The first Warwick parkrun on Saturday was the 40th centre in Australia to join the popular movement.
The first Warwick parkrun on Saturday was the 40th centre in Australia to join the popular movement. Trevor Ross

Parkrun nearly 100 first-up

RUNNING: Linda Coombes and her fellow parkrun volunteers hope to crack the magic 100 participants in the first month of the event in Warwick.

"I would have been happy with 20 for our first day on Saturday, but was over the moon when 98 participants started," Coombes said.

The event, which started at Bushy in the United Kingdom in 2004, has always been a 5km run.

The first in Australia was at Main Beach on the Gold Coast in April, 2011.

"Warwick is the 40th centre in Australia and 21st in Queensland to hold a parkrun," event director Coombes said.

On Saturday, Matt Raschke and daughter Rebecca travelled from Newcastle to support the first parkrun in Warwick.

Tim Oberg, general manager of parkrun Australia, was at the launch along with Southbank parkrun members Brent Stower and Fran Purcell.

Rain, hail or shine, the Warwick parkrun is from 7am each Saturday starting at Tiddalik in Federation Park, just upstream from Madsen Bridge. All are asked to be at the starting point at 6.45am.

Coombes said all runners competed against themselves.

"Each participant registers at parkrun.com and prints out a barcode which they take each Saturday to be automatically emailed with their event time," she said.

"Some are just going in it for the motivation of exercising and aren't worried about times.

"The 5km distance was set for those just starting out with exercise, but is also for people who are wanting to improve their 5km time."

The event is run by volunteers all around the world.

Coombes estimated half of the participants ran the course on Saturday, others jogged and walked and some walked with their dogs.

The first male across the line was Jacob Davis in 18 minutes, 53 seconds, and the first female Jacqueline Henricks in19:44.

Warwick West State School student Sophie Follett finished in 20:53 on top of an outstanding season in cross country.

There were some members of the Pentath-run committee involved on Saturday who did a lot more running and walking at the weekend at Relay for Life which attracted 28 teams to Risdon Oval from 3pm Saturday to 9am Sunday.

All welcome to parkrun, regardless of ability or age, but each participant must register online and bring their bar code each Saturday.



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