Relays action was close

Katrina Winger enjoying the cold conditions and Sandown Park. Pictures: SUPPLIED.

By Jamie Strudley

A cold, windy Sandown Park was where the action was on Saturday as Athletics Victoria held round 5 of the XCR season. Always an athlete favourite, the road relays around the motor racing circuit provide for fast conditions despite bleak conditions…and it was cold there!

The men’s team, competing in Division 2, ran the division leaders close eventually just missing out on a victory by three seconds (about 15 metres). Led by an outstanding opening leg from Harry Norman, recording the day’s sixth fastest time of 18.29, we knew the team was in a battle with Sandringham from the gun. Strong legs from Max Savill-Bentley, Reuben Johnson and Angus Norman had YRA within two seconds of the dominant Sandringham squad after four of the sixth legs. Tynan Mims ran a blinder to record 18.43 to then give James Laven a 16 second lead going into the final 6.2km leg. JL gave everything he had but could not hold out a strong finish from the Sandringham team. Easily our best team performance of the year and one that will have Sandringham watching over their shoulders in coming rounds.

The second men’s team of Sam Arnold, Luke Hunter, Daniel Groves and Matt Morrison were too good for other teams in their division, winning by a convincing 2.49 minutes while a third team ran exceptionally well to finish seventh in a competitive Div 7 grade.

YRA’s women’s team was missing some of the regular members, but the enthusiasm and commitment of those selected was evident to see. A strong start from Olivia Twining was backed up by an awesome run from Katrina Winger, Bonnie Morris continued her outstanding form to keep the team in the mix heading into the final leg. Rori Jones battled hard to the finish to record her best result of the season, anchoring the team to a surprise third place finish.

The Div 4 women’s team of Lis Coffey, Carolyn Rosenbrock and Erica Purcell ran extremely well to bring the team home in sixth place in their 3 x 6.2km relay event.

YRA’s juniors only had to run one 3.1km lap of the circuit with the women’s U20 and U14 teams both running well. The Under 20 team of Maddie Laven, Brigette Rice and Zoe Clarke finished in a very close fourth place, while the Under 14 girls finished seventh. Unfortunately YRA had some late withdrawals in the men’s U16 team leaving Kimi Tove the only athlete running. Kimi ran a strong leg, finishing in 21st position.

Full results are:

Female Open Div 2 4×6.2km 3rd

Olivia Twining: 22:39, Katrina Winger: 23:33, Bonnie Morris: 26:45, Rori Jones: 27:02

Female Open Div 4 3×6.2km 6th

Elisabeth Coffey: 30:45, Carolyn Rosenbrock: 30:40, Erica Purcell: 37:38

Female Under 20 3×3.1km 4th

Madeline Laven: 11:12, Brigitte Rice: 11:12, Zoe Clarke: 11:56

Female Under 14 3×3.1km 7th

Adele Ellis: 13:38, Lily Clarke: 13:45, Brienna Coffey: 13:50

Men Open Div 2 6×6.2km 2nd

Harry Norman: 18:29, Max Savill-Bentley: 19:22, Reuben Johnson: 20:31, Angus Norman: 20:36, Tynan Mims: 18:43, James Laven: 19:04

Men Open Div 6 4×6.2km 1st

Sam Arnold: 22:08, Luke Hunter: 21:17, Daniel Groves: 21:53, Matthew Morrison: 22:52

Men Open Div 7 4×6.2km 7th

Craig Hewitson: 30:51, Bryan Ackerly: 29:18, Michael Clarke: 24:35, Trent Ashton: 24:49

Men Under 16 3×3.1km 21st

Ilikimi Tove: 12:52

The Saturday morning cross country was at a very cold Margaret Lewis Reserve in Coldstream. School holidays and the cold conditions meant lower numbers but no less effort of enthusiasm. Great to see everyone improving and earning more chocolate frogs for a course PB.

Next Saturday is round 11 at Elizabeth Bridge, Kilsyth. See you there from 8.45am for warm ups! Anyone wanting to help set up please arrive earlier.

Results from round 9 at Lilydale Lake were:


Daisy Murphy 3.03; Maisie McLeod 3.23; Silas Dawson 3.23; Emily Cooke 3.36; Pippa Stark 4.1


Ivy Ingle 5.23; Elliott Dawson 5.56; Angus Congreve 6.09; Jasper Dean 6.23; Harper Higham 6.38; Isla Higham 6.39; Aaron Zuo 6.55; Taylor Cox 7.07; Willliam Hastewell 7.27


Milly Hall 6.41; Victoria James 7.01; Etta Thoma 7.43; Tillie Sommers 7.52; Georgia Cooke 7.59; Iola MacKay 8; Tahlia Dawson 8.3; Winter Anderson-Bonsor 8.36


Theodore Lewis 8.53; Ilikimi Tove 8.54; Xander Sommers 9.18; Hugo Gibbs 9.27; Caitlyn McKerlie 9.42; Lexi Aders 9.44; Tess Hewatt 10.12; Pippa Congreve 10.32; Dominic Nealon 10.45; Alice Sabo 10.59; Zuri Dawson 11.35; Kirsten McKerlie 11.47; Eamon MacKay 11.54; Meadow Anderson-Bonsor 12.14; Ashleigh Christian 13.49


Tim Anderson-Bonsor 12.57; Brienna Coffey 14.06; Mackenzie Graham 14.22; Adele Ellis 14.32; Bryan Ackerly 14.32; Tori Kincaid 14.44; Elizabeth Coffey 15.53; Bradley McMeeken 17.11; Bethany Vine 17.19; Charlotte Strachan 17.27; Archie Budin 12.34

Tess H competed in the latest round of the Victorian Road Walking series on Saturday 22 June. Tess, competing in the Under 11 Girls 1500m walk, finished in an outstanding seventh place, recording 10.47. Nice work Tess.

Cross country training for all club members is at Morrison Reserve on Tuesday evenings from 5.30pm and Thursdays from 5.30pm at the Victoria Road Primary School gym. Yarra Ranges Athletics welcomes and encourages all athletes of any age or ability. New members and anyone interested in trialling are always welcome

Go to or or email for information about events and registration.

For information on training, how to join or trial, photos, results and updated news, visit the website at or check us out on Facebook. Run, Jump, Throw…too easy!