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CITY TO SURF – THEN AND NOW
First “City to Surf” 5th September 1971
by Bruce Donnelley, Veteran Turramurra Trotter.
I registered at the Sydney Town Hall basement, receiving my paper bib number 758 with three stickers to stick on and several safety pins. The Race was then sponsored by the then afternoon newspaper “The Sun”. Originally the San Francisco “Bay to Breakers” was the inspiration to hold the Sydney event.
The Race commenced from the corner of Park and George Street, 2017 runners had registered to enter, to cover the 9.4 miles (15.12kms) to Bondi Beach, metric measurement was still to come. Free parking around start area was plentiful, from memory a cold, fine day.
Off we went along Park Street down into William Street then up to Kings Cross, no tunnel then, going down into Rushcutters Bay past the old Stadium.
As limited information had been supplied I just ran not knowing what to expect. No bands, water stops or people hosing you from their homes. Heart Break Hill wasn’t known then, just a steep incline to go up.
On reaching North Bondi I could see Bondi Beach below so increased my pace expecting to finish at the beginning of Campbell Parade.
No such luck! I was told to keep running up Campbell Parade to Queen Elizabeth Drive and back down to the finish. An enjoyable experience, and planned to do more.
I finished in 65 minutes 37 seconds, and placed 757th out of 1700 finishers. Ken Moore from USA finished in 44 minutes and 28 seconds and Beth Standford in 58 minutes 20 seconds.
No medallions given out just a certificate, or even water supplied at the finish. I had given my track suit to a friend who had driven to Bondi to pick me up; again parking was easy and free.
No pick up service of clothing bags was then provided. I couldn’t find my friend, so went to the Bondi Surf Club and they made an announcement. When my friend found me she thought I had an accident or serious medical problem!
Low numbers of runners and spectators at the finish allowed numerous BBQ’s and picnics on the grass area behind the beach. Then no sponsor tents or give-aways.
(Every year the Trotters train for the City to Surf and meet on the grass hill below the Bus queues, where you will see our Blue and Yellow Teardrop banner.
Meet us at the Turramurra Train Station car park start/finish line, 6:15am to 6:30am Saturdays
Run any of the 6 official courses or choose your own distance. The official courses and program are tailored to get you ready for the City to Surf in August each year.
We are also competitive in 5k to 10k fun-runs, half and full marathons, and ultra running. See our favourite events page for more information.
Walk the official course or choose your own distance. See more on the Trekkers page.
|Alan Cole||0418 229 507|
|John Snelson||0416 014 978|
|Peter Welch||0419 834 833|
|Les Bryce||0429 813 351|
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