More than 160 participants are celebrating and recharging the batteries after completing Endeavour Foundation’s Team Endurance 500km Relay, which started in Beaudesert and ended in Fernvale.
Eight teams left Beaudesert’s Jubilee Park on Friday and then had to battle the heat as they ventured towards Rathdowney and Boonah. They began to pick up their pace at Lake Maroon when a member of each team had to do a challenging hill climb as part of the ‘Hero Leg’ of the journey.
“It was fantastic watching a member of each team do the hill climb at Maroon Dam and my teammate Chris Bracken won it, which was awesome,” Fitnance Relay Team Manager Michael Whiting said. “Running is usually done solo but being able to do the relay with your team and meet new people as well as raise money for people with a disability is wonderful.”
While teams had to endure the heat during the first stages of the event, by the second day they had to contend with torrential rain as they planned to make their way from Warwick through Killarney, on to Greenmount and end the day in Toowoomba.
“The Sunday morning proved to be the most challenging as we were going down the Toowoomba Range and travelling on fairly steep trail runs that go into Fernvale but it was all part of the experience and I loved it,” Bayside Runners 2 team member Deb Wilson said.
“Everyone has been really supportive by ensuring we had enough water, encouraging people and cheering us all on and we managed to pick up a few ‘strays’ along the way, when members from other teams got lost and joined ours for a bit until they caught up with their team again,” Deb said.
The teams crossed the finish line at around 2:30pm on Sunday afternoon and then enjoyed a barbeque and received trophies for their stellar efforts. The team ‘Fitnance’ was declared the overall winner and also won the Hero Leg Trophy and the Boonah Criterium Fastest Team Trophy. While Dan Symonds from Team Victory won the Down the Range Dash Male, Bayside Runners 1 took out the Team Spirit award and Team Apparently won the Fastest One Day Relay.
“We are so pleased with the outcome considering it was only a few weeks ago that we decided to get a team together and we had such great fun during the relay that we’re definitely coming back next year,” Michael said.
The relay has raised more than $37, 000 dollars. All funds raised by the 500km Team Endurance Relay will go to Endeavour Foundation’s Sport and Recreation Project for people with a disability to lead active, healthy lives by taking part in physical recreational activities and joining mainstream community-based sporting organisations.
Endeavour Foundation is an independent not-for-profit organisation supporting more than 3,300 people with a disability from more than 230 locations in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia, through accommodation support, employment, education, training, vocational and lifestyle opportunities.