The Bundaberg community braved the morning chill as Cancer Council’s 2019 Ring Road Run aimed to raise more than the heart rate with a target of $20,000 to go towards cancer research and support.
Cancer Council event organiser Jill Huth said it was a great turn-out with 275 participants who had pre-registered and more were signing up before the morning race.
The Ring Road Run is made up of three courses over 10km, 5km and a 2km junior dash for children under 10 years of age.
The 10km race was the first to begin with some competitors doing it for fun, others felt a little competition then there were those who were running in the name of cancer, for themselves or a loved one.
Completing two laps of the 5km course gave the 10km competitors completing lap one a feel for the warm welcome they would receive with 5km to go.
Brothers first and second in 10km 2019 Ring Road Run
In an amazing effort to cross the line one minute apart in first and second place were brothers James Thomas, 18, and Matthew Thomas, 12. The pair completed the 10km 2019 Ring Road Run in under 36 minutes.
Finishing first, James said he hadn’t been running much lately since he started studying at university and he was injured at the moment.
James said he now had to keep an eye on his little brother who kept on his heel the entire race.
“I’m actually scared of him now,” James laughed.
“At his age there was no way I was running that fast.”
James said in the last two years Matthew had changed his view on life and was now one to watch.
“Matthew used to love sausage rolls and was a bit chubby, then he started doing triathlons and our whole family got in to it,” James said.
The Year 7 St Luke’s Anglican School student said it “was totally the truth” and modestly said he was proud his older brother came first.
Both the teenagers said they loved competing in the Ring Road Run.
“We just love coming to this event,” James said.
“I have done the 2km and 5km events before and this is my first time running the 10km,” Matthew said.
Ring Road Run Ambassador
But it wasn’t just the teenagers who were proud of their achievements, Ring Road Run Ambassador Jaye Pickler took part to spread the message of cancer awareness.
At 25-years-old Jaye said he’d had a “cancer scare” and wanted to spread the word to ensure people in the Bundaberg Region looked after themselves.
“I had a bowel cancer scare and so my message is that it can even happen to young people,” Jaye said.
“I’m ambassador to help bring about awareness and hope people even young people will be reminded to be tested regularly.”
Woongarra State School principal Jeff Irwin was also spreading the message of fitness to the younger generation.
Running with his mates Phil Hodge and Tony Ryan, Jeff said they all enjoyed running.
“I really love running, I do a lot of running and do it to keep fit,” Jeff said.
“We have a really good running community around Bundaberg and it’s great to encourage each other.
“I take part in the Park Run and it’s great when I see the students there taking part.”
Jeff said the 2019 Ring Road Run event was a great day and something the community could get behind to raise money for Cancer Council.