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ULTRAMAG Editorial - March 2001

ULTRAMAG Editorial - March 2001

Written by Kev Cassidy

Below is a copy of the Editorial for the March edition of Ultramag, the official publication of the Australian Ultra Runners Association

Although I spend a lot of time putting Ultramag together, I have never actually checked who or how many members of the Australian Ultra Runners exist but I believe it is around the 300 mark. As I send this editorial out via e-mail to a variety of sources, it has occurred to me that it is probably being seen by those who have not yet been a part of AURA so, if I may, I would like to give AURA a plug. Although a lot of ultra news is now available on the web, membership of AURA still offers great value. for an annual subscription of just $30 you receive a quarterly magazine of 92 pages that includes race entry forms, reports, results, press cuttings, training advice, a variety of photos and national rankings of the various ultra distances and a variety of other "newsy" forms of information. The magazine is also a great form of "ready reference" to have on your bookshelf or to read while taking the bus to work etc etc.

Just send 30 Australian dollars to Phil Essam [AURA secretary] at 164 Civic Parade Altona 3018 Australia and become a part of the Australian Ultra Runners Association and help further our sport.

Kevin Cassidy


As ultrarunners, I am sure that we are all the same in thinking, at times, that we do things that make us invincible. February 2nd will always stand as a reminder to us all that there are no guarantees in life. The sudden collapse and death of the great Bryan Smith during the Trans Australia Race is a tragedy that is incomprehensible.......As I write, I still can't believe that this champion athlete, gentleman and friend to all is no longer with us. As a result, this edition of Ultramag has gone beyond its normal 92 pages. The first 20 pages are a collection that covers Bryans entire ultrarunning history, photos, press reports, statistics and records [thanks to Phil Essam for his research]......it is all there, so sit back and read about one of the worlds true gentlemen who also happened to be one of the worlds greatest ultrarunners.

Just in case you have forgotten, the AGM is on March 26th and nomination forms for the AURA committee are contained in this issue. There will also be a telephone hook up during the meeting so anyone can call in. With the technology we have today, you can be a part of the AURA committee no matter what part of Australia you live in.

It was great to see Ultrarunning receive some excellent coverage in the latest "Runners World" magazine. Runners World have tended to ignore the ultra scene over the years but some lobbying by Phil Essam and others seems to have reaped rewards.

A couple of new events on the calendar are the "Lest we Forget" ultra in Queensland. The 84.4km double marathon is modelled on the prestigious Comrades event in South Africa and is already attracting a lot of interest while, also in Queensland, the Australian 48 hour event is going to continue at a new venue on the picturesque Bribie Island.

Changes to Ultramag have been a source of much discussion and basically the format will remain the same but some subtle changes will be noticeable as time goes by. Basically, numerous long stories about the same event are going to be reduced to something along the lines of one report [preferably from the race director] and one other from a competitor and/or helper. If a race director chooses not to write a report then this leaves space for two other stories. Of course we are always welcoming stories and photos that are submitted for publication, particularly photos!!! The mailing address for Ultramag is P.O. box 2786 Fitzroy 3065.

The world class international field of runners in the Trans Australia race have now completed 35 stages, at the time of writing, and have covered 2,465km of their journey of over 4,000km from Perth to Canberra, the race is due to finish on March the 11th. Phil Essam has compiled a race summary to date that appears in this issue.

We have again included a "profile" form that we would love you to reply to ..... basically, we want you to tell us more about yourself. So far, only Max Bogenhuber has replied and you can read his "life story" in this issue.

before signing off, I must mention a throw away line that I included in the last magazine. In reference to the Caboolture 6/12 hour event, I mentioned that I had to do some "chasing around" to get a copy of the entry form. I used this line in frustration at having trouble opening a few e-mail attachments on my "mind of its own" computer!!!!! Unfortunately, it may have sounded as if I was doubting the race organisers [Peter and Lyn Lewis] efficiency. Apologies if this was the impression.

Kevin Cassidy
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