Dale Bickham, Andrew White, Paul Boxshall and Amanda Harper all put in good performances in wet conditions in the Victorian half marathon championships at Burnley On Sunday 3 September 2006. Long time club member, Dale Bickham, now living in Queensland, returned to Melbourne for the weekend and ran a brave race before fading slightly towards the end to finish 6th, while Andrew White and Paul Boxshall also finished in the top 25. In the women’s race Amanda Harper ran a PB to finish in 16th place.
In overcast and drizzling conditions at Burnley, Box Hill was represented by Dale Bickham, Andrew White, Paul Boxshall, Tim Heron, Graeme Olden, Bill Dyer and Scott Boxshall who raced in the men’s Half Marathon race and Jess De Bruin, Amanda Harper, and Kate Wall represented us in the women’s section.
Magnus Michelsson (Collingwood) started off with Rod de Highden (Doncaster) and these two gradually worked themselves into the lead, spread-eagling the field. It appeared that most of the participants in the top half of the field were using the race as a training run and there were people running in unexpected positions throughout the field. Early in the race, Dale Bickham contested third place with Linton Gloster (Glenhuntly). Leading athletes including Lee Troop, Marty Fedmowski, Nick Harrison, David McNeill and a number of others were running further back, instead of being at the front of the field.
The women’s race was a contest between Anna Thompson (Glenhuntly) and Karen Natoli (Knox) with Tracey Austin (Malvern) some distance behind. Thompson started to exert pressure mid-race and dropped Natoli and the race was over at that point.
The men’s race remained interesting until the last circuit of the course, with de Highden and Michelsson running stride for stride until Michelsson suffered an injury and slowly receded as a threat, being passed by a number of other athletes at the front end of the field. Dale Bickham conceded two places in the latter stages, and Julian Marsh (APS) ran though to take the silver medal behind de Highden, with Daniel Hornery (Sandringham) also moving forward to claim the bronze medal. Linton Gloster (GH) held on for fourth place.
Andrew White ran a finished in 14th place, recovering from the Australian Cross Country Championships the previous weekend. Paul Boxshall placed around 23rd position, and Tim Heron finished around 73rd position. Graeme Olden was 35 seconds behind him somewhere around 80th in the field and Bill Dyer and Scott Boxshall also completed the course.
Amanda Harper maintained her good winter form to place 16th, while Kate Wall finished 43rd in her first attempt at this distance.
Men’s Results 1 Rod de Highden Doncaster 1:08:50 2 Julian Marsh APS 1:09:30 3 Daniel Hornery Sand. 1:09:43 6 Dale Bickham Box Hill 1:10:45 14 Andrew White Box Hill 1:12:48 23 Paul Boxshall Box Hill 1:13:20 68 Tim Heron Box Hill 1:18:32 77 Graeme Olden Box Hill 1:19:07 129 Bill Dyer Box Hill 1:24:27 185 Scott Boxshall Box Hill 1:31:28 Teams Results 1. Glenhuntly 42 2. Geelong 53 3 APS 65 4. Box Hill 111 Women’s Results 1 Anna Thompson Glen 1:18:42 2 Karen Natoli Knox 1:20:41 3 Tracey Austin Malvern 1:21:04 15 Amanda Harper Box Hill 1:30:30 38 Kate Wall Box Hill 1:38:22