Location: Westbury, northern Tas
Distances: 4 and 8km
What is it with the North of the State and having such awesome community-based, scenic and well-organised fun runs? Well, I cannot complain! Westbury is another “must do” event.
The event is generally held mid-September by the Westbury Rotary Club. Proceeds from the event go towards a nominated charitable cause – this changes each year. Regardless, you know your entry fee is going to a good cause. The course is extremely scenic and permits participants to take in much of the beautiful and historic surrounds of the town of Westbury. Both 8km and 4km options are available catering for people of all ages and abilities.
The run starts at the Westbury sportsgrounds and is an out and back course. It is predominately on bitumen with about 40% of the remainder on well-groomed trails. The run takes participants through the main streets of Westbury before heading into a scenic conservation area interwoven with well-marked trails. From there it is a run along the back roads of Westbury taking in some country scenery before looping around the turn-around cones – the support from volunteers is much appreciated at this point of the race – and heading back to the sports ground. Again, being an out and back course, there is plenty of high-five potential! The finish feels “Olympic-esque” with participants doing another loop of the oval and onlookers crowing the edges cheering all toward the finish. The organisers utilise the microphone to offer encouragement to all as they head along the last stretch.
Post-race there is a community BBQ and a presentation with trophies going to the winners of each event. There are also plenty of nice bakeries and cafes in which to sample the local produce on the return trip!
The course has about three hills to keep the heart rate up but is otherwise a fast course – I set my 8km PB here so it is good for PB-seekers. A very well organised event with an incredible community vibe. A great day out and only a short drive from Launceston.
Check out the Facebook page for updates regarding the 2015 event: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rotary-Club-of-Westbury/173483749371340
Event profile: David Bailey