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July 19, 2012
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It is there SGT Purdon will come
face-to-face with 23 other distance
runners who also have pacemakers.
The Minneapolis marathon on
October 7 is sponsored by pacemaker
manufacturer Medtronic, which invit-
ed pacemaker patients from around
the world to apply to race there under
its Global Heroes program.
More than 200 applied and SGT
Purdon was among the two dozen
Thirty-five Defence runners took
part in the Defence marathon, which
was part of a much bigger race that
attracted 5748 runners from around
the world, including elite runners
from Kenya, Ethiopia, Portugal and
The Gold Coast event was SGT
Purdon's final marathon hitout before
Minneapolis. Although that's going to
be a more testing course, he hopes he
can crack the three-hour mark.
He's already doing 80km a week
in training, and there are a few cross-
country races and a fun run coming
up. Some of his training mates include
people preparing for the Melbourne
marathon, which is scheduled for a
week after Minneapolis.
That means they'll be on the same
For the record, the hand-in-hand
finish on the Gold Coast was not pre-
In fact, Jodie got the jump early in
the race and SGT Purdon caught and
passed her at the 23km mark. At the
36km mark Jodie caught up with him
and they ran together for the rest of
But even then, nothing was decid-
ed. Not until just before the end.
"About 1½ km out, we decided to
finish together for a change," SGT
The race commentator trumpeted
their achievement as they crossed the
line.Jodie said: "Neither of us had the
races which we wanted, but were very
happy with how we both finished up.
"We both hit 'struggle city' at dif-
ferent stages and for various reasons,
but to finish a race together was awe-
some. In the six years we have raced
together, we have never crossed the
The ADF male champion was
LEUT Rowan Walker, who has won
the title five years in a row.
The Australian Defence Running and
Athletics Association was presented
with a trophy as thanks for sending
athletes to the Gold Coast event and
also making it a Defence championship
FLTLT Spencer Cox was a relieved man when he was
judged winner of the 35-39 years 100-metre race at
the Oceania Area Championships in Cairns from June
27 to 29.
When he crossed the line, he thought he had won.
But it was about half an hour before the official result
came through to him -- and it was only then he realised
just how close it had been.
Just 1/100th of a second separated him from Army
reservist LT Daniel Lemoto.
"That's about 5cm," FLTLT Cox said. "I hadn't real-
ised it was that close."
FLTLT Cox, who is also president of the Australian
Defence Running and Athletics Association, knows LT
LT Lemoto had at one stage applied to be part of the
official ADF team for the competition. But he left the per-
manent Army in April and made his own way to Cairns
from Hobart, where he now lives.
The two other ADF members in the team were LT
Adon Cadona and PTE Amanda Morris.
They had qualified for the competition, which
brought together more than 200 Australians competing
against athletes from 22 countries, including Fiji, Samoa,
Solomon Islands, the Cook Islands, New Zealand and
the Marshall Islands.
Among the competitors were the Australian men's
Olympic 4 x 100 team, the Japanese women's Olympic
4 x 100 relay team and the Japanese men's Olympic
4 x 400 relay team.
World record holder for the men's pole vault Sergei
Bubka was at the championships in his role as International
Amateur Athletics Federation senior vice-president.
Bubka, from Ukraine, won six International
Association of Athletics Federations world champion-
ships, an Olympic gold and broke the world record 35
times. The last time was 1994 and it still stands.
Conditions were cloudy with light rain for most of the
carnival, but it was cooler than it can be in Cairns, which
FLTLT Cox said made competing more comfortable.
LT Adon Cadona competed in the open men's 200
metres (sixth in western division final and eighth overall
in 23.11sec) and long jump (sixth in western division and
seventh overall in 5.82 metres).
PTE Morris contested the open women's 200m (sec-
ond in western division, fourth overall in 25.98sec and
the open women's 400m (fourth in western division and
fifth overall in 58.45sec).
FLTLT Cox was also scheduled to race in a 200-
metre final three hours after his 100-metre race but
injured his shin in his warm-up and had to pull out.
ADF trekkers are being sought to
participate in the Trek for Timor
Blue Mountains in September,
which aims to raise money for
the community of Hatobuilico in
The 2010 trek had 250 walk-
ers who raised $61,000 -- but this
year the goal is 350 walkers and
Trekkers in teams of four
to six members will step out on
September 15 to walk 5km, 13km,
25km or 45km through the Blue
Mountains National Park.
Last time two Navy teams
entered. This year organisers
have already welcomed a team
of six entrants representing Navy
-- Trident Adventure Group. But
they hope Air Force and Army
personnel will also sign up,
either as trekkers or logistics vol-
The leaders of Hatobuilico,
which is south-west of Dili on the
slopes of Mount Ramelau, want to
develop education, health and tour-
ism -- and the Trek for Timor Blue
Mountains will make a significant
contribution to schools, scholar-
ship programs and community
Registration is $30 a person
and each trekker is encouraged to
raise at least $150 in sponsorship.
For more information go to www.
trekfortimorbm.org.au or call Anne on
0404 474 907.
Blue Mountains trek beckons
for couple in
50 for City2Surf
THE Australian Defence Running and
Athletics Association (ADRAA) hopes
about 50 Defence runners will turn out
for the City2Surf race in Sydney on
Sunday, August 12. The City2Surf is one
of the world's largest fun runs and about
85,000 runners are expected to line up
in the 14km race this year. It starts in
the city centre and ends at Bondi Beach.
The ADRAA will hold its annual general
meeting on Friday, August 10 at BLG 96,
Victoria Barracks, Sydney, starting at 2pm.
Defence squash titles
DEFENCE Squash is holding its national
championships at RAAF Base Williamtown
from August 5 to 10. Entry forms are
on the Defence Squash's Facebook page
and the Defence Squash web page on
the Intranet, http://intranet.defence.
IN THE FAST LANE: FLTLT Spencer Cox powers down the track at the Oceania Area
Championship in Cairns.
Photo: Dominic Chaplin/Pine Creek Pictures
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