HUNDREDS of healthy sporting enthusiasts donned their joggers and tights or shorts yesterday morning for the 39th annual Tamworth Ten and Fun Five.
It was almost a who’s who at the zoo to begin with, as many competitors upped the ante this year by choosing to support the “fun”element of the run and don costumes.
As a result there were some interesting characters at the starting line – clowns, a horse, some green blobs, a colonial woman and a whole heap of nurses.
Among those sporting a costume was 14-year-old Bree Poetschka.
Some may argue she had an unfair advantage in the Fun Five.
The horse suit she donned over her running gear boasted an in-built fan that pumped air around her legs to “keep the horse inflated”.
Bree told The Leader she had practised running with the e-bay bought suit “a couple” of times but had trained more for the run with it off.
Another competitor, “colonial woman” Joyce Webster, was keen to walk the non-competitive fourkilometre walk.
“I missed out on the run last year and really wanted to give it a go this year,” she said.
Cale Lawlor attracted his fair share of attention too running the Fun Five dressed a bit like we’d all imagine John Lennon would have in the Beatles hey-day.
Cale said he was excited to be participating.
“I haven’t run in this before,” he said. “I haven’t been training at all either.”
The perfect, almost spring day provided some good running – and walking – conditions too.
By the time the flag was waved on the Tamworth Ten the mercury had made it’s way to 10.3 degrees, up from a low of three degrees overnight and the wind that ripped through the city on Saturday had dropped to more of a breeze.
In the end former Tamworth man Ben Malby was the first man over the line in the ten and Walcha’s Narina du Plessis was the first woman.
Dillon Catzikiris was the men’s winner in the Fun Five and Megan Isbester was the first woman to finish.
Organisers said they had been impressed by the turn out this year, especially the number of youngsters keen to give things a go.
“Entries were phenomenal,” organiser Jeff Benson said.
“There was 15 per cent more entries across the board then we had last year.”
A total 174 competitors ran the 10km, 289 took on the challenge in the Fun Five, 197 people walked the four kilometre community walk and 59 entered in the dash for cash.
“In the end we had to close entries for the dash because there were just to many people,” Mr Benson said.