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ULTRAMAG Editorial - June 1999

ULTRAMAG Editorial - June 1999

Written by Kev Cassidy
Is 1999 really half over? Time seems to disappear quickly as we all get older. Speaking of getting older, Tony Rafferty recently celebrated his 60th birthday and we have included some photos from a small get together at his home in Harkaway. Now retired, Tony is involved in promoting the Australian Six Day race at Colac where he hopes to restore the event to something along the lines of the glory days of the mid 80's.

As has been mentioned before, AURA has had to increase its subscription fees by $5 to $30 which is the first increase for many years, a quick look at the financial statement in this issue should tell you the sad financial state of things.

On the positive side, The AURA Anhual General Meeting was held on Sunday 23-May-99 at the completion of the 50 mile track championships, this years race was held at the Newport athletic track in conjunction with the Sri Chinmoy Fitness Festival and it was a great success. The festival consists of numerous events including a marathon, half marathon, duathion and numerous other shorter events and it created a great atmosphere with hundreds of competitors all taking time to watch and encourage the 50 mile runners.

Also of note is the completion of Phil Essam's book on the history of the Westfield Sydney to Melbourne race.

It was good to see the emergence of some new talent in the ultra world with Mike Wheatley finishing as the first Australian at the recent World 100km Championships in a time of 7.46 in his first attempt at the distance while Sandra Timmer-Arends took 20th place in the women's event with a time of 8:19.

By the time you read this, two of our members will both have started their solo attempts to run around Australia. Good luck to both Pat Farmer and Gary Parsons I have also managed to find an interesting profile on Simahin Pierce in the New Zealand Ultra magazine Although he is now hiding on the other side of the Tasman, Simahin was a regular face on the Australian ultra scene for many years.

Of course, I could not finish without a mention of the most important race on the calendar [even bigger than the Sydney Olympics!!!!!], I am speaking, of course, about the Frankston to Portsea event where the 27th annual "race" took place in April and, as per usual, the highlights, lowlights and "odd" lights were plentiflul [even Hookie managed to finish!!

Kevin Cassidy
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