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Sport
Hermanus parkrun turns 4

Hermanus parkrun celebrated their 4th birthday in style last Saturday in Camphill Road when 186 parkrunners showed up in support.

Out of these 186 runners, 39 were first timers, 19 recorded new personal bests (PB) and members of 10 different clubs took part. Heavy rains the previous day had a chance of derailing the run, but the route was cleared at 07:00 by the run director, Dudley Meyer.

Everyone was heartily welcomed by Meyer and the Hermanus parkrun’s birthday cake was ready to be devoured after the race. A group of councillors also took part in the 4th Birthday parkrun. The councillors were Grant Cohen, Christine May, David Botha, Hannie Morgan and Ronald Nutt who referred to themselves as the councillor bus.

Diana Hunter, David Botha, Marianne McHendrie, Carol Wallis, Peter Wallis and Douglas Nowers were the group of pioneers that was there on the first Hermanus parkrun on 31 October 2015. They were all there to share in the birthday celebrations.

Five of the runners were international participants. Glyn Jones (Crane Park, UK), Helen Ross (Crane Park, UK), Sophie Hughes (Orpington, UK), Karen Andrew (Marple, UK) and Catherine Newcombe (Roosevelt Island DC, US). Karen has the distinction that she is a member of the World Tourist group meaning having done park runs in at least 4 different countries. She has done 267 park runs in UK, Denmark, France, USA, Italy and recently added South Africa to the list.

Park runners from other regions in South Africa were also welcomed in our midst, including Desiree Lundstrom from Delta. Desiree is the most experienced runner in the field having done 299 runs.

Congratulations to the first finishers of the celebration run, Ryan Faull (Greenpoint) and Maryna Bingle. Kudos to the leading participants in the junior age categories Danie Alwyn Gouws and Bulela Barnardo.

James Luckhoff and Charlene Behn both completed their 100th run on Saturday and so entering the 100 Club and Lizet Oosthuizen the 50 Club. James, Charlene and Lizet are not only dedicated parkrunners, they are also committed volunteers. James’s volunteer stints include 15 times run director – setting an example to others in fulfilling non-participating volunteer roles.

Alan Paulick, the person running all over the course to save their memories through his photography, completed 175 days of volunteering mostly in the role of photographer, set up and closedown of the event. Alan is the leader of the volunteer group responsible for track maintenance.

Another highlight of the day is that Willie Loedolff, the most senior park runner, completed 100 volunteer days mostly in the role of tailwalker. The encouragement of the tailenders and the inspiration drawn from Oom Willie’s participation is huge. The current male record is held by Jean-Paul Burger who recorded a time of 15:41 on 1 October 2016 (event number 48). The current female record is held by Vicky van der Merwe who recorded a time of 19:34 on 31 December 2016 (event number 61).

The Age Grade course record is held by Mila Scharrighuisen who recorded 86.56% (22:34) on 6 October 2018 (event number 153).

Since the Hermanus parkrun started in 2015 a total of 9 732 participants have completed 51 185 park-runs covering a total distance of 255 925 km. This includes 7 065 new Personal Bests.

A total of 222 individuals have volunteered 3 209 times.

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