Tag Archive for: NRR

National Road Relays 2017 Results

Keep reading down the page for the Hawks official team results or click here to go directly to the results.

Overview report by Mudlark (Don Willoughby)

WHEW!!!! Hawks are the top club in road running and champions of New Zealand. What an amazing weekend in Rotorua and a huge thanks to John Crane and Glenn Sexton for their efforts throughout the year to get nine teams to the start line.  111 teams took part and it is a reflection of what great spirit the club has that even at the last minute we had runners who were upgraded to a higher team and managed to produce outstanding runs. Maureen Leonard was a classic case taking out the fastest lap on her leg. Since 1999 when I was race director on a new course based on Cambridge the Hawks have featured in the top 3 ranking most years. That year the Masters Women won and the Junior Women were third. And now follows a brief history of the club’s record as I know it.  In 2000 the event was held on the Motueka Nelson course and MW won again while the JW were first and we were second club overall. As Brett Addison points out it took 17 more years for our JW to win again. 2001 was Takahe Akaroa and the MW team kept on producing wins and one memory I have of that year was the huge skin flaps on Bridget Ray’s feet after a flying downhill leg. Our JM led by the Robertson twins won to great excitement and we were again second club. In 2002 and 2003 the event was based on Fielding and our MW, JW and JM did us proud with medals but still the top club eluded us. It  was Nelson again in 2004 and no gold medals but once again MW 2nd, JM 2nd and JW 3rd produced top runs  and we were 3rd in the club comp. 2005 the event returned to Takahe Akaroa with no wins but a 3rd in the top club. Then followed Feilding,  Timaru and Mosgiel and while we were knocking on the top spot never clinched it. 2009 on the Banks Peninsula we finally “knocked the @#$% off”  with MW in first, JW second and MM third. Finally we had done it and a very emotional Don accepted the gold medal. The next year in Inglewood we won again while Hunua 2011 with no golds but plenty of minor placings like seconds to SW, MM and MW we were second ranked club. The next  four years I was not fully involved due to poor health but we were still up there. Last year in Rotorua we finished 1st equal and finally in 2017 we cracked it again. What a tribute to those who led the club so ably this year and kept the members focus on aiming for Rotorua. Winning a national relay is all about having every member running to their best on the day. In Rotorua we had replacements in each team that won a medal  but they still produced their best. The fact that we had eight runners who scored fastest lap in their race was a measure of how the club has real quality. Nancy Jiang, Marion Millward, Maureen Leonard, Aimee Ferguson, Grace Ritchie, Samantha Corbett, Emerson Deverell and John Crane all ran the quickest times for their lap which was brilliant running. I was privileged to follow and assist Wendy Harris with the Junior Women’s team as a passionate Hawks supporter. Aimee Ferguson gave this team a brilliant start and was 3 minutes ahead after the first lap and this lead was built on successively by Grace Ritchie, Jemima Antoniazzi, Samantha Corbett and Emerson Deverell which meant Charli Miller brought the team home in first  more than 7 minutes ahead of second placed Wellington. Giving time splits and encouragement throughout each was a privilege and a thrill for the old fella. I was even happier at the finish when our Masters Women came home in first spot and then our senior women took second behind North Harbour Bays. Pens and rule books came out and Glenn did some hasty calculations. Were two golds a silver and a bronze enough to be top club? I had been given the word early on that we had won but had to keep a lid on it until the prize giving. I am very proud to be a Hawk and viewed  the whole day as a wonderful running experience in the club’s history. The fish and chips and red wine back in Cambridge tasted top stuff on Saturday night as Rae and I reflected on a super day.

Junior Women’s NRR
Report by Wendy Harris

I was privileged enough to have the opportunity to drive the Junior Women again this year and was not the only one who felt like we had some unfinished business after last years race.  It was clear from the beginning that although the girls didn’t want to put too much pressure on themselves they were a team that believed they could win!  And win they did.
Aimee Ferguson was our starter with her last words to me being “I have to remember not to start with the boys and do my own thing”.  Obviously that went out the window as when we saw her 1km in she was the lead girl and was running with the boys.  A strategy that worked anyway as she led the JW race from the start and ran 2 minutes under her estimated time to put the team into a healthy 1:20 minute lead.
Grace Ritchie set off up the hill and managed to keep with one of the JM teams and run a really gutsy second leg looking determined and focused all the way.  Lucky the team was well organised in getting to the changeover in time as Grace was also 2 minutes faster than her estimated time.  The lead was extended to 2 minutes and Jemima Antoniazzi, our youngest runner at only 14 took off down the hill with those long legs of hers flying.  At times she was going so fast around the bends that she could hardly stay close to the edge of the road.  At the changeover the baton was passed to Sam Corbett and the lead had extended to 3 minutes.  Sam was pumped and ready to go, focused and prepared to keep the team in front.  Sam’s run was solid and consistent from the word go, she did a PB and gained another minute on Wellington the team behind.  Emerson Deverell then took the baton for the team with Don Willoughby hot on her tail calling out encouragement all the way.  By this point it was extremely windy with big trucks racing past making it not the most pleasant experience for Emerson.  She never gave up and pushed through until the end was finally in sight.  Her first words were “I’m so sorry I’ve let the team down”.  I think she might have been hallucinating a little after giving it everything she had as she had gained a massive lead over Wellington extending the time difference to 7 minutes.  Charli Miller was the last runner for the team with the longest lap to take the team through to the finish.  She was lucky to be in the team due to having a broken arm but complete with cast in tow she headed off with only one job to do – get to the end in front of all the other teams.  Driving past Charli running strong the girls allowed themselves to believe that short of a disaster befalling Charli the win would be theirs. 
Hamilton City Hawks Junior Women – Gold Medal Winners – National Champions.
Congratulations to all the girls for racing so well, giving it their absolute all, showing great sportsmanship and for generally being awesome.  A special mention to Lillie Harris for her great photography, time keeping and navigation skills.  Also a big thank you to the support crew out there on the course, Dean, Megan, Grant, Kevin and the man with the famous milkshakes Don Willoughby.

Senior Men’s NRR
Report by Lance Brew

With managing to be able to get two senior men’s teams fulled with senior men without having to steal masters or female runners there was some excitement around what might unfold for the Senior Men 1 team who were in the A grade.

With Malcolm King leading us of on the 1st leg he was really wanting to keep us in contact with teams ahead of us going pass him at  around 3.5 km mark he looked relaxed but with the hill to come what was going to unfold. Well from all accounts he gave it his all up then down the other side to come in very wobbly and with us screaming for him to sprint in, it was very apparent he had gassed himself and was spent. Making it to the change to hand over to Jai Davies Campbell who shot off like a bullet to run down the guys ahead. Leaving us to deal with a very stuffed Malcolm who we had to leave at the back of his car and we were of to see what Jai was doing he was going just fine gaining in on the Wellington Scottish runner and just as Jai was about over take him he stopped to do his lace up.

Jai smashed his leg gaining some good time on two teams in front to hand over to myself and give me something to chase down and extend on behind. With each km ticking over I could see I was clawing back time on the 2 runners ahead of me. I know going up the hill to the change I was going to pick at least 1 off and get really close to another. Theunis was there waiting and went out quickly having some good competion just a head and Matt Scott chasing behind. To some of us in the van we were starting to think we may of put him on the wrong leg but no he worked really hard to keep a gap on Matt behind but also got us really close to Tauranga Ramblers which got some excitement going as now there was a race on for top Waibop team. Giving the batton over to Russ at the top of the hill a bit of excitement ensued as what was Russ going to do to this leg specially the down hill section by the time we caught up to him he was already past Tauranga and making some great headway although Alice and B(dog) who were our chief supporters started to worry that he was hurting himself and Alice had to grab a beer to calm her down. Russ got to the bottom of the hill and set of to bring home a good run with some little white lies by us in the van saying it all down hill from here and flat we forgot about the last hill (sorry Russ) which he smashed and brought it in for Rodrigo to head out.

Rodrigo set out like he was going to kill his leg and extended the gap on the teams behind for the first time in the day if was now more of Rodrigo doing a time trial and holding our place and seeing if he could take time outa  Christchurch Avon to give Jacob a chance. Rodrigo got over the top of the hill and set about trying to pick up the pace down to hand over to Jacob who was just like Rodrigo of consulidating our place in the race. Looking really smooth he ran a great leg to bring us home in 7 placing.

Well Done guys that was one fun team to be involved in and Thanks again to Alice and B for been great supporters

Senior women NRR adventures
Report by Celicia Flori
The morning of the relays started off pretty smoothly. We all met at 7.30am at the lodge with no delays other than Malesa mysteriously disappearing for a 5 long minutes. We then left for the start line to see the first team take off at 8am. We would not start till 8.45 and in that time we sorted out our race numbers, running order, etc. While I was pinning my number to my singlet Kovo looked at me quizzically and said “ I don’t think that is the logo of the front of the singlet” I looked down and indeed it wasn’t: I had been wearing my singlet back to front the whole time. Good start of the day 🙂
The first runner in our team was Kovo. She run in fourth place for some time right behind the 3rd girl, but then, as she put it, “got tired of the view” so took off and got us to 3rd place with a good lead. Our second runner was Malesa which, for the first time in 3 years, was not sick on the day of NRR, and it showed!! She got a PR 5km and, with a 56 seconds improvement over last year’s time, closed the gap with the second girl by over a minute.
Next up was Dawn, she had a good solid run and kept us in third place with a good lead. The first section of leg 3 can’t be followed by van so we didn’t see Dawn for a little while. During this time me and Malesa had a cool down/warm up jog and were surprised at how badly the course was marked until we got to a motorway and realised that we were not on the course at all! Malesa’s excuse was that she had just run her guts out, my excuse…well lets not dwell on that.
I was up next after Dawn. Given that the distance, how did Mike Harris put it, “had a zero less than what I am used to”, I think I did ok. I took 39 seconds off last years time and LITERALLY ran my guts out.. I have to admit that if the course had been a tad bit longer it would not have been a pleasant ride in the van for any of us. Given my state the baton change between me and Nancy was hilarious. I had eyed the portaloos even before the change over and all I wanted to do was get to them as fast as possible, so much so that I went a little too fast and almost ran over Nancy after handing her the baton. Luckily I veered in time and headed for the cones instead….
Nancy’s run was amazing as usual. She took two minutes off the second girl and got us to 2nd place! We heard a lot of ”who the hell is this girl” from the other team..
Then came the turn of Veronica. She struggled a bit at the start due to stitches but then, thanks to Graham’s great suggestion of “open your legs”, she kept 2nd place with a good lead. The final leg was run by our runner of the day Olivia. She ran an amazing final leg and opened the gap from the third place by a few minutes. She said she ran scared the whole time thinking the other runner was right behind her. We didn’t tell her that in fact she was miles away…good strategy team!
After all these adventures we managed to take home Silver!
Great work you all!
Each time I do the relays I am always impressed by the comradery and team work that goes on. For a great chunk of the day we are all out there supporting each other, encouraging each other and giving everything you have to the team. I feel it some how makes you a better you and it is why I find this event so beautiful and inspiring. So proud of you all and of being part of this team and of the best running club in NZ!! We got a trophy to prove it now 🙂

Masters Men 50+ NRR
Report by John Crane

An early rise for the old men .. first race start at 8:00am.

We’d done our research … realistically we knew that the two Wellington clubs were a lot stronger and were likely to take the first two places … so it was looking like we’d be in a three way battle for bronze with Auckland City Athletic and our old mates Papanui Toc H. But then again … anything can happen on the day!

After so many years of running the National Road Relays this was the first time I’d ever done the first leg. I’d been worried about a back injury, but thankfully all went well and we were on our way, with a narrow lead over Wellington Scottish at the first changeover. Chris Keith up next. The big guns from Wellington were starting to fire, but Chris ran a great leg and kept them very much in our sights.

Third leg was Oscar, keeping us in the the battle for bronze with a gutsy run and uphill finish. By leg four the two Wellington teams were having their own battle up front. Auckland had got ahead of us and Papanui were putting us under pressure. Kevin put in a fantastic effort and kept us very much in touch with Auckland in the chase for bronze. Then it was Chris Smith … just a week after running the Rarotonga 32km race. Somehow he’d managed to recover from that and put in a huge performance. In fourth place still, opening the gap on Papanui and still just over two minutes away from Auckland. Leg six was Garry. After many years of running relays with Garry we know what to expect … he puts everything into it, and this year was no exception, running hard out at the start to cut the gap to the Auckland team and holding on grimly to the end of his leg. Never a pretty sight!

Last leg … great to see Tony Olsen back running the NRR after a few years out. He had over two minutes to make up on top Auckland runner Alastair Prangnell, and had to keep an eye on Papanui who were over two minutes behind, but had Richard Bennett on their last leg (and I know how that feels from about 15 years ago!).

Then a bit of drama in the battle up front between Wellington Harriers and Wellington Scottish. The Scottish leg six runner had come to grief, collapsing about 500m short of the handover, resulting in a seven minute penalty and throwing things up in the air for the minor medals. Tony went after Auckland and ate into their lead from the start … it was going to be close. In the meantime we were trying to work out if Wellington Scottish were likely to finish more than seven minutes ahead of us. We gave Tony one last boost of support then into the vans to the finish, fighting the traffic and lights we arrived just in time to see Auckland holding on to third place over the line, with an exceptional run from Tony to put us just over a minute behind in fourth. We still couldn’t work out whether we’d finish ahead of Wellington Scottish once their penalty had been applied … but then the results were announced, confirming us in 3rd place. It never feels quite right to benefit from another team’s misfortune … but that’s all part of the drama of relay running, and it was good to hear later on that the Wellington runner was OK after a short spell in Rotorua hospital.

A great result for the old fellas, and at least we managed one medal for the men . We also realised that all those years of close battles in the MM40 grade that started 10 years ago against Wellington Scottish and Papanui are starting to come round again … same old battlers, just 10 years older! Bring on 2018 in Akaroa!

The Very Hungry (for victory) Relay Team
Report by Kirsten

In the light of the moon a little MW relay team lay on their beds wondering what the next day would bring.

In the morning the sun came up and ‘pop!’, out came the team, hungry for victory.

On leg one Kirsten ran her best, she ate through one runner.

But they were still hungry….

On leg two Helen ran fast and well, eating through TWO runners.

But they were still hungry….

On leg three Karen ran consistently and well, chewing through THREE runners

But they were still hungry…

On leg FOUR Marion the legend got them into second place

But they were still hungry….

On leg five Katy machined in a very quick time through FIVE runners

But they were still hungry….

On leg six Maureen ran reliably well, eating through one Olympic, one composite, one Lake City, one New Brighton MM, one more composite, one Wellington Scottish and (most importantly and truthfully)…..one Wellington Harrier!

That leg we all had a (nervous) stomach ache!

The next runner was Bridget Ray and she did a stunning run in a high pressure situation.

And after that the team felt much better.

Now they weren’t hungry anymore, as they suspected that something great was about to happen.

However they had to stay in a cocoon for more than two hours until results were officially announced.

At prizegiving they went up on stage and……..

They had a beautiful gold medal!!

Postscript: Thanks epic and fabulous team xx

Masters Men 40+
Report by Mark Scott

After medalling the last four years our 7th this year didn’t feel too good, but shows where we’re at with a lot of us late 40’s now. A big thanks to Nick as our hot spare and Hadley coming into the team a fortnight before race day. We were a massive 15 minutes off 1st, 11 minutes of 3rd The top three teams were well ahead of the next five teams that we were competitive with, 4th team finished 3:51 ahead.

Saying that we had a great day and refocused on beating Lake City (fail) and the leading Senior Womans team, North Harbour Bay (win). Our team, in order of legs – Glenn Sexton, Kent Hodgson, Hadley Craig, Marc Scott, John Bowe, Mike Harris and Mike Causer.

Glenn got us off to a good start in contact in 6th and ahead of Bays. We stayed in the 5th to 8th place throughout the relay. A couple of our blokes got “chicked” by our Senior Ladies runners, I could have been one of those. Thanks Cecilia.

So what really mattered… a leg to go, a minute down on Bays. Mike Causer says “no problem”, “walk in the park”. Mike comfortably reels in the Bays runner and we smashed them by 5 seconds! Nice.

Recruitment started on Tuesday with Jason signed up. Need a few more to stop John Bowe and Mike Causer heading off to Tibet for a self-imposed 5 year exile and zen life!

Hawks Relay Team Results

The full official timing results can be viewed here

Dist Time M/Km
Junior Women 1st 
Leg1 Aimee Ferguson Fastest lap 8.3 0:32:19 3:54
Leg2 Grace Ritchie Fastest lap 8.2 0:31:58 3:54
Leg3 Jemima Antoniazzi 4.1 0:13:59 3:25
Leg4 Samantha Corbett Fastest lap 6.0 0:23:53 3:59
Leg5 Emerson Deverell Fastest lap 8.4 0:33:02 3:56
Leg6 Charli Miller 10.3 0:41:35 4:02
Finish 45.3 2:56:46 3:54
Masters Women 1st
Leg1 Kirsten Milne 8.5 0:35:54 4:13
Leg2 Helen Hall-King 8.8 0:39:24 4:29
Leg3 Karyn McCready 8.3 0:41:03 4:57
Leg4 Marion Millward Fastest lap 8.2 0:37:01 4:31
Leg5 Katy Dawson 10.1 0:40:27 4:00
Leg6 Maureen Leonard Fastest lap 8.4 0:38:04 4:32
Leg7 Bridget Ray 10.3 0:43:51 4:15
Finish 62.6 4:35:44 4:24
Senior Women 1 2nd
Leg1 Kovo MacDonald 8.5 0:35:11 4:08
Leg2 Malesa McNearney 8.8 0:34:03 3:52
Leg3 Dawn Tuffery 8.3 0:38:03 4:35
Leg4 Cecilia Flori 8.2 0:31:32 3:51
Leg5 Nancy Jiang Fastest lap 10.1 0:35:12 3:29
Leg6 Veronika Adams 8.4 0:35:52 4:16
Leg7 Olivia Ritchie 10.3 0:39:25 3:50
Finish 62.6 4:09:18 3:59
Masters 50+ 3rd
Leg1 John Crane Fastest lap 8.5 0:32:08 3:47
Leg2 Chris Keith 8.8 0:34:24 3:55
Leg3 Oscar Emery 8.3 0:38:11 4:36
Leg4 Kevin Knowles 8.2 0:33:38 4:06
Leg5 Chris Smith 10.1 0:36:34 3:37
Leg6 Garry Wilson 8.4 0:34:58 4:10
Leg7 Tony Olsen 10.3 0:38:03 3:42
Finish 62.6 4:07:56 3:58
Senior Men – B Grade 5th
Leg1 Jack Montgomerie 8.5 0:33:57 4:00
Leg2 Martin Ferry 8.8 0:32:19 3:40
Leg3 Sunil Ritchie 8.3 0:34:12 4:07
Leg4 Kris Moore 8.2 0:32:44 4:00
Leg5 Rueben Tomlinson 10.1 0:35:28 3:31
Leg6 Cameron Hall 8.4 0:31:41 3:46
Leg7 Carl Fischer 10.3 0:37:31 3:39
Finish 62.6 3:57:52 3:48
Masters Men 7th
Leg1 Glenn Sexton 8.5 0:32:08 3:47
Leg2 Kent Hodgson 8.8 0:32:27 3:41
Leg3 Hadley Craig 8.3 0:33:57 4:05
Leg4 Marc Scott 8.2 0:32:53 4:01
Leg5 John Bowe 10.1 0:35:30 3:31
Leg6 Mike Harris 8.4 0:33:02 3:56
Leg7 Mike Causer 10.3 0:36:49 3:34
Finish 62.6 3:56:46 3:47
Senior Men – A Grade 7th
Leg1 Malcolm King 8.5 0:31:56 3:45
Leg2 Jai Davis-Campbell 8.8 0:28:52 3:17
Leg3 Lance Brew 8.3 0:31:01 3:44
Leg4 Theunis Pieters 8.2 0:30:49 3:45
Leg5 Russ Best 10.1 0:31:30 3:07
Leg6 Rodrigo Jaca 8.4 0:29:56 3:34
Leg7 Jacob Priddey 10.3 0:34:34 3:21
Finish 62.6 3:38:38 3:30
Senior Women 1 2nd
Leg1 Kovo MacDonald 8.5 0:35:11 0:04:08
Leg2 Malesa McNearney 8.8 0:34:03 0:03:52
Leg3 Dawn Tuffery 8.3 0:38:03 0:04:35
Leg4 Cecilia Flori 8.2 0:31:32 0:03:51
Leg5 Nancy Jiang 10.1 0:35:12 0:03:29
Leg6 Veronika Adams 8.4 0:35:52 0:04:16
Leg7 Olivia Ritchie 10.3 0:39:25 0:03:50
Finish 62.6 4:09:18 0:03:59
Composite 7th
Leg1  Hikaru Mita 8.3 0:32:02 0:03:52
Leg2 Trish Stockman 8.2 0:47:50 0:05:50
Leg3 Brooke Shepherd-Wright 4.1 0:17:37 0:04:18
Leg4 Charlie Evans 6.0 0:27:20 0:04:33
Leg5 Marcus Daws 8.4 0:35:57 0:04:17
Leg6 Nick Freke 10.3 0:43:56 0:04:16
Finish 45.3 3:24:42 0:04:31
Junior Men 7th
Leg1 Lochie Montgomerie 8.3 0:30:46 0:03:42
Leg2 Connor Tristram 8.2 0:27:52 0:03:24
Leg3 William Swales 4.1 0:13:10 0:03:13
Leg4 Ben Prince 6.0 0:20:50 0:03:28
Leg5 Sam Montgomerie 8.4 0:31:53 0:03:48
Leg6 Isaiah Priddey 10.3 0:36:59 0:03:35
Finish 45.3 2:41:30 0:03:34

National Road Relays 2016 Results

The National Road Relays – such a special event! The finale for the winter road and cross country season, always full of drama (especially in the week before the race), where everyone is expected to give 100% and ends up giving 110%, awesome individual performances, team commitment … and most importantly, great fun. This year’s relay in Rotorua didn’t disappoint. It was all of these things … and to cap it off the Hawks finished with a 3 way share of top overall club alongside Wellington Harrier Athletic and Auckland City Athletic (the first time the honour has ever been shared) – a fantastic club result that reflects our depth across all age groups.


All teams performed magnificently on the day, but none more so than the Junior Women. This is a young junior team with most experiencing their first NRR and probably feeling a bit overwhelmed by it all. With some excellent guidance from Wendy and Helen as team managers they put in an exceptional performance to finish second and very nearly snatching the win. With several more years ahead of them, this team are already a force to be reckoned with at a national level.

There were many other great results and performances – too many to single out, but this is how the teams ended up …
Junior Women – 2nd
Senior Women – 2nd
Masters Women – 2nd
Junior Men – 6th
Senior Men – 3rd (B Grade)
Masters Men – 3rd
Masters 50 – 5th
Social Team – 5th

2016 NRR_Full Hawks_Results (PDF)
Full NRR results here

A huge thanks from me to everyone who took part, all those who helped organise, drive vans, support, etc. Thanks also to those people who marshalled a stage on behalf of the club – definitely the best organised change-over and great to see everyone out on the course.

We must also pass on a big thanks and congratulations to Lake City for hosting a very successful event.

Looking forward to next year already!

John Crane

And from Don – ‘Huge congratulations to all those involved in the national road relay champs over the weekend. To score 50 points in the champion club comp was a brilliant team effort. The fact that four clubs ended up with 50 was historic. Did Athletics NZ have spare gold medals available?

Superb effort to John Crane and his organising team. I was very proud to be a Hawk and was quite chuffed to be able to access Facebook and Twitter on my computer after noon and catch up with information about the many Hawks medal successes. There was some close racing for our teams and I look forward to hearing the many stories.  National road relays are FUN!’ – Don Willoughby

NRR report – Junior Womens Team

Report by Wendy Harris

Helen and I were privileged to be able to manage the Junior Women’s team of Sam Corbett, Aimee Ferguson, Monique MacDonald, Rose Dillon, Charli Miller and Grace Ritchie at this year’s NRR champs.  As a very young and inexperienced team we had no expectations of them placing and just hoped that they would enjoy the experience and see it as an opportunity to be a part of a national event and set themselves a goal for 2017.  The drive around the course on Friday followed by a team chat where Helen gave them instructions on not jumping into bushes and letting us know if they needed to go to the toilet while we were out on the course so we didn’t lose anyone only seemed to assist in increasing the nerves of the girls.


Race day dawned and we all jumped into “Betty” our trusty transport for the day with Sam who was up first looking rather nervous and quite possibly wondering what she had got herself into particularly as her longest ‘race’ previously was 5km and her lap was over 8km ending on a 2km hill.  Running a very well thought out and wisely paced lap Sam got the team into a creditable 5th place with the 4th placed runner within her sights as she handed the baton to Aimee.  Aimee was well aware that she had the biggest uphill lap and really needed to pace herself so she could do the distance.  She set off strongly and very quickly passed Pakuranga JW to gain a place and put us into 4th position.  Despite the tough uphill every time we saw her she was smiling and you could see the determination on her face – a really gutsy effort finishing strongly and resulting in being the second fastest JW on her lap.

Monique was next and with the shortest but nastiest lap, being a very steep downhill.  Monique maintained a fast even pace throughout and kept us close enough to the 3rd placed Wellington that there was a chance we could catch them.  Monique ran so hard her hips almost didn’t want to work anymore when she had done.  The very cheerful and bubbly Rose took over the baton at this point for leg 4 of the race and worked hard to close the gap between the Hawks and Wellington.  Her lap was a tough 6km of ups and downs but her triathlon training certainly paid off with Rose also ending up the second fastest JW runner for her lap.

With two laps to go and five minutes between the lead JW team of Auckland and our girls Charli took over.  She had been given strict instructions to ease off in the first 2kms as it is all uphill before it flattens out for the remaining 6km of her lap.  She seemed to have her own race plan though and took off flying up the hill.  Helen and I started to get a little concerned that she wouldn’t finish the lap as she couldn’t keep that pace up but she had obviously found a whole new level of speed and energy as she just kept going and going.  At this point the volume in ‘Betty’ increased somewhat as the girls realised that maybe, just maybe they might get a podium finish after all and there was much screaming out the windows as we cheered Charli on.  She passed the 3rd place, then she passed the 2nd place and by the time she had handed over the baton to Grace at the final changeover the girls were in 2nd place with only a minute and a half between them and Auckland.  Grace, the team’s most experienced runner in the team looked focused and calm as she set off (I’m sure she was actually quite anxious as the thought of keeping the team in 2nd place weighed on her mind).  We had to leave Grace at the 4km point of her 10.4km lap so we could get to the finish in time to see her but when we left her she was looking strong, determined and fast and we could see the gap between her and 3rd increasing as she made the prospect of a 2nd placing look very secure.

We saw Grace again as she came flying towards the finish having closed the gap between her and Auckland to around 30 seconds.  The girls (and Helen and I) were screaming in excitement knowing they were now silver medallists.  Charli and Grace also achieved the accolade of fastest runners on their prospective laps.  For Helen and I to say we are proud is an understatement.  The girls truly displayed guts, comradeship, support, encouragement, determination and I think most of all courage in what was an extremely tough race.  Well done girls.

A blast from the past



National Road Relays 2015 Results

NRR report – Senior Women

Written by Shanel, Hannah, Veronika and Kovo

Kovo got instructions to sort a SW team. Easy! Not really. But we got a team and even had a driver volunteer to drive us – he had no idea what he was getting himself into (thanks John).

The overall day was superb. 8 girls. One John. One van. Lots of food. And a team full of 50+ “old men” to chase. Sarah ran a superb first leg which was not an easy one with a winding uphill section followed by a undulating track. Thanks to strong uphill and speedy downhill running she managed to finish her leg as second senior woman (third fastest SW time overall). Nancy was second with a tough leg – but with an untied shoe lace the whole time.

She still managed she cruise to the finish to hand the baton onto Maddy Brunton, who ran an exceptional leg. This was a 10km flat leg starting at Gebbies Valley and finishing at the Ataahua Domain. Maddy ran strongly and was able to have runners in her sights to be able to stick with and to pass. A delight to hang out with for the day too.

Although a slightly shorter leg, Hannah’s leg was by no means easy! But she stepped up to the challenge and ran so well that she was voted by the team later as Most Valuable Player. And she really was! Having never raced this far before, she made it look easy, and she looked so strong the entire run! Running into a head wind, she pushed on surprising everyone with how fast she arrived at the finish! So much so that Veronika never did make that last minute toilet stop.

Veronika, although a known sprinter, was given the longest leg and absolutely nailed it. She was told to treat it like a rep training session- only this time she had 55x 200 reps with no breaks. She took it in her stride making 10.7k look easy, handing over for the hill leg to Malesa. She may be petite but boy this kid can eat – every time you looked at her she had a mouthful of sugar. Although nervous she was prepared – she was on a sugar high to bust up the hill in 38 mins (faster than the “old man she was chasing”).

Next up was Kovo. She’d seen the previous senior women’s team come in and was timing the gap, so that she knew how much time she had to make up to pass them. (We may not have been gunning for a medal, but any goal’s a good goal, right Kovo!) Malesa came into transition and Kovo was off! She had 6 mins 15 seconds to make up – if anyone can do it Kovo can. The surprise on many peoples faces as this tattooed, female, flying machine came bounding up behind them and passed them in the blink of any eye would have been priceless. She must have flown down that hill because she made up the 6.15 and more. What an amazing run! She was the fastest senior women of the day on that leg, and just 20th overall.

The cool calm collective experienced head brought us to our last runner of the day – Shanel. All day Shanel had supported and witnessed seven runners hit highs and lows before being handed the baton to take us to the finish. It was a very consistent steady run. Shanel took the massive hill and destroyed it, taking us over the line in a total time of 5hrs 31 and something seconds – and still smiling!

A massive high fives to the girls who put their hands up to make this possible and represent the Hawks for the last year (for a while) in ChCh. A bigger high five to John T for all his advice, support, effort, energy and wise calm words throughout the day. You had it harder than us girls! And now you know what we mean when we say we Need! To! Eat. All. The. Time!


NRR report – open C team

Report by Wendy Harris

I was privileged to be able to attend this year’s NRR as assistant Team Manager and driver for the Open C team, and it did not disappoint.  The trip down to Christchurch was relatively uneventful, only a quick turnaround for a certain President’s forgotten wallet, a dodgy-stomached MM and a rather bumpy plane ride to dampen the spirits of this year’s Hawks NRR teams who were ready and raring to go.

Along with John Tylden, I attended the Manager’s meeting on Friday night to make a whole raft of changes to our ever evolving teams – would John B’s stomach recover? Which team would win the fight over Dion, who was the least injured in the MW team, and get the hardest lap? After receiving extremely extensive and mind-numbing traffic management instructions and warnings, John T and I headed back to the Hawks team briefing to give them all their packs, pass on the warnings and wish everyone all the best for the next day.

Saturday dawned bright and clear and the Open C team decided to head off early to see the other Hawks teams start, as we were one of the later start times.  It was great to see the blue and yellow singlets standing out amongst the other clubs and to cheer our fellow members as they started off on the first of many steep hills to be faced by different runners throughout the day.

At 9.45am Ellie stood at the start of lap one ready to start the Open C team off.  She did us proud with a strong effort up a 4km long hill and then powered down the other side to pass the baton to Mike who despite some pre-race butt niggles ran an awesome second lap to bridge the gap between us and the team from Sumner and the Canterbury Tri Club.  Gary Clare (a newbie to NRR) did us proud as he stayed within striking distance on one of the long flat hot and windy laps of the day. Clare M (NRR newbie) ran an amazing lap, swallowed a few flying insects along the way, and was two minutes faster than her predicted lap time.  Little did we know at this point that we were about to start an epic battle of who would be the last team home (not the slowest team of the day as everyone had different start times) and the honour of being stalked by the traffic management team as they packed up behind us.

The baton was passed to Orlaith (NRR newbie) who powered away to close a six minute gap between us and the next team and put us into a good position of a minute ahead for Ross Barnett who was to take on the mother of all hills.  Ross (NRR newbie) had been on the reserve list stating that if we were really desperate and had no other options then he would join the team.  Well, Tuesday night the week of leaving things got desperate and Ross came to the party – little did he know that the hill lap was so evil.  As we kept on driving up that hill, Ross kept on running and running and running, never giving up and handed the baton to Michael H who was amped and ready to battle it out with the Canterbury Tri Club on the big downhill lap.

At the last transition point Sumner headed off with Canterbury Tri Club 9 minutes behind them and Hawks another 2 minutes behind. All was to change though on the last lap with Grant B running for his life behind a very fit and young tri club member.  Little by little they closed the gap on Sumner and with 3 km to go Grant closed the 11 minute gap and passed the Sumner runner.

After checking the results, we found our overall time was only 30 seconds behind the Hawks MW team and we had several of our team who had run faster times than anticipated.  It was an awesome day of great team work, camaraderie, gutsing it out when there was no more to give, and great support.  Thanks Open C team for making my first NRR experience such an awesome one.  I can’t wait till next year – hopefully I might even be able to run!

National Road Relays 2014 Results

Hawks finished the 2014 season with another successful and enjoyable National Road Relay Championship down in Christchurch at the weekend on the best and most challenging road relay course in New Zealand … Takahe to Akaroa.

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National Road Relays 2013 Results

What a great weekend away – great racing, loads of laughs, and simply the highlight of the harrier season. This event keeps people like me in the sport! Of course many thanks to everyone for attending, the club committee for putting this together for us, and to John Crane for leading the organisation and taking such good care of everything.
Corey Hinde

NRR2013_Hawks Team_Takehe Results 2013

NRR2013_Full Results_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 1_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 2_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 3_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 4_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 5_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 6_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 7_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 8_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 3 Juniors_10K_Takehe Results

NRR2013_Lap 4 Juniors_Takehe Results

Captain reports below the photos.  More photos to be added over the week or so.

[AFG_gallery id=’22’]

Composite Team
Another great year for the Composite Team finishing second in their grade.

The team as follows – in running order:-

Chris (what do they mean a small hill) Powell
Michael (they feared the beard) Hoogeveen
Matt (take that) Scott
Katie (see ya later matie) Stone
Colin (the Aussie battler) King
Arthur (girlie lap) Green (Composite Team CEO)

A great effort by the team to finish second with three over 50 runners behind the first placed team containing none!! Hard hill running by Chris and Mike to cover the first two legs followed by the two younger greyhounds making quick work of the next two flat laps earning themselves an even share of most valuable team member. The penultimate lap was a typically stoic effort by Colin with limited recent running under his belt with the race finished off by a broken arsed Team Captain on what can only be described as the most girly relay leg you will ever see!! Thank you to my team mates for giving 100% even though medals were not up for grabs. Great to see the Composite Team flying the flag for the Hawks yet again and once more I thank the club for including them as it is a great way for Club members to experience the National Road Relays without the associated pressure that can often accompany inclusion in a team in contention for medals and Top Club points.

Once again to all involved (both participation and/or organisation wise) congratulations and thank you.

Arthur, Composite Team Captain and CEO.

Seriously…the pressure I’ve been under!!!

Masters Men Team
The Masters Men’s race was always going to shape up into a repeat of the close contest over the last 4 or 5 years between Wellington Scottish, Papanui Toc H, Athletics Nelson and Hawks … and so it turned out!

With an excellent run from Andrew, we’d hit the lead on the first leg, Glenn also putting in a stunner to build a 30 second advantage over Nelson at the end of leg two, with Papanui not far behind. Scottish had started to just drift off the pace – it was already starting to look like a three-way battle for the medals.

Solid runs from Hadley and John held the lead, but Nelson and Papanui brought out some big guns for the long leg five. Jason toughed it out and kept them close – enabling our own “gun” (Kent) to re-establish the lead with a fastest MM lap up the hill. Over to Marc who put in an awesome downhill to hand over to Tony for the final lap … just 16 seconds behind Phil Costley from Nelson and with 1 min 40 seconds lead over Richard Bennett (Papanui) – the current Masters National Cross Country and Road Champion! Who would want to be in that position, sandwiched between the two best masters runners in the country?

Costley was never going to be threatened, bringing Nelson home for the win – but the race was on for silver and Tony delivered a truly outstanding performance to hold off Richard Bennett by 15 seconds.

So, silver for the Hawks Masters Men, and whilst the gold continues to remain just outside our grasp, we all share the view that this was a fantastic team performance, nothing short of 100% from every runner and a result that we’re very proud of.

Bring on next year and another crack at that elusive gold!


Senior Men Team
Really happy with how SM performed. 4 guys attending their 1st NRR, another 1st time in SM. More than half the van on debut. Corey doing his last NRR as a SM and Garit heading to Ramblers this would certainly be a development/transitional year.

Leg 1 was the Suter-vs-the-world classic. 20s slower than 4 years ago, yet faster than anticipated. Very very sore.

Garit given the job of leg 2. Having only noticed the hill in the elevation profile the day before he was anxious about how it would turn out. Very much in the thick of it with-A grade runners Garit had a great run. 12th fastest time of the day on a leg stacked with some of the best runners.

3rd out of the van, the Road Relay veteran Corsta with a point to prove. Still hunting for his elusive sub 35 10km for 2013, he battled all the way with a Pap-Toc runner before finally burying him in the last meters of the leg. 34 minutes and change. Guts!

Marcus next up with a long hard time-trial, showed good form off the back of a PB at club champs. Delivered to us another corpse for the van spending it all to exceed handicappers expectations.

Leg 5 saw Miguel out in clean air with little for company outside of the stunning scenery in what was fast becoming a beautiful Akaroa afternoon. The conquistador holding his composure and showing his class to finish hard at the base of Mt ridiculous.

Ant Hancy had the unenviable task of the ascending the monster hill and performed admirably. Internalizing his struggle as he chipped away at the climb. Desperation only apparent in the final moments as he offloaded the baton to Kris. The moment followed by some quiet time on the roadside overlooking Akaroa harbor. Antz with that 100 yard stare of a man that has seen too much.

Leg 7 is a lonely one and without a van of cheerleaders your runner is left out there to do their job unsupervised. Waiting at the bottom with a few beers and a big spatula to pick up the pieces we could only hope Kris would do what was expected of him. 9th SM, 14th fastest of the day. Better than any dared to dream, ‘run-of-the-day’ a deserved accolade for his accomplishment.

Ryan, our last trump card to play given the opportunity of glory and a certain battle with the omnipresent Lakes City. The perennial slug-fest once again playing out in their favor with Ryan far out of his depth against a fit Matt Parsonage (ring-in!). A classy finish by Ryan also clear of handicappers estimated time. A bright future ahead for a guy going from strength to strength. We’ll be watching Auckland Marathon with interest.

4th place in a grade we didn’t even qualify for. It was great to see fledgling relay runners exceed expectations and making no mistakes. A team I was proud to be part of and a relay I will always remember.


Senior Women Team
The Senior Women’s team of 2013 seemed like it was falling apart a few months ago but thankfully we all pulled together and made a pretty serious attempt at a repeat gold medal. North Harbour Bays and Canterbury were given the top spots in the earlier rankings and so we knew we’d all have to race hard to try for the title. Dawn started off with her always gutsy, consistently strong performance to give us a great start and handed the baton to Sarah. Unfortunately for Sarah her hamstring decided it had had enough and in a credit to sarah struggled on in what was probably the grossest relay leg ever. Thankfully she hung in there and was able to hand the baton over to our debut road relay runner Emily. Emily was neck and neck with the Wellington harriers runner and pulled out a huge run to smash 1minute off her 10k PB to continue us on in 5th place. the moto “you haven’t raced hard enough until you spew” was reverberating through the van but Emily held it together and bounced back pretty quickly. Katherine was up next and her first road run in months was always going to be tough. As usual she ran brilliantly and sped along the tarseal at pace before handing the slippery baton to Mikayla. If Mikayla was hungry before her leg then she needent have worried as there was enough bugs and midgey’s along the way to keep her full until xmas. The sun decided to appear as well and the combination made it a seriously tough day but she powered on for a solid run. The hill leg was up next and it was certainly a challenge. I’ve done a few hills recently but that one was fairly ugly and it was a lovely sight to hand the baton on still in 4th place to Kovo. Kovo is a legend, she absolutely ripped the downhill apart and taught everyone around her how to do it… awesome effort, fastest leg by several minutes and put us into a medal winning position. Speedy Camille was up next and it was going to take something super human to improve our position but she tried anyway. It was a tough leg but she made it look easy and every shot on dawn’s camera had her perfect stride captured. Camille ran us through the shoot in 3rd place so we were all absolutely rapt. A fun as day with loads of laughter, challenges and good memories. Next time we’ll get the title back. Thanks to Graham for the superb driving and support. One last thing to mention was to explain how John Bowe managed to beat me up the beasty hill on lap 6. A mishap at the airport resulted in our bags being switched. My lucky pink (surprise surprise) undies were manhandled by John as he tried to explain away the heavier bag and therefore rendering my lucky pink undies no longer lucky. They were tarnished. Hehe, thankfully i was alerted to the mistake before i went through his tighty whities!!!!!!!

Helen Rountree

Junior Man team

Lap 1 – Conor 5th fastest time
Lap 2 – Harry 5th
Lap 3 – Jacob 2nd (4th overall seniors etc)
Lap 4 – Thuenis 4th (8th overall)
Lap 5 – Oliver 11th
Lap 6 – Cameron 6th

We were in 5th place for the entire race, with Jacob taking 40 – 60 sec out of most of the top teams on his lap (except ACA), and Theunis holding ground against other top runners from around the country.

We were hoping to be amongst the medals, and thought that we did have a chance, but this was a very tough race with some good competition amongst the top 5 teams. All teams had the top juniors from around the country who had competed recently in the Australian XC champs.


Masters Women Team
I am so very proud of the clubs Masters woman’s team who ran with guts and determination to grab the silver medal. Our team had been severely depleted with injuries and withdrawals in the 10 days leading up to departure day but we had wonderful women who were able to fill the gap and bring us to the finish line. Kirsten got us off to a flying start not only getting to the top first (and making Scottish exclaim ” where the f…. Is our runner”) but also to the bottom. She handed over to Maureen, who as she is running the Melbourne marathon next weekend agreed to run to make sure we had a team, ran strongly up and over Geddes Pass. I was the next runner on my speciality flat leg and made it to the end very happy with my run. Ever reliable Karen took over and ran a blinder to bring us back within a minute of Scottish. Trish ran amongst the sand flies in the heat beside the lake to hold our position of second and hand over to our first relay virgin, Jenni. Up that hill she went without missing a beat and had the Masters Men commenting on her “focus”. Jenni may have another name for it. And then our second relay virgin Ellie took us down the hill. Thank you Ellie for stepping in only five days before the day to run like she had never run before! Our British import, Vicki, ran up and down, and up and down to come flying into the finish and was heard to comment “I would like to do that again next time” or words to the effect.

Thank you girls for a wonderful day and a fantastic result. You rock! Helen Hall-King

Master Men 2
A competitive 50/50 mix of MM40 + MM50

Kicked off by a great show of Grant Budd enthusiasm, keeping our MM1 team in sight.

Next up Norm kept the pressure on, making short work of the hills in leg 2 before passing on to Oscar (our team comedian), Garry (run till you drop) Wilson and marathon trained Mike Harris who all fought off the mozzies along the shores of lakes Ellesmere and Forsyth, before handing over to John Bowe, who had recently eaten $100 worth of groceries to supply the energy required to run well up the monster hill.

Next I, Kevin, ran along the tops to the longest down-hill ever, chasing but not catching the flying Kovo.

‘Chicked’ again. More training for me.  “Why do my legs hurt so bad”.

I passed the baton to Dion to run leg 8 with Lake City hot on his heels. Dion held off this challenger for nearly 10km until Akaroa, where they slipped by. Close finish. Another Speights Carb shot may have done the trick. Great Team and great times.


Tag Archive for: NRR

National Road Relays

The National Road Relays is over the Takahe to Akaroa course in Christchurch again this year. The race starts at the Sign of the Takahe and follows the traditional route through Governors Bay, Gebbies Valley, Little River and Duvauchelle to Akaroa. The Junior Relay, Open Masters over 60 and Corporate/Social grade will start at Allandale (start of lap 2 Senior Race) and finish at
Cooptown (End of lap 5 Senior Race)

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