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Around the Island Relay... 2021


Last Sunday, 7th November saw another impressive line-up of athletes and supporters for the running of the 2021 Around Island Relay, with a stunning morning at Gallows Gate for the 6am sunrise start of the walking athletes; and the 7:15am staggered start for the running teams and individuals.

The winner of the ‘blue ribbon’ category of Individual Runner was originally presented to Trevor Fulton who showed the quality of his athleticism, only to realise the following day that he had unknowingly taken a wrong turn on unfamiliar roads and not completed the full 25K course.

First prize was then deservedly awarded to Ben Hayes, who ran a blisteringly quick time of 2:08:55 to take out the 2021 Competition. Douglas Donaldson’s consistent fitness as last year’s winner saw him placed second, albeit running slightly faster than his previous winning time. In third place was Eion Spaine, who tackled the unknown challenge with a gallant performance of commitment.

Special mention to 16-year-old Kosta Deszecsar who ran extremely well through the tough 25K course to place 4th in his first relay as an individual runner.

The winner of the Individual Walk category was this year taken out by a very capable well-known athlete whose contribution to this event spans decades and generations – well done Jenny Donaldson, who blitzed her last years’ time by 9:15! Jenny’s raw time (before the Age-Graded time handicap was applied) was up there with the best in the field of this year’s 13 Individual Walkers. Second place was awarded to Debbie Anderson, who last year placed third and also improved on her last year’s 25K time. Third place in the Individual Walk category, was awarded to a new participant this year – Douglas Lazic-Kirk who walked well with consistent speed through the unforgiving hilly terrain.

The impressive running team ‘Running Wild’ (Sienna Menghetti, Kingston Menzies, Rocco Menghetti, Ollie Anderson, Nate Christian-Bailey, Brycen Menzies) showed enormous stamina, skill and courage to easily win the ‘Running Team’ event. These six young Norfolk Islanders are showing endless athletic potential and will likely be our representatives of future years. The second placed running team was a group of capable runners named ‘Pasha Bulka’ who strung together a fast series of individual performances to be awarded with second place. Third place went to ‘Epututus’ who also put in great effort through all stages of the race.

The walking team’s category was won by ‘Care Norfolk’ (Emily Innes-Walker, Lauren Tierney, Shannara Grambeau, Sacha Wilson, Suzanne O’Brien, Liat Baddock, Mary Summerscales) who were well ahead of any competition – a seriously solid performance from this determined group.

Second place was ‘Sheff a Lieg’, closely followed by ‘Wise Women’.

A huge thankyou to the volunteers who kept the athletes watered, safe and ultimately fed throughout the 25k course – Adam Marshman, Jenny Gow, Rachel Nebauer, Ella Borg, Alice Rogers and Ella Rogers. Athletics Norfolk Island is truly indebted to these volunteers.

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