THE Flack Advisory Bendigo Region teams endured a tough run in Saturday's road relays at Sandown Racecourse.
Round five in Athletics Victoria's XCR19 series pitted teams in the second relay showdown of the cross-country season.
Athletes ran 6.2km legs, or two laps of the 3.1km course on the windswept circuit.
Bendigo's depth was put to the rest as top two runners Andy Buchanan and Brady Threlfall were on the Gold Coast to compete in the half marathon, 21.1km, and the 10km respectively.
The in-form Kye Jenkyn also did not run at Sandown.
Lead-off runner for Bendigo in men's division two was Nathan Meade in a time of 20.28.
In his first season of cross-country action, Meade is building up to contest the Kona Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii.
A newcomer to Bendigo's squad, Nathan Stoate ran the second leg in fastest time of 20.14 and was followed by Mike Bieleny, 22.11; Harrison Boyd, 22.22; Ben Stolz, 22.37; and Nigel Preston, 20.37.
An overall time of 2 hours 8.31 minutes earned Bendigo sixth place in a field of 14.
Top three were Knox, APS United and Frankston.
In the women's division four event, Bendigo's line-up of Anne Buckley, 27.23; Kathryn Heagney, 36.16; and Debby Kirne, 30.01; fought on to be fifth of 10 teams in 1:33.42.
Best result for Bendigo was men's division five where Luke Millard, 23.11; Jayson Carter, 24.09; Andrew Creer, 24.02; and Darren Hartland, 24:56; achieved an overall time of 1:36.19 to be fourth.
Other results for athetes with links to Bendigo were Jamie Cook's feat of 20.40, which was fastest time for Glenhuntly as it claimed fourth place in men's division two.
Rebecca Beagley led off Glenhuntly's run in women's division one and ran the 6.2km in 22.49 as the line-up was runner-up to Athletics Essendon.
Round six in Athletics Victoria XCR19 is on this Sunday at Albert Park in South Melbourne.
Athletes will contest the Lakeside 10, a 10km road race which starts and finishes at the Lakeside Stadium precinct.
Runners will race two laps on an out and back course from Lakeside Stadium to Junction Oval.
Have you signed up to the Bendigo Advertiser's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in central Victoria.