SMC Road Race Series

We are a non-profit running club, run entirely by volunteers. Anyone can run at any SMC event, no matter what their ability, speed or experience. All runners are issued with timing chips and bibs, and all finishers get an official time from our electronic timing system.

You do not need to be a member to run at an SMC road race.  You can enter a single race online, or purchase multiple races in advance to save even more time and money.

Full details of the current season can be found on the Calendar page.

Next Event - Sunday, 22 April 2018

Race Eight

6:30 a.m. 30km and 21.1km early race start*
7:00 a.m. 21.1km regular race start
7:45 a.m. 10km and kids 2km dash race start
8:00 a.m. 5km race start

* For 21.1 km runners with a projected finish time > 2h15m


Registration is closed.


This is the first of a series of articles that we would like to bring to you, featuring the runners that make the SMC community such a great place to spend our time and our kilometers.

This article comes from new treasurer and SMC veteran runner Joe Buttigieg. In 2016, Joe competed in the World Masters Athletic Championships. The experience of competing on a global stage is one that many of us can only dream of, and now Joe would like to share that experience with all of us.

What is the World Masters about?

More than 4,000 competitors and some 3,000 supporters from around the globe came to Perth this year where for 12 days starting on 26/10 to 6/11 people aged from 35 to 97 competed in 25 events from the Javelin to the triple jump, the 100m sprint to the marathon and everything else in between. While the normal Olympic Games give the young people the opportunity to compete on the World stage, the Masters are a perfect opportunity for veteran athletes to shine in a league of their own.

Australia has played a host to the World Masters on two other occasions, in 1987 in Melbourne and 2001 in Brisbane. This year in Perth, Australia is represented by 1416 competitors: Great Britain & Northern Ireland 282, U.S.A. 244, Germany 186 and New Zealand 115, the rest are made up of other countries from Europe and Asia.

When I arrived in Perth on Monday morning 24/10, an Ace Car rental shuttle bus picked me up and after all the paperwork was done, I was on my way to Floreat in a Toyota Camry. With only approx. one million people, traffic congestion is never a problem, I had a smooth drive to Floreat which was 22k from the airport. I was impressed with the efficient transport system, getting to WA Athletic Stadium and Ern Clark Stadium was not a problem, shuttle buses and trains took you to the venues without any hassle.

The opening ceremony at Elizabeth Quay on Tuesday night was well attended, they grouped us all in our national uniforms and walked over to the stage and after all the speeches were made, they put on an Aboriginal culture display and afterwards caught a train to Floreat and drove to the airport to pick my two mates.

The Races

My first event (Wednesday 26/10) was the 8k cross country at the Perry Lakes Reserve near the WA Athletic Stadium, only 400m from our unit.  47 competitors took part in my age group and I finished 21st in a time of 35.47 which was a PB for me. My second race was 5,000m  at the Ern Clark Stadium, Cannington on Saturday 29/10, there were 35 in this track race and I finished 18th in a time of 20.54, the winner did in under 19 minutes, very quick for a ‘senior citizen’.

The 10,000m on the 2/11 was probably my best performance, it was a hot day around 32 degrees and we had to run at 1.40pm, they put a sprinkler on in case some of the competitors wanted to cool off while they were running the 25 times around the track.  I ran the distance in 44.18 and finished 7th outright and the third Australian.

My last event 1,500m at the WAAS is probably the race I don’t want to talk about, finished 3rd last in a time of 6.14, the winner clocked 5.07.  

Touring

On our days off, we went to the Swan Valley to explore Australia’s oldest wine region located just 20 minutes from the city. Many of the vineyards are still owned by descendants of early European settlers. We tasted the fruity red wine and after lunch went along to taste the chocolates and the cheese factory.  Rottnest Island was another island playground we visited just a 30 minute ride on the ferry from Fremantle. The island is car-free so we took the hop-on and hop-off shuttle bus all around the island. The friendly Quokkas, a marsupial unique to WA was regularly seen all around the island. They had push bikes for hire but by the time we arrived on the island, they were all taken.

On the way back home from Rottnest Island, we met these nice Japanese couple on the train. The husband Sono Masao was competing in the games 60 to 64 division. They had this big Japanese flag with signatures all over it, they asked us to put our signatures on it as well. Sono told me that back in 1981 when Robert De Castella won the Fukuoka marathon in 2.08.13,he was also there racing and finished the marathon in 2 hours and 11 minutes.

Meeting John Gilmore

On the second last day of the competition, I had the pleasure of meeting a living legend, 97 year old John Gilmour. He wrote two books, one on the time he was a prisoner of war and one on his running achievements called ‘All in my strides’. When he was making a name for himself as an outstanding runner, he joined the 2/4 machine gun battalion in World War 2, only to be captured at the fall of Singapore. He was sent to Japan in an old ship where he almost went blind from starvation. The great Herb Elliott wrote this about him:’ As an indomitable inspiration, I think it is possible to see him in the same light as Douglas Bader’.

Anyway, at the Championships he ran the 800m in a cool time of 9.19 and the 1500m in a time of 19.35. Not too many 97 year old men could do that. I wish I could if I get to his age.

A worthwhile experience

I participated in these games to learn and gain experience in Olympic track racing so much different to road race competition which I’ve been used to in the past 35 years. Everything was staged to Olympic standard, they call you in half an hour before the race, cross your name off the list, then they put a number on the side of your running shorts and then they march you out onto the track and take your position in the field according to your number. When the official fires the gun you’re off and running and you can hear the crowd cheering you on.

They played the national anthem of all the gold medal winners of every age category - it was interesting listening to the tunes of different nationalities.

The next Masters will be held in Spain in 2018, followed by Toronto in 2020.