13-19 February 2020 | Edition 961

Page 16

Sun Sport

thewanakasun.co.nz

Swimmer embarks on an ambitious journey Ollie Blyth

journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz

Wānaka Parkrun celebrated its 100th run last week. From left, Jane and Adam Sharman.

PHOTO: Facebook

Parkrun passes centennial mark Francesca Maria Nespolo

journalist@thewanakasun.co.nz

The parkrun concept started in England 16 years ago when a group of friends started doing a 5km timed run on Saturdays. It slowly grew and then rapidly expanded so it is now a global phenomenon – nowadays there are thousands of parkruns worldwide in 22 different countries. So far, there are 29 locations in New Zealand, one being Wānaka, where it has now taken place for two years, combining for over 100 events. “The 100th parkrun in Wānaka is a huge milestone for us!,” said Jane Sharman, the wife in the husband-and-wife duo who kicked off this low-key but iconic event. “Adam and I have been there for most of the 100 events and have been supported by amazing local volunteers, the QLDC and Edgewater (where we go afterwards

s t n o ac

for coffee!). We have met so many awesome people – including locals, people with holiday homes in the area and lots of parkrun tourists each week – who plan their trips to coincide with parkrun. We have made good friends and love the positive energy the event brings to kick off people's weekends. We have seen many gain confidence as they become fitter and many who have used the runs to train for personal goals,” said Sharman. The run is open to everyone: “Once you register you have your personal barcode and you can use it at any parkrun worldwide and your time will be recorded against your name. Parkrun is always free to participate in and it's for everyone (all ages, all abilities; walk or run)”. On February 22 Wānaka parkrun will celebrate its second birthday. “We look forward to many more years!” concluded Sharman.

Rob Hutchings, a 44-year-old Wānaka resident, has recently announced that he intends to swim the full 338kms of the Clutha River in five to six days next week, and will be completing the swim out of pure passion for the activity. The swim is scheduled to start from around 7:30am on Thursday February 20, and Hutchings hopes to reach the ocean before his time off work is up. “I am doing this as a personal goal,” said Hutchings, “I have been sponsored two Blueseventy wetsuits for the swim, but I have no other gear or cash sponsors… I'm new to New Zealand, so I am still working my way around the country having various adventures of swimming, cycling and running, and when I heard that the Clutha River was certainly deep enough and had enough water flow for a river swim challenge, I booked a ski trip to Wānaka in August 2019 and also had a 'scouting mission' on the Clutha to see if the swim was feasible.” Even the obvious obstacles of the various dams on the river aren’t getting in Hutchings’ way, “We have pre arranged exit and entry points on either side of the dams. Each point is about one kilometer up river from the dam and about the same down river from the dams.” “Although I am the only one who is swimming, I'd love some community support,” added Hutchings, “I invite walkers, runners and cyclists to go along side the Clutha River trail, and I would really appreciate it if anyone would

PHOTO: Rob Hutchings

Rob Hutchings plans to swim the full length of the Clutha next week, hopefully in just five days.

volunteer to take video footage and photos from the trail… I'm not a film maker so I don't expect to create a cinematic masterpiece, but if anyone in the community is a film maker of some kind, I'd love an offer of volunteer help.” Find out more information on the swim’s details on Facebook.

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w r no i t t on e c c t se der r si n u 90ow u yo n re cu e S

It’s happening fast Earthworks now underway

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Priced from $339,000 Agents on site Saturday and Sunday 1.00 - 1.30 pm

REAL ESTATE

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P 03 443 0097 I E info@fnwanaka.com I W www.fnwanaka.com THURSDAY 13.02.20 - WEDNESDAY 19.02.20

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