A big thanks to all our members and volunteers who have made AURA a supportive and rewarding community.

Reading through the weekly news reports and monthly Ultramag for 2020, highlights just how much members squeezed into this uncertain year. Personally, I managed zero ultras as my planned races didn’t eventuate. It was great to live through members’ race reports and see the positive effect running makes in our lives.

It has been challenging a year with races rescheduled, cancelled and the uncertainty of restrictions around the corner. Race directors adapted their races to put on safe events and the second half of the year sure was a busy one. I feel for all the race directors who put so much work into their events which were then unable to be held, sometimes being cancelled days before the race date. The amount of work that goes into the planning and running of an event was multiplied as they were postponed, sometimes multiple times.

Only 1 of our National Championships was held as other races were cancelled or border locked. We are hoping next year Championships face a bit more luck and can be held with strong fields.

A highlight of the year was the virtual “IAU 6 Hour Global Solidarity Run” that 18 members participated in. At first, I was unsure as to the benefit of another virtual run but it became a great way to highlight members’ stories and the unique way they approached the event. Being an IAU event meant we got to connect with other countries and hear about the way they were coping with the pandemic.

It was also great to see a lot of AURA shirts worn in events as runners got behind the Australian ultra running theme. We have just had a refresh of our stock so hope to see even more next year.

Our 2021 membership has opened and it is great to see so many people jumping on board early. One of the committee’s goals is to increase member numbers so we simplified the structure and dropped the price to a flat $49. There is a lot of value to be had with race discounts, member benefits and the community around AURA.

Still to be announced are the event calendar, Australian Championships, members points comp, webinar schedule and annual awards.

Lastly, I would like to offer a huge thanks to all our volunteers and committee who’s hard work and large time commitment keep AURA being a rewarding part of the Australian ultrarunning scene.

Stay safe and here’s to big 2021.

Ewan Horsburgh
AURA President