Thursday, January 18, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Sweat, Sand, and Zooper Doopers

More than thirty dedicated runners laced up their shoes and embraced the challenges of the Shawn’s Summer Social Series off-season program with the Mackay Road Runners, kicking off from the Blacks Beach Tavern car park. A special salute goes to Club Captain and Race Director, Jim Ford, whose ingenuity carved out a course encompassing flat and undulating roads, sandy stretches, challenging hills, and stairways that tested the mettle of each participant.

The 5km and 10km course, a two-loop journey, allowed runners to tailor their experience based on their individual capabilities for the day. Battling the relentless summer heat and humidity, all participants eagerly pushed themselves for the ultimate reward awaiting them at the finish line – the coveted zooper dooper. A heartfelt thank you goes to Col Meng, Alana and Adam Knesevic for generously providing the refreshing treats. Special appreciation also extends to Andrew Short for assisting Jim in the meticulous course set-up.

Outstanding performances lit up the track, with notable runs from Paul Mackenzie, Grant Holmstrom, Luke Leven, Alana Knesevic, Glynis Forse, Jose Short, Lily Leven, Tim Dalton, Ryan Evetts, Natasha Joynson, Kim Saron, Leanne Connor, Julie Whibley, Abbey-Jane Whibley, Lauren Connor, Carmel Mahon, Jo Hughes, and newcomer Todd Turner. Birthday celebrations were in order for David Isbister, who conquered a remarkable 5km alongside impressive runs from Daniel Stampa and Adam Knesevic, navigating the course with a double pram carrying Vivien and Harvey.

The excitement continues this Sunday with the #13 Shawn’s Summer Social Series event launching from the scenic Northern Beaches suburb of Bucasia. Runners and walkers are urged to assemble at the Bucasia Shopping Centre carpark by 5 pm, with the race set to commence at 5:15 pm sharp. Keep an eye out for the formal 2024 Club calendar/program on the website soon. The running community eagerly anticipates another exhilarating event as the series unfolds.

Contributed by Janelle Tilse

Champion veteran swimmer, Daniel Stampa also loves lacing up the running shoes.

Champion all-round cricketer, Ryan Evetts enjoys pounding the hilly Blacks Beach pavements.

New runner to the Shawn’s Summer Social Series, Todd Turner (left) gets a big welcome from the Mackay Road Runners.

Daughter and Mum Abbey-Jane and Julie Whibley enjoy a training run in the leadup to this year’s running goals.

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