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Issue 2 - March 1, 2010 enews home

Runners make tracks to the US

Runners prepare for the big race in Central Australia

Runners prepare for the big race in Central Australia

By Jason McIntosh

A fun run at Santa Teresa, a community east of Alice Springs, has helped reignite interest in long distance running within Central Australia’s Indigenous community.

Charles Darwin University sponsored the event in February and launched the marathon project for Indigenous athletes from Central Australia to compete for a place at the New York Marathon.

The launch of the “Run to America” marathon project was organised by former Olympian Robert de Castella and former Alice Springs marathon runner John Bell.

Six Indigenous Territorians will be selected to compete in the New York Marathon later this year.

The potentially US-bound runners include Charlie Lynch and Andrew Banjo Conway, from Santa Teresa, and Charlie Maher Junior and Caleb Hart, from Alice Springs.

The fun run aimed to promote healthy living and reignite a passion for long distance running in Indigenous people in Central Australia.

A short course around the community saw children and teenagers eager to compete with Federal and State politicians, and journalists covering the event.

CDU VET lecturer Nicole Traves has worked extensively with local families in the community for 23 years and said the event was highly significant on a number of levels.

“It was a fantastic intercultural and intergenerational activity, with many supporters including young families travelling from Alice Springs. There was a real fun element to the day.”