There was a mystery ingredient in the mix for Gary Andreazza, Narelle Lagergren and Roy Binks when the rain caused a last minute switch to the wet weather course for the grand final of the Griffith Joggers Arsova competition on Saturday. This is a flat and straight and fast 6.4 kilometres compared with the on-hill rough and winding 5.4 kilometres, so who would it benefit and by how much?
The three were starting off similar times so would be able to see each other most of the way, and especially at the turnaround on the out-and-back bicycle track. In the end the three swapped placings from last week, and the final tally closed up, as Roy at fourth edged closer to Narelle at seventh, but neither could break Gary who finished in pain but safe in eleventh place.
It could easily have been a different pudding as Narelle was only twenty seconds off first place and forty points - it was a close packed top ten. It was a consistent effort through the competition from Gary, well worthy of a trophy, and perfect compensation for his second place in the Surfer competition last year.
Richard West cooked up a victory on the day, to Sheila Marcus and Julie Duncan, the three making unexpected appearances in the placings, and Sheila even set a pb where everyone else succumbed to the longer run.
Further back Gerry Wilcox slumped from third last week to 31st, still buggered from the effort I guess, Rod Bortolin put in a shocker at 37th and looked like he wanted to be held up - literally - at the road crossing, and Dom Calabria swept the field to make sure everyone else finished safely.
Bronwyn Sigmund did it with boxing gloves and roller skates in the Short course, finishing relaxed at ninth, with the trophy in hand. The rest of the pointscore was closely fought, but unfortunately there is no trophy for second place. Another Johns legend has begun with Jack Johns the victor in his maiden run, from Margaret O’Grady and Elio Minato, the top ten dominated by the oldies.
Carissa Campbell chaperoned her youngster for 23rd, and Ron Anson, having spent more time out in the rain than anyone else, looked like a drowned rat at 24th.
Next week's run is Shanks' Pony Cup and the last and ‘funnest’ run of the Joggers year. Get there early for the race briefing.
To have a chance to win the Cup Joggers will need to bring fast feet, clear eyes and lucky palms, as it is a mystery course only marked out on the day. Joggers will start off the normal staggered start times but after the finish there is an extra lucky (or unlucky) handicap to be drawn from the hat, potentially sending the first Jogger home plummeting down the placings.
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