AURA STATEMENT – 50kms National Championships results decision
Friday, 20 April 2018

The Australian Ultra Runners Association (AURA) has worked closely with Fairfax, the race organiser of the Australian Running Festival this past week, to come to a resolution regarding the unfortunate circumstances surrounding the 50km race, which was also the 2018 AURA 50kms Road National Championships, whereby a number of participants mistakenly took a wrong turn on the course.

It must first be clarified that the three males to place officially stayed on course whilst following the lead bike, and therefore received their podium finishings accordingly.

AURA sought clarification from the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU) and based on this, provided advice to Fairfax on how to move forward with the results as well as how to manage the outcome of the 50kms National Championships.

We express our upmost empathy to all participants, especially those who were chasing PBs and qualifying times for other events. AURA understands the circumstances during the race were an isolated event, however any and all inaccuracies made will be recorded, and lessons learnt, which will then be passed on to other race directors to try and prevent this from happening again.

AURA has also come to an agreement within its committee that it will do all it can to encourage future National Championship events and their race directors to include a lead bike for both the male and female groups. And for the years 2018 / 2019, the association’s Australian Team Selection Committee will take into consideration any and all extra distances covered when reviewing applications for international representation.

After much deliberation and advice sought between AURA, Fairfax race organisers, and the IAU, it has been determined that official results must be listed as ‘gun to tape’ finish times and there can be no modification, and that runners must have completed the full and complete course. However Fairfax are welcome to publish a secondary set of ‘unofficial’ results to estimate 50kms times based on mat recordings.

Therefore the placings in the women’s event under Fairfax are as follows:

  1.      Larissa Tichon
  2.      Karen Pienaar
  3.      Rachel Glasson
  4.      Alena Scurrah

Because of the circumstances, it has been decided to award the AURA 50kms National Championship jointly to Larissa Tichon and Rachel Glasson, with Alena Scurrah third (Karen Pienaar is not an AURA member).

Alexis Oosterhoff
Vice President