Hill-free suite of races returns next weekend

Merrilee Williams
Merrilee Williams
One of the regular events on the local athletics calendar is set to return next weekend.

The Hill Free Half Marathon, hosted by Hill City-University athletics club, is back after a one-year hiatus in 2016.

Not having anyone able to organise it last year, the event took a year off.

However, club president Howden Finnie said secretary Merrilee Williams had picked up the task of organising this year's event and it would be held on Sunday, October 8.

He said she had put a lot of work and effort into it and it was running well.

There were a lot of volunteers to help, and the race had been planned right down to the drink stations.

The event would also double as the Otago Half Marathon Championships.

That meant the course in Outram would not change from previous years, ensuring it was certified to be classed as a championship event.

It also meant that any records set would be official.

Finnie was unsure of the exact numbers, but said entries were going well and the response to the return had been positive.

He expected those entries to continue, as people often entered closer to the race date.

In a change from previous years, there would be no race-day entries, and a late entry fee would apply after October 1.

Alongside the half marathon there would be a 10km run and walk, as well as a 2km race for children 12 and under.

The half marathon begins on Formby St and the other races start on Huntly Rd. All of them finish at the West Taieri Rugby Club.

The course was originally made by the Presbyterian club in the 1970s.

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