Hill City-University Blue dominates relay

Hill City-University Blue runners (clockwise from front) Liberty McIntyre-Reet (20), Lila Rhodes ...
Hill City-University Blue runners (clockwise from front) Liberty McIntyre-Reet (20), Lila Rhodes (14), Liliana Braun (20) and Zara Geddes (16) celebrate victory in the annual Lovelock Relay at the University Oval on Saturday. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH
Zara Geddes and Liliana Braun bookended a dominant performance from the Hill City-University women at the annual Lovelock Relay on Saturday.

The pair ran the two fastest times of the race to lead the club’s Blue team to an impressive victory.

Geddes started with a brisk 5min 1sec in the 4x1500m relay, and when Liberty McIntyre-Reet (5min 33sec) and youngster Lila Rhodes (5min 27sec) had completed their legs, HCU Blue held a 15sec advantage over Caversham.

Braun then flew home in 5min flat to seal a combined time of 21min 1sec for her team, a whopping 1min 42sec clear of second-placed Caversham.

Becky De La Harpe impressed with a 5min 9sec second leg for Caversham, while Florence Reynolds opened with a 5min 15sec for a Leith team that finished third.

Catherine Lund (Ariki) had the other cracking run of the day, an opening 5min 8sec for Ariki.

Hill City-University was foiled in its attempt to win a seventh straight men’s title.

The Christchurch-based Whippets team made the trip south and, as the name suggests, ran very fast.

David Lee posted the fastest individual time, a stunning 3min 57sec in the fourth leg, as the Whippets posted a time of 24min 37sec in the six-man event.

It was a solid attempt at the record time of 24min 12sec that has stood for 51 years.

HCU Blue put up a good fight to finish second in 26min 39sec, a time highlighted by Ben Wall’s brilliant 3min 59sec in the opening leg.

There was a ding-dong battle in the masters men’s race.

The Leith team of Danny Baillie, Neale McLanahan, Gallien Chanalet-Quercy and Richard Campbell posted a time of 19min 36sec, just 16sec ahead of the HBU team of Simon Rhodes, Mark Geddes and Elliot and Oliver O’Sullivan.

Aly Craigie (5min 33sec) ran a swift anchor leg to lead HCU to victory in the masters women’s event, and Angus Loe ran a sizzling 4min 39sec in the two-team secondary schoolboy race.

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