Mother's Day Classic gets influx of runners

The 10km runners fire off the line at the start of the Merimbula Mother's Day Classic on Sunday morning.
The 10km runners fire off the line at the start of the Merimbula Mother's Day Classic on Sunday morning.

About 200 people hit the ground running to support breast cancer research on Sunday.

Merimbula's Mothers' Day Classic attracted a record turnout at Spencer Park with about 50 people taking on a 10km run, while a further 140 completed a 5km run or walk.

Classic organiser Shannon Thomson said she was blown away by the response to the day.

"The numbers are the best we've ever had and we couldn't be happier she said."

And it wasn't just the numbers on the scenic lakeside loop that impressed, but Ms Thomson estimated a further 50 people offering moral support from the sidelines at Spencer Park alone on the morning.

Prolific Merimbula runner Steph Auston headed up the 10km distance, finishing in just 36 minutes with Steve Isles the first man through the gates just one minute back.

Runners-up were James Lukassen and Jess O'Brien.

In the 5km run, Eden's Jack Caldwell celebrated his 13th birthday with line honours ahead of Bemboka distance runner Keith Law.

Rachel Paule won the women's event ahead of Nicky Daswon, while Georgia Caldwell claimed third just 20 seconds back.

Ms Thomson congratulated the winners and said the weekend was a huge turnaround from the unfortunate cancellation of the 2018 run due to bad weather, while she thought numbers were well above those of 2017.

"It's safe to say we've doubled the numbers," Ms Thomson said.

The organiser said the huge influx had been thanks to the Sapphire Coast Runners rolling in their support.

"They approached us about amalgamating and we leaped at the opportunity," Ms Thomson said.

"They're not going to hold the Merimbula Fun Run later this month, but are still looking to take part in the Bega Fun Run later in the year."

Mother's Day Classic events run Australia wide and have raised more than $35 million since its inception in 1998 and Ms Thompson said it was great to be a part of.

"Seven years ago my daughter [Carmen] and I did it on our own," she says with a laugh. "The Classic were very supportive, but we needed a bigger team and Rotary came on board about four years ago.

"Gai Byrne stood up and said 'we'll help' and they've been invaluable with marshalling and setting up - they're the backbone of it I'd have to say."

With the time-keeping expertise of the Sapphire Coast Runners on board, organisers had a bit of bounce in their step Monday morning.

"Normally Carmen, Gai and I are exhausted," Ms Thomson said with a laugh. "But it's huge having the extra help with all the logistics - it's a huge job."