PORT Macquarie claimed all three positions on the female half marathon podium at the South West Rocks Running Festival on Sunday.
Ali Fitch was first across the line in a time of 1:35:17, followed by Natalie Angel in 01:38:02, with Michelle Macdonald rounding out the top three in a time of 01:40:35.
Fitch admitted she had time at the halfway mark to see what lead she held.
"I did enough to stay in front without busting myself," she said.
The family were going to camp for the long weekend, but when her daughter became sick over the weekend they abandoned the idea.
"She was a bit disappointed so we set up the tent in the lounge room," she said.
"It's good that it's so close that you can drive up the morning of the race."
Her success at South West Rocks came a touch over six weeks since she competed at Ironman Australia.
Did she head up there with a belief she could win?
"I saw the time from last year and thought to myself 'that's doable'; I might go back and do the full distance next year," Fitch said.
On a successful day for the family, husband Stu finished second in the "old farts".
Port Macquarie also claimed the 42.2 kilometre full-distance marathon win with Clifford Hoeft crossing the finish line first in a time of 2:56:39.
The five-kilometre run also saw a Port Macquarie victory with Felipe Blemith winning in a time of 00:18:21.
Clear, sunny skies greeted an increased field of more than 500 runners who took up the challenge of participating in the four-event adult program of a 42.2km Marathon, a 21.1km Half-Marathon, a 10km Run and a 5km run, along with the junior events from 300m to 2000m (for 5 to 13 years) starting at Trial Bay Gaol.
This year saw another change in the course to lessen the number of loops run and to keep the runners off the main roads.
The course used footpaths and walkways around South West Rocks from Trial Bay Gaol to around Horseshoe Bay, the Back Creek and out to the Macleay River entrance marking the turnaround for of 10.1km for the half marathon and the turn for the first lap of the 42.2km marathon.
The best represented club was the Port Pacers, from Port Macquarie, followed by The Terrigal Trotters second with The Plodders from Port Macquarie third with the Hat Head Hammerheads one point behind in fourth.
The junior events of four races for 5 to 13 years saw over 115 children participating, in varying distances from 300m to 2000m around the Gaol, they all received finishers medals, finishing down the official Finish Shute and later enjoyed the many random prizes on offer.
All proceeds go to community groups who help marshal and run the event.
Full results available via link go to results on www.trialbaytri.com.au or "Google" South West Rocks Running Festival, results 2019.
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