14 November, 2022
Ultra-success for backyard ultra
AFTER over 100 kilometres and 19 gruelling hours, experienced Cairns ultrarunner Adam Fox stood atop the ladder at the recent inaugural Old Mates Backyard Ultra hosted on the Tablelands.
Tackling a 6.7km course every hour on the hour, the event attracted over 60 runners from across Far North Queensland and as far south as Moranbah to Old Mates Farm in Upper Barron.
The relatively new run format challenged participants to complete as many laps as they could until they could not go any further, the run did not stop until the last runner decided to call it quits.
Race director Joshua Duff said the runners battled through heatwave conditions during the weekend run but powered through.
“It was unfortunate for the runners that we were hit with heatwave conditions for the event,” he said.
“They almost seemed to love the challenge of the heat even more.
“We had runners finish anywhere from one lap up to our last one standing who completed 19 laps and finished early on the Sunday morning.”
Fox was the last one standing, completing 19 laps totalling 127.3 kilometres, he was pushed by Port Douglas’ Gary Venz who finished on 18 laps just in front of Cairns school teacher Michael Haseldine with 17 laps.
The last standing female was Cairns runner Peta Travers-Jones who managed to finish 17 laps totalling 113.9 kilometres, she overcame Mareeba local Sonya Alba-Miller who finished on 15 laps and 100 kilometres.
“It was a phenomenal event that allowed all the entrants to challenge themselves and run further than they ever had before,” Duff said.
“It didn’t matter whether runners ran a few laps or many, everyone supported each other in what was a family friendly atmosphere.”
Old Mates Backyard Ultra included camping for the participants, crew and families at Old Mates Farm.
The event created a fun and friendly atmosphere with a Halloween dress up lap for runners, a lolly scavenger hunt for kids and the usual Old Mates Farm animal feeding.
Old Mates Backyard Ultra will be back again in 2023 with a date yet to be decided