Bill Burke Classic

Report by Danny Hawksworth and thanks for his planning to make it happen.

The lady presenting the trophies to Chris Rayment (handicap winner) and Nicholas Smith (fastest time) is Renus Burke, legendary coach Bill’s daughter in law. Thanks to Bill’s grandson Michael for the photos.

Saturday the 9th April saw the 10th running of the Bill Burke Classic.  A pleasant 19C day greeted competitors, as 23 starters made it to Aberfeldie to take part, equalling last year’s record field.  This year was the first year that we welcomed members of the recently formed Red and Black running group, a recreational running group who meet at Aberfeldie to train twice a week.  Coached by Mark Carey, this group has been steadily growing in size; and some of them we hope will register and become full club members of Athletics Essendon for the XCR16 season.

With parts of Aberfeldie Park being closed due to construction work, the usual 2km lap was unavailable, so a different course consisting of two x 1700m loops and 1 x 600m loop was used.  At the race briefing our special guests Michael and Renus Burke were introduced, then the handicap marks were read out and we were on our way. 

In a repeat of last year, Matthew Goodger and Nick Smith were our frontmarker and backmarker, with all other runners starting somewhere in between.  Matt held the lead for about 3km until he was caught by Chris Rayment just before the final 600m lap.  Nick Smith was unable to make up the 7 second gap on Muse Tesema for quite a while.  It was at least the half way mark before he caught Damien Bruneau and Hayelom Dawit to start making his way through the field.  After both hills were complete, the three backmarkers started catching the runners in front, with only Rayment being able to hold them off.  It was to be Rayment who crossed the finishing line first, with Smith finishing only 17 seconds behind, with Muse Tesema finishing in third place a further 7 seconds back.  Special mention should go to Damien Bruneau and Sandra Prosenica.  Both are building for a marathon and used this run as part of a much longer run. 

We thank Barbara Augustin for being our starter and getting all these results in.  Also, Kylie Buckley and Sarah Keating helped with marshalling on the last lap and keeping the finishers in order.  After the event, presentations were held.  Many of the runners will be competing in the Jells Park relays next Saturday, so this was an ideal hitout on a tough course.

Full results follow:

Name                           Start                Finish              Actual time

Matthew Goodger      0:07                 23:14               23:07

Natalie Morgan           1:30                 23:53               22:23

Mel Hardiman             1:56                 24:17               22:21

Sue Hastings               2:24                 23:25               21:01

David Jones                2:56                 27:32               24:36

Lisa Gunn                   3:29                 23:10               19:41

Stephen Murphy         3:33                 23:02               19:29

Duncan Knox              3:39                 23:31               22:52

John Cooper                3:58                 22:42               18:44

Christian Knox            4:08                 23:28               19:20

Chris Rayment            5:09                 21:48               16:39 (1st)

Aaron Heaney             5:40                 22:46               17:06

Ruby Ali                     6:08                 24:21               18:13

Mark Carey                 6:24                 22:40               16:16

Brian Anderson           6:36                 22:27               15:51

Sandra Prosenica         6:36                 23:41               17:05

Danny Hawksworth    8:07                 22:55               14:48

Jeff Jones                    8:11                 22:26               14:13

Hayelom Dawit           8:12                 22:49               14:37

Damien Bruneau         8:22                 22:34               14:12

Asmelash Tesema        8:33                 22:25               13:52

Muse Tesema              9:01                 22:12               13:11

Nicholas Smith            9:08                 22:05               12:57