IAU/ITRA Trail World Championships, Portugal
Cleland 50 (National Short Course Trail Championships), SA
Gold Coast 100, Qld

Saturday our team of determined Aussies raced in the IAU/ITRA Trail World Championships held in the stunning Mirandha de Corvo, Portugal, and what an eventful day it was!

In the women’s division there were 159 finishers with French runner Blandine Lhirondel claiming the title of 1st Female when she crossed the finish line in 4:06:17.

Aussie Stephanie Austin from Merimbula, NSW took an amazing 19th Female with a time of 4:33:58, and she certainly has something to celebrate as her result was the best by an Australian woman in world trails history!

Jodie Earl from Bullaburra, NSW held on to 77th Female with 5:15:12.

Sydney’s Sarah Ludowici took 104th Female (5:29:41), Jessica Collins from Margate, Tas claimed 137th (5:56:47) and Lauren Rooke from Coromandel Valley, SA stood tall with 142nd (6:12:14).

With 204 finishers in the male division, our very own Ryan Lowe from Macmasters Beach, NSW claimed 105th with his time of 4:25:19.

The male winner was Jonathan Albon from Great Britain who ran the distance in 3:35:34.

Cleland 50 (National Short Course Trail Championships)

The Cleland 50, held on Sunday in SA, also doubled as AURA’s National Short Course Trail Championships.

The 50km route covered three different loops, heading to Mt Lofty and down to Waterfall Gully Road, and is considered a tough race.

Despite having injury issues in the lead up, AURA’s John Csongei from Aberfoyle Park, SA went in with a number of goals in mind, including hope of a podium finish.

He secured 1st Male (Overall) in the race, as well as 1st Male in the National Championships listing, completing the course in 4:53:38 and said on his socials he was not expecting a win.

“Lacking the fitness to finesse my way through the course how I would have liked, I had some friendly company as I was caught up by other competitors at various points,” he said.

“But hey, the size of the engine is only one part of the equation, and it makes for an exciting race.”

AURA member Graham Tottey from Adelaide, SA secured 2nd Male in the National Championships listing, finishing the race in 6:32:05.

For the women, it was Hannah McRae from NSW who took 1st Female in the National Championships, only 1 minute 20 seconds off Csongei’s time. It was a double celebration for the ultra runner though, as she claimed 1st Female out of all participants and 2nd Overall – a spectacular effort on such an arduous course and a course best by an estimated 27 minutes!

Her time saw her finish the race in 4:54:57.

Continuing with placings in the women’s National Championships through the Cleland 50, Ina Schapiro claimed 2nd Female with 5:27:11, Vicky Rounding took 3rd Female in 7:02:58 and Glenda Banaghan held on to fourth (7:03:41) while Vicki Shaw claimed fifth (8:07:37).

Congratulations to AURA finishers with Japanese citizenships Kazu Kuwata (5:39:53) and Atsushi Ogai (6:26:47).

Gold Coast 50/100

On to the Gold Coast 50/100 held on Sunday, and what fantastic results from AURA members at the race. Marita Eisler from Woody Point, Qld secured 1st Female as well as top finisher overall with her incredible time of 8:26:11 in the 100km. Right behind her was Corrina Black from Mermaid Beach, Qld who took 2nd Female and 2nd Overall with her event finishing in 9:03:20.

Malcolm Gamble from Mordialloc, Vic claimed victory for the men taking 1st Male/3rd Overall in 9:09:32 whilst Mick Francis, travelling from WA, held on to 2nd Male and crossed the finish line in 9:23:54.

Congratulations also go to Pam Muston (10:59:21) who ran the 100km, and John Nuttall who finished the 50km race in 4:54:50.

The next two events on the AURA calendar will both be held on June 15, including the Sri Chinmoy 24 Hour Track Race (24hr, 12hr and 6hr) in Campbelltown, NSW and the last man standing format event Mirrim Wurnit Back Paddock Ultra in Romsey, Vic.

Pictured: The Australian team at the IAU/ITRA Trail World Championships in Mirandha de Corvo, Portugal. Photograph – Gary Mullins.