NARELLE Patrick may have been the beneficiary of one of the smaller fields in this year’s Orange Colour City Running Festival, but she’s not complaining.
Patrick, from Yass, was the first female across the line in the festival’s inaugural marathon, edging out a tiny field of five women - in all 88 athletes took up the marathon challenge - to be crowned the women’s winner for 2013.
Struggling with a sore calf muscle following the arduous 42.2 kilometre run, Patrick was battling both the elements and thirst following close to three and a half hours of running.
But again, she wasn’t complaining.
“It was a good course,” Patrick said.
“I think I was fortunate there wasn’t a great deal of competition.
“It was very encouraging though.”
Kicking off the festival’s proceedings at 6.30am yesterday morning, Patrick said one of the more difficult challenges on the Gosling Creek, Spring Hill looped marathon circuit was that thrown up by Mother Nature.
“There was a bit of side wind then head wind ... I don’t think I caught any tail wind unfortunately,” Patrick smiled.
Like most runners in the season’s first marathon event, Patrick used the Orange run as a training barometer for future runs.
Admitting she didn’t run the best time, Patrick was still pleased with the final outcome.
“My training partner came second in the half, she’s training for a 45 (kilometre race). That’s quite encouraging.”
“It was a great atmosphere. There were small groups of people cheering you on which was great.”