MATT Hooke’s brilliant fightback from a mid-season injury was capped by an impressive victory in Saturday’s running of the Flack Advisory-backed Glen Allen Memorial 15km.
The Bendigo Harriers athlete raced along the O’Keefe Trail course in a time of 54.55 and finished three minutes clear of his nearest rival.
A field of 47 stepped up from the usual 6km or 8km races held throughout the season to compete in one of the most prestigious events on the Flack Advisory Bendigo Region calendar.
South Bendigo’s Daniel Plowright led through the opening 2km, but from there it was Hooke who was in control.
Peter Cowell from Bendigo Harriers ran a brilliant second half on the climbs to runner-up and the first 50-plus athlete in a time of 58.04.
Ben Stolz completed a treble for the Harriers as he passed Plowright in the latter stages to be third and fourth in times of 58.13 and 53.35.
University’s Craig Green crossed the line in 58.52 to be fifth overall and first of the 40-plus class.
Many in-form athletes vied for the women’s 15km title. A dual winner on the O’Keefe Trail, Sarah Jalim from University was never headed on her way to the line in a time of 59.28. Alice Wilkinson’s hot form continued as she ran an excellent time of 1:01.47 and was first Athletics Victoria-registered athlete to take the Glen Allen Memorial title.
Bendigo Harriers’ Jill Wilkie was third across the line and first in the 50-plus division.
A time of 1:04.26 for Wilkie meant she was the best age graded athlete in the event.
One of the best duels was in the 60-plus men’s as University’s Phil Shambrook edged out Harriers clubmates Leon Gilbert and Hunter Gill in a time of 1:12.45.
University’s Trinity Sanderson achieved a time of 1:14.53 to win the women’s 40-plus division.
In the 3km race, Ben Powell from Bendigo Harriers just held off South Bendigo’s Teleah Hayes in times of 10.02 and 10.05.
The under-15 categories were won by Yazmin Hayes, 10.57, and Jesse Delves, 11.38.
Maddison Hooke won the under-18 girls title in a time of 11.48 as clubmate Isaac Everett raced to the line in 11.24 to win the open title.
Winners of the 1500m were Mason Woodward and Megan Wilson. University’s Lachlan Feuerherdt won the invitational 1500m as John Justice and Ken Bruechert, both in the 80-plus class, were second and third.
The female invitational 1500m was won by Skylar Woodward from University clubmate Charli Green.
The finish to the 750m was close as Renee Ford won the girls event from Kate Wilson and Abbey Cartner. Top three in the boys event were Lewis Lonsdale, Avery McDermid and Willison Robinson from University Athletics Club.
Meanwhile, athletes from the Bendigo University club starred in weekend’s races on the Sunshine Coast and Brooklyn. Husband and wife Alan and Jenny Buchanan were in top form in the Sunshine Coast Marathon.
Racing in the 60-64 years class, Alan was second his category as he achieved a time of 3 hours 30.15 minutes for the 42.2km contest.
Jenny won the 55-59 years division in a time of 3:47.24.
Clubmate Russ Jenkins raced in the Brooklyn Invitational Mile. Competing under International Masters status, Jenkins won the 50-60 men’s division in a time of 5.15.