Completing one City2Surf is an achievement for many but for one group of runners this year’s event will be the 50th time they’ve taken on the famous 14km course.
The City2Surf Legends are preparing for the 50th physical running of the event on Sunday 14 August, with the event returning to the streets of Sydney for the first time since 2019.
Currently 24 runners have taken part in every City2Surf, stretching back to the inaugural race in 1971, with the majority set to line up again in 2022.
82-year-old Ted Thompson is looking forward to reuniting with his fellow Legends on the start line and being a part of the popular event once again.
“I’m excited and a little concerned as I’ve got a couple of old age injuries starting to creep in, but I say to everybody that when I get to the starting line I will make it and I will finish,” said Thompson. “I’m a bit of a traditionalist, I was in the Fire Brigade for 44 years, I’m a very proud Firefighter, when I started the City2Surf I was a part of a running club that I started and then the camaraderie from that club and my other sporting areas followed me into the City2Surf.
“After 10 times I thought I’m going to keep going at this and now I make sure I don’t go on holidays in August, I don’t go to weddings in August, one time there was a wedding on the Sunday so I ran the City2Surf and then went to the wedding,” he said. “I’m hoping to be back again next year, I’m only 82, there’s a few here older than me but I want to keep going until I’m the oldest City2Surfer.”
For Laurie Coleman the City2Surf introduced him to running events and he hasn’t looked back since that day in 1971, and he still regularly competes in races of all distances.
“When I first started running in the City2Surf it changed my life and I was hooked after the first one, I gradually built up from there for the longer distances but the City2Surf is still number one for me,” said Coleman. “I’m definitely looking forward to the 50th live running of the City2Surf. I did a half marathon recently and we had a club race on Sunday over 15km so I hope I’ll be ready on the day. If I can get up the Rose Bay hill, once you get to the top of that that’s the main thing and you get a new lease of life until the next hill.”
Fellow City2Surf Legend Phillip Worrall loves the community aspect of the City2Surf, with it bringing people together from all walks of life to achieve a common goal.
“The City2Surf is a great community event, it has great community spirit, everyone is happy, I’ve never seen anything negative arise from it and it’s a great annual gauge of fitness and something to aspire to each year,” said Worrall. “I’m looking forward to making it again and seeing how my fitness is progressing again over the years.”
This group has plenty of City2Surf experience on their side and Coleman and Worrall had some simple words of advice for those taking part in the world’s largest fun run for the first time on Sunday 14 August.
“Take it easy to start with, save yourself for the Rose Bay hill and the adrenaline will get you to the finish,” said Coleman.
“On the day you will get carried along by the momentum of the crowd and the spirit of the day,” said Worrall.
Entries for the City2Surf are available at https://city2surf.com.au/