On August 27th I ran the Kangaroo Island Half Marathon and my wife, Laurie, ran the Full Marathon in South Australia. Kangaroo Island is a big place (1700 square miles) and home to a lot of wildlife. Many of the athletes, including us, were bussed 90 minutes on race morning from the small town of Kingscote to Flinders Chase National Park where the race was held. There must have been hundreds of wallabies and kangaroos that ran in front of our bus on the way to the race. We even saw a koala hanging out in a tree by the start/finish line.
We both had great races. I was the overall winner of the Half Marathon with a time of 1:32:22. My race had a small field of only 57 finishers, but a win is a win. I think my last overall victory was in the late ‘90’s so I made certain to enjoy it. Especially nice were the Lululemon girls giving me all sorts of attention at the finish line. In my mind, though, the best girl out there was Laurie. She finished 3rd overall female in the Marathon in what she described as the toughest course she’s ever run. It was hilly and windy out there!
We met some really cool characters in this race. Possibly the biggest highlight was Laurie seeing her old New York friend Edson Sanches board the bus on race morning. Laurie had no idea Edson was doing the race so when she saw him she let out a good holler at 5am that woke every person and all the wildlife at Kangaroo Island. This race was Edson’s 99th country to run a marathon in and his 590th marathon of all time. Amazing!
I met a guy named Scott Kerrison who did the Half Marathon with me. Scott finished 3rd overall. After our race he was going to fly to Perth to run a 12K the following day in Australia’s largest annual running event – City to Surf. So between the 98 runners at Kangaroo Island and the 40,000 runners in Perth, Scott had both extremes pretty well covered.
And Eoin Loftus, the CEO of Majestic Hotels, also ran the KI Marathon. This was his 4th marathon in 4 days. Eoin ran these marathons to raise awareness for Aboriginal foster children in South Australia. Very impressive!
The following day we took a tour of Kangaroo Island. We enjoyed sea lions, koalas, the Remarkable Rocks and the stalactite covered Admirals Arch. We will have a lot of fond memories of Kangaroo Island.
Living the life…