Thousands of runners took to Pall Mall on Sunday in a riot of colour for the annual Bendigo Bank Fun Run.
Young and old, and all of abilities, runners could run 21, 10, 15 or five kilometres, in a circuit round central Bendigo.
Over 2,000 people entered the run, which raises funds for Bendigo Health. This year money raised goes to Bendigo Health’s residential care appeal
Nine year old Maurice Nihill may be young but that didn’t stop him coming second in the five kilometre run.
Maurice was beaten by Jac O’Shea by just five seconds, coming in with a time of 18.55 to Mr O’Shea’s 18.50.
Maurice’s mother Loretta Nihill was expecting Maurice to do well, but not quite so well.
“I thought he would do pretty well, but I didn’t really have any expectations,” Ms Nihill said.
“I know he does like to run. I knew he would try his hardest.”
Maurice says he wasn’t expecting to go quite as fast as he did, he was just aiming to beat last year’s time of 20.05.
By the end of the race he knew he was coming second. He gave the last 100 metres his best shot, with a final sprint.
Maurice’s older sister Genevieve also came in with an impressive time. The 11-year-old finished the five kilometre run with a time of 23.05.
Maurice plans to give the five kilometre run another shot next year, and maybe one day even enter the 10, 15 or 21 kilometre runs.
Read more: Go inside the Bendigo bank fun run in 2017
Bendigo’s Nigel Preston tore into first place for the half marathon.
Mr Preston gave the half marathon a shot after running 15 kilometres in last year’s fun run.
Mr Preston did the course in 72.55, a jot under his time for the Melbourne half marathon of 73.30.
It’s a running joke among his friends that Mr Preston doesn’t run enough, he only averages 80 kilometres a week.
A regular runner, he was pleased to see plenty of people out at the run having a go.
“I’s just really nice to see people getting out and exercising,” Mr Preston said.
“I just think it’s a great place to run.”
It wasn’t just fast and fit young things running.
Grandparents, young children and whole families gave the fun run a go.
Sporting pink tutus and covered in colour, Fiona Aumann and Michelle Davies were proud to have run the 10 kilometre event.
The effort was “not bad for a couple of old chooks,” Ms Davies said.
The pair were feeling “fantastic” after finishing. They only began running 12 months ago, to improve their fitness.
They’d run five and eight kilometre events before, so they decided to give 10 kilometres a shot.
“[We’re] feeling really good, we’re psyched, we’re so glad we finished,” Ms Davies said.
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