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October 13, 2011
THE Navy has made it two victories from
two appearances in long-distance run-
ning events in Samoa this year, taking
out the 104km Samoa Perimeter Relay on
Maritime surveillance adviser LCDR Matt
Richardson and technical adviser CPOMT
Mick Hosgood competed as part of the
winning Australian team, which also featured
two Australian Federal Police officers and two
climate change advisers.
The team, dubbed 'Aussie Team Crawl',
won the diplomatic challenge and also the
open men's trophies.
Twelve teams of six runners left the resort
of Sinalei on the south of the island of Upolu
early in the morning and raced around the
island's perimeter, with the finish line in the
"It was a long day of over eight hours
of running up and down big hills in hot and
humid conditions, but it was rewarding to fin-
ish first against some fast international compe-
tition," CPO Hosgood said.
In June, LCDR Richardson and CPOMT
Hosgood finished first and second respectively
in the island nation's Independence Day half-
The team's $600 prize money was donated
to the Little Sisters of the Poor home for the
The RAN advisers will continue the fit-
ness theme in Samoa by helping the Australian
High Commission set up and coordinate fun
runs in Apia, starting this month.
Going the distance in Samoa
SETTING THE PACE: The 'Aussie Team
Crawl' flies the flag for Australia in the
104km Samoa Perimeter Relay.
By LCPL Mark Doran
NAVY reservist divers ABDVR Chris Casey and
ABDVR Phil Riley are planning to compete in
another ultramarathon to help raise money for the
competitors injured in the Kimberly Ultramarathon
on September 2.
The divers from HMAS Stirling were among the
runners in the RacingThePlanet event, which was can-
celled before the end because of a serious bushfire on
Eleven of the 41 competitors in the 100km race
were caught in the fire and two were evacuated to
hospital in Kununurra by helicopter with significant
burns, while three competitors were evacuated by
helicopter for observation and treatment.
ABDVR Chris Casey said although in the days
before the race
it was obvious
there were fires
on the race route,
they seemed to
be burning slow-
ly and posing lit-
Riley and I got
off to a great
start and were
in the top five
for a majority of
the race. In fact
was in third and
closing in on
second when the
race was can-
"It was a
tough race, most
of the time not even following any sort of track, which
meant forcing your way through spinifex on tough,
uneven ground where it was extremely hard to walk
let alone run."
When they reached checkpoint five -- which was
at about the 70km mark -- at about 6pm they were
instructed to wait because a fire ahead was causing a
At that stage they did not know that an emergency
had occurred earlier in the day when the wind had
changed direction and conditions became dangerous
on the route behind them.
ABDVR Casey said the bushfire flared up in a
gully and engulfed experienced ultramarathon runner
Kate Sanderson and part-time model and engineer
"The other competitors were burned when they
rescued the girls from the flames," he said.
"ABDVR Riley and I are obviously hoping for the
best outcome for the girls and we hope to compete in
another race so we can raise money to assist in their
treatment and recovery."
The event, staged by Hong Kong-based adventure
company RacingThePlanet, was to have been staged
over 100km of rugged outback between Kununurra,
the Gibb River Road and El Questro Wilderness Park
in Western Australia.
TAKING THE CHALLENGE:
Reservist divers ABDVR
Phil Riley and ABDVR Chris
Casey prepare to set out
from the starting line at the ill-
fated Kimberly Ultramarathon
on September 2.
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