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  • Captain Neil

From The Captain's Table, June 2018

Hi everybody, and here we are mid-year already. It is so pleasing to see that we have had so many visitors to the Club over the last few dark and cold winter months. I am more impressed that a lot of these people have joined us. Welcome to Phillipa, David and Jason. Just goes to show that the Club can still grow even through winter.

I am also heartened to see new members making great friends within the Club and the newish Club members also making them so welcome. To me, great friendship and communication in a Club is the best way to foster a togetherness and to keep a Club healthy. Making new friends is not easy for all people, so thank you to those who are reaching out and embracing new members and guests and making this such a great Club.

It is with sadness that I say goodbye to Ettienne, the Frenchman who has been coming along to the club and running with Norm. Ettienne is just about to get his commercial pilot’s licence and then heads back to France, though he may come back if he gets a job.

We are now in the capable hands of Vice-President Gary, as president Norm has gone back to the UK for a few weeks to catch up with family. Gary is very capable and can help you sort any requests you may have or help with any issues.

Dinner night for June is on 28th and will be hosted by Group 1.

It was great to see a big turnout at the Mount Run on what was a very cold and wet day. Anyone that finished that event would have to be considered a committed champion. I am especially impressed with the new boots Val, Sonja and Kate, for their first 10 km in hard conditions.

Also out and about was Rod doing the Christchurch half and lucky to get home before being snowed in.

Then there was Sue and Lynda doing the Rainbow Mountain at Rotorua. From what I hear this was a hard slog of an off road event.

Rebecca did the inaugural Whitianga 10 km, Kevin flew our flag at a much warmer event in Noosa, and Val did the Hamilton Tough Guy/Gal mud run.

All in all, what a committed and adventurous Club we are, spreading ourselves geographically wide in the name of fun and fitness.

My thanks to conveners, Gary and Annette for their work in organising the Sunday Club run at Arapuni, and for the great skills and time of Chef Pat on the barbecue. This was another great event with plenty of photos taken for the competition. These Club events have been great fun in places that many of us would not normally get to. The next Sunday outing is Sunday, July 8, with details yet to be finalised.

The Club Open Day we had on Saturday 16 June, I am pleased to say was a great success. Thanks to all those members present at Park Run to create our profile and to those at the Club House that helped out. Special thanks to Gary and Lex for convening this Open Day

Information Table – For the newer members in the club, we have a table set up with event flyers and several HRR club books. These include:

  • Records Book – We encourage members to fill in their events and time (This helps the HHR board to decide on who is – The athlete of the month)

  • Events Book – This book is for putting events in that you are going to be doing in upcoming months. It is helpful to see who is going to what and also for possible car pooling

  • Mays Kz – A new book for the table to record how many kms you have done for the week. You can track off your Garmin or fit bit or just brain calculations

Events Coming Up:

  • Wellington Marathon - Saturday 1 July - looks like there is good Club support for this event.

  • Gold Coast Marathon - Saturday 1 July - a warmer option for some members

The club wishes those traveling to these events all the best

  • Ekiden – Saturday 13 October – calling all new members, check this out. It is a relay event consisting of teams of 6, doing 8km approximately each. Speed is not essential, but you are encouraged to dress up in a party type way. If you are keen, talk with Club Captain Neil or VP Gary about being part of a team.

Just remember – The light at the end of the tunnel may well be – A fellow HRR team member

Club Notes

Club jackets and club running shirts: Gary informs me that we will be putting another order in shortly. The sizing chart is at the Club house and all orders can be made through Gary.

HMC Solstice Run: President Norm has mentioned that we have been invited to Hamilton Marathon Clinic Tuesday 26 June at 5-30pm for their Solstice Run – It is a poker run event and then finishes at their club rooms for Christmas cake and mulled wine $2.00 sign on

Subscriptions: If you do not have the current HRR membership card you may not have paid your sub. This can be paid to our account: 03 1555 016275 00 (don’t forget to put your name in the reference field)

Tuesday Runs: President Norm has mentioned that if you are wanting a run or walk on a Tuesday night we are welcome at Hamilton Marathon Clinic and HMC are welcome here on Thursday nights

Club Photo: Close off 28 June – Have you ordered yours??

Club Raffle: At the Bar, just about all sold

Hamilton Road Runners Club History

Notes by Kerin Buttimore

The club was founded in 1980 as part of the YMCA in Pembroke St. When the YMCA closed, the runners relocated to the Yacht Club in 1986, which was appropriate because of the letter Y in the name, and became the “Y Road Runners”. (The Hamilton Marathon Clinic also was formed from YMCA members prior to this.) There was a huge upsurge in “jogging” in that era, throughout NZ.

The uniform was navy shorts and a yellow string singlet with a front top section in white cotton, string neck and straps edged with yellow. On the white section were the words “Hamilton” (in solid red) with a very large solid red Y below it, broken by the red-edged white letters of “Road Runners” spread across it. The back was entirely yellow with solid red “Hamilton New Zealand” in 2 lines at the top. Later versions of this style had the Y removed from the front.

Barry Smith designed a roadrunner emblem. He checked with Walt Disney that its use didn’t cause any contravention, and it was used on various articles of club clothing, signage and certificates for many years.

In late 1999 a totally new and plainer singlet in more modern fabric was designed. It was solid bright yellow with navy arm and neck trim, with navy “Hamilton” on the front with a stylised writing of Road Runners” in navy beneath. The back had “Hamilton New Zealand” in navy. Later versions were more golden than yellow.

In 2013 the really stylish current charcoal singlet replaced the yellow one, but retained yellow, this time in the trimming and the large “New Zealand” below a white “Hamilton” on the back. A stylised turquoise and yellow runner in action on the front and ROADRUNNERS (all one word this time) in a modern font completed the design, which has received favourable comment from many people. Now that they have been upgraded to a much lighter and more efficient fabric, they are even better. Each of these different designs can be seen in the annual photos on the club wall. As can be noted from those photos, club membership has varied over the years.

The club withdrew from affiliation to Athletics NZ in 2015 because most runners were not interested in being registered, and an unreasonable charge for EVERY member would be made by ANZ if even 1 member of the club was to be registered.

Road Runners held an annual half marathon from Porritt Stadium to Horsham Downs and back, for many years. It was sponsored by ATA Travel and later by Medic Aid, both companies which no longer exist. It then shifted to the lake, but competitors soon tired of the numerous circuits they had to do to cover the distance, and it was shifted to the Ferry Bank for quite a number of years. Now the Hamilton Half Marathon, it became too big for the club to manage and a trust was formed, taking it out of our hands and shifted to the Hamilton Gardens and later to its present Flagstaff Park. Prior to a dispute, we were offered a paid contract each year to provide marshals and to place signage on the course. Now free of the marshalling we all have the opportunity to enter and participate in this well-organised local event.

One year we held a unique event, the “Airport Mile” where the runners ran the length of the Hamilton Airport runway.

Each November/December we held the Road Runners 10 Miler, which was open to the public - a 16 km course around the lake area. This was later replaced when we took over the Ohaupo Rugby Club’s 12km event.

The Summer Series grew out of three clubs combining once per year to provide a more significant event and larger prize than the two separate events held previously, namely HMC’s Blueberry Run, and Road Runners’ Ohaupo Rugby Club Race – (a Thursday evening 12km event). We changed ours to Sunday morning, to match the others, and later shifted back and revamped it to become the Lake Run. The third event was newly formed from what had been Te Awamutu’s previous invitation (to clubs) training run held at Kakepuku in preparation for the Rotorua Marathon. Gallaghers, and later Harcourts sponsored the Summer Series for many years, before the 3 clubs themselves resorted to offer equal money for what was the travel prize. Our event is now the Glenview River Run.

No longer held, The Beast Duathlon (Run/Cycle/Run) was Tim Saunders’ “baby” and it was Road Runners’ mid-winter event for the public. The course was from Sapphire Springs (Katikati) and over the Kaimai Range via Thompson’s Track, and all the way to our club. Later, to cope with traffic regulations, it finished at Porritt Stadium. Many club members had a go at it over the years – covered in mud from head to toe.

A team relay from Lake St in Cambridge to Dey St in Hamilton, via Hautapu and Matangi, was held annually. Later for traffic reasons this was changed to a relay around Horsham Downs. When THIS became too dangerous, we shifted to the Taitua Arboretum, and after 2000 this was named The Viv Garlick Relay in memory of Viv who died in January that year. It is now called the Memorial Relay, in memory of all past members who have died. Our annual club photo is taken on this event day. Originally it was taken in the YMCA, and then in the YWCA Hall (-and before 8am, because any later, and the sun through the window would make everyone squint!) The photo shifted to Taitua after this, and was taken in the little amphitheatre. Now we are photographed outside the clubrooms.

At the end of each year we participate in an interclub relay which since 1993 has been named in memory of Percy Lawn a past member of both Te AMC and HMC, who collapsed and died at the event the year before. Hosting the event revolves around the clubs in turn.

Many HRR members joined parkrun when it was introduced in October 2013, and whilst some new membership has been gained from our association with parkrun, the clash of timing has unfortunately diminished the Saturday morning group runs to just a handful of people. This was once our main training session.

Some members attended a group which was determined to once again set up a marathon in Hamilton. In 2016 The Kirikiriroa Marathon was born, and quite a few members of our club completed their first marathon. The club operates a water station at Anne Street each year, as well as providing marshals and competitors.

Many Road Runners have participated in the Rotorua Marathon each year, and we have members who have received “Survivors’ Club” T-shirts in recognition of reaching various milestones with the number of events they have completed. There are photos on the club wall of those who have competed.

Rotorua’s Ekiden Relay has really jelled with our club members, and like the Rotorua Marathon has become a “stay there and party”event.

Tim Saunders sometimes organised “away trips” for the club to Karangahake and Mt Karioi, amongst others. In recent times Gary Fieldes and others have arranged outings on a Sunday to interesting and runnable scenic spots around the Waikato.

Over the years the types of events which members have entered has expanded greatly, and there has been a noticeable increase in interest in off-road and endurance races.

The monthly Meal Night was introduced to the club in the 1990s by members Chris and Maureen Metcalfe, who did all the catering. In 2002, the committee discussed how to share the load. The group system was eventually brought in, originally based on the Saturday running groups. It has continued in a similar way to this day. Occasionally quiz nights have been held.

The 30th Anniversary of the club was held at the Yacht Club on Saturday 20 February 2010. Past members were researched, located and invited to the morning run and the seated 3-course dinner that night. It was a huge success. Hot Foot Award, May Athletes of the Month:

Lynda Brahne

Neil Crocker

Wayne Reynolds For awesome achievements at Rotorua Marathon

From the Bush

1 July - Tauhara Trail Run Taupo

29 July - Auckland Xterra – Waiuku

4 August - We Run The Forest - Rotorua

6 October - Cape Kidnappers Trail Run

3 November - Taniwha Trail Run - Kinleith

24 November - Waitetuna Windmill Off Road

8 December - Karioi Trail Run – Raglan

The Far-Looker

26 June Hamilton Marathon Clinic – Solstice Run

28 June HRR Dinner Night – Group 1

1 July Wellington Marathon

1 July Gold Coast Marathon

7 July 4 Seasons Ann St Hamilton

8 July HRR Sunday Run

26 July HRR Dinner Night – Group 2

4 August Hoka One Taupo Half

5 August Brisbane Marathon

12 August HRR Sunday Run

25 August Mt Maunganui Half

30 August HRR Dinner Night – Group 3

8 September Whangamata Fun Run

16 September Cambridge Half

22 September Tauranga Int Marathon

21 to 25 September Project Raro – HRR International

29 September Blue Lake Challenge Rotorua

30 September ** Hamilton Half

30 September Note to self Daylight Saving Starts

13 October Ekiden Relay

28 October Auckland Marathon

28 October Morrinsville Fun Run

4 November New York Marathon

4 November Tauranga City to Surf

17 November Queenstown Marathon

18 November Toi’s Challenge Whakatane

18 November Round the Bridges

25 November Percy Lawn Challenge, Te Awamutu

9 March 2019 Kirikiriroa Marathon / Relay

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