Fast times recorded at Huntly half
The winners set a cracking pace in yesterday's Huntly Half Marathon, both notching up much improved winning times on last year's efforts.
Timaru's Sam Wreford - who still harbours hopes of qualifying for the Commonwealth Games marathon with time rapidly running out on him - cleaned up the men's title in a time of 1hour 6min 3sec.
He headed Australian second-placegetter Sam Murphy, of Townsville, by what proved a comfortable margin of 4min 46sec.
Wreford's time was also nearly five minutes faster than last year's winning time clocked by Jono Jackson and was nearly a minute quicker than he managed in finishing second two years ago.
But he was outside the cracking pace set by 2012 winner, Kenyan Kip Kemei, who recorded 1:05:28.
North Shore Bays Cougars runner Lydia O'Donnell turned in an impressive run to win the women's half marathon title in a time of 1:16:27, which was nearly four minutes faster than Lisa Robertson's winning time last year and good enough to be fifth fastest overall among the male runners.
Jonny McKee, of Pakuranga, won the men's 10km title in 31:33, while Hamilton City Hawks runner Kirsten Milne took out the women's 10km race in 39:03.
Huntly Half Marathon
Men: Samuel Wreford (Timaru) 1:06:03 1, Samuel Murphy (Townsville) 1:10:49 2, Sasha Daniels (Auckland City) 1:14:13 3.
Women: Lydia O'Donnell (North Shore Bays Cougars) 1:16:27 1, Sue Crowley (Lake City, Rotorua) 1:23:18 2, Kovo Kowalewski (Hamilton Hawks) 1:24:44 3.10km:
Men's winner: Jonny McKee (Pakuranga) 31:33.
Women's winner: Kirsten Milne (Hamilton Hawks) 39:03