Sulphur Creek’s David Sweetman has comprehensively won the Professional Cross Country Club of Tasmania’s AJL Heavy Equipment 21km Half Marathon at Ulverstone on Sunday.
Hitting the lead after overtaking one of the race favourites Allan Bakes with nearly eight kilometres left to race, Sweetman was never seriously threatened as he surged ahead stretching his margin over the following runners.
Only Kim Reader and new comer backmarker Julian Lesek looked remotely capable of causing an upset in the final kilometres but Sweetman remained stoic and crossed the line over 2 mintues ahead of runner up Kim Denwer, another race favourite Ellen Elphinstone and fourth-placed Reader.
Joining the PCCCT nearly three decades ago, Sunday was the 500-run veteran’s seventh club win with his last one being another long distance epic the 25km Ironman in 2008.
A big field of nearly 70 runners enjoyed sunny running conditions with virtually no wind to speak of. The new course began at West Ulverstone’s River Road Cricket Clubrooms before an out and back journey to Turners Beach.
Sixth-placed Anna Murton backed up her terrific performance in the marathon some weeks back with another fine effort on Sunday while father David also ran well finishing just out of the first ten and brother Thomas also registered fastest time.
Penguin’s Judy Ray was the fastest female, also finishing just outside the first ten while Gerard Lowry, Dallas Van Rooyen and Courtney Sutton all recorded some impressive personal times.
Last year’s winner 62-year-old Chris Talbot finished in 29th place and was 28th fastest overall in the field of 69 runners.
Cooee’s Dane Febey’s contribution to the club over the past years was recognised as he was presented with his 400 run badge at the pre-race briefing.