Conditions were on the good side for Ballarat but the westerly breeze made the return part of the course an effort. We took a hit in the open divisions this week with only two men’s teams (down 7 athletes) and one team in the open women. Despite the low numbers we still had strong Premier Men’s and Women’s teams with the continuing of the see-sawing 3rd and 4th place between the two - men finishing 3rd and the women 4th. Numbers were also down with our juniors but so were other clubs and with this our U20s won the team competition. A couple of individual highlights for this round was Nardine Bainbridge’s best ever XCR placing, with a 5th place in the open women’s competition and Stephanie Thomas breaking another record, the women’s 40+ 15km road race record, in a time of 60 minutes and 57 seconds.
Open Women 15km
It was another great result for the Premier team with Nardine Bainbridge crossing the line in 56 minutes and 24 seconds with Brianna Bunworth coming in second then Stephanie Thomas, Claire Hodgart and Danni Rogan bringing home the team in 4th place. This now puts the team firmly into 4th place in the ladder, 6 points ahead of MUU, and despite losing a couple of premier athletes to the National Half Marathon Championships in the next round, we have a chance of defending this position now. Sadly we could not fulfil the Div 3 team with only Janice Hodgart and Jo Francken completing the 15km race, but with the team sitting in the middle there is no need for panic, no chance of relegation. Commiserations to the injured Brenda Cashin, who had a fall about half way through - better luck at Angelsea!!
Premier – 4th
Div 3 – 6th
Div 4 – 13th
40+ - 8th
40-44 - Stephanie Thomas 4th
50-54 – Carolyn Huell 7th
55+ - Janice Hodgart 10th
Open Men 15km
Numbers were also down in the men’s division this round, which is not unusual for Wendouree, and for the first time this season we failed to fill the Div 6 and 7 teams. Despite this, it was a great result for our Premier division team, with the return of Callum Drake, we had four of the six athletes around the top 20. First in was Liam Cashin finishing in a time of 48 minutes and 16 seconds then Cody Shanahan, Ryan Geard, Callum Drake, Daniel Dunstone and Matthew Schaumberg in his debut for the Premier division and showing great improvement over the last couple of rounds. Our Div 6 was 8th with Alex Tyrrell, Alistair McDonald, Alan Hammond, Peter Cashin and Adrian Jeffkins making up the team. Coming 8th and was enough to stay in 2nd place in the ladder but only by a slender 2 points. We should be able to stay in the promotion zone as long as we bounce back at Anglesea and field teams in the remainder of the rounds.
Premier – 4th
Div 3 – 2nd
Div 6 – 3rd
Div 7 – 5th
Open Men – Jack Rayner 3rd, Cody Shanahan 9th
60+ - Alan Hammond 3rd, Peter Cashin 5th
Sophie McMinmee was our only U18 women representative and finished 7th and in the U20 Justine Muscat finished 12th.
We just missed out on the U16 girls team with only two athletes, with Mia White finishing 6th and Abigail Thomas finishing 11th. This drops the team back to second place behind Frankston. There is still a chance of a premiership if Frankston don’t field a team at Anglesea – we’ll see!
In the U14s Ella Vrhovac was 13th in the U14 girls race.
It was a solid showing from our U20 men with the in-form Christiaan Weitsz finishing 5th in a time of 19 minutes and 46 seconds then a re-surgent Kirk Shanahan and Bailey Sharp to round out the team which finished first. With no Mornington team, the U20s are now on top of the ladder by 2 points and a chance of a premiership. In the U18s than McMinimee had a strong performance finishing first again for the team in a time of 19 minutes and 17 seconds, followed by Brandon Muscat and Robert Weitsz rounding out the team and Bailey Rankin putting in s solid effort in his return to racing.
In the U14 Mitchell Roshier was 10th, his best XCR result for the season and first top ten result and Anthony Mosele was 14th.
Men U20 – 1st
Men U18 – 3rd
Men U14 – 7th
Women U18 – 3rd
Women U16 – 2nd
Men U20 – Christiaan Weitsz (6th), Kirk Shanahan (7th)
Men U18 – Ethan McMinimee 4th
Women U18 – Sophie McMinimee 7th
Women U16 – Mia White 4th