i­pants and busi­nesses on board.

PHOTO / ME­LANIE CAMOIN.

Barry Jes­ney of Waihi Beach took part in the 6km leg.

The 6km run­ners be­fore their climb to Orokawa Bay.

Waihi Beach Surf School owner, Ai­dan Com­rie was on the mic.

PHO­TOS / ME­LANIE CAMOIN.

The mar­ket or­gan­ised by Waihi Beach school PTA.

The 10km walk­ers with Martin Thorpe (bright yel­low) the first adult.

First place for the 6km was Jake Wilkinson fin­ish­ing in 26 min­utes and 2 sec­onds.

Mace Har­ries came sec­ond over­all in the 6km race.

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