THE eleventh annual Great Wheelbarrow Race which finished on Sunday has raised a jaw-dropping $433,000 for charity, making the total raised in the past two years just under the one million dollar mark.
“That is a stunning result and a great effort,” organising committee chairman Councillor Nipper Brown said.
“We had a record-breaking number of teams enter, with 74 teams this year, and we had records set all over the place in the race itself and then, when we totalled up the funds raised, again we were blown away by the outcome.”
“And the icing on the cake is that this year’s event was conducted in high spirits by everyone who took part and everyone pulled up pretty healthy in the end.”
Councillor Brown said the three-day event, which took competitors from Mareeba to Chillagoe in the footsteps of the district’s pioneers, had set an extremely high benchmark.
“Even the weather held out,” he said.
The competitive side of the event saw outstanding efforts turned in, with three records broken.
“In the solo female category (a new category this year, although there have been solo female participants) Sonya Alba-Miller smashed the existing record, pushing her wheelbarrow across 140 kilometres in just 18 hours, 23minutes and 22 seconds. Jenny Hoskins who also competed in the solo female category, was the youngest solo to compete in the race and did an outstanding job, even crossing the finish line with a smile on her face.”
“The duo category record was broken by The Lonely Jokers in a time of 10hrs.53mins.30sec, averaging a cracking 18 kilometres per hour.
The Over 40s record fell to 72 model in a time of 9hrs.03mins.59sec.
I have to commend all of the competitors, their support teams, event volunteers and the organising committee.”
“Much of the preparation goes unseen but this weekend has shown the benefits of all the training, planning and organisation that has consumed so much time in the preceding weeks and months.”
“Dimbulah has a small population but on the Friday night they had more than 1000 people stay there. And then on Saturday night Almaden, with a population measured in two digits, had a similar population explosion,” he said.
“The benchmark has now been set at a very high level for next year’s race but I am sure the region is up to the challenge,” Cr Brown said.
A DVD of this year’s massive event is in production and will be available for purchase shortly from Studio Productions in Cairns.
- Charity fundraisers: winner IndieStructables $106,000.00
- Best theme: winner Flying Ducks
- Talent Quest: winner Dad’s Army
- Ladies teams: Weipa Wags 1, Fitness Divas 2, Wheelie Mad Women 3.
- Mixed teams: Streets Ahead 1, Pushin It 2, Ronald McDonald Fundraisers #2 team 3.
- Men’s teams: The Fit Bucks 1, Shake N Bake 2.
- Over 40s: 72 Model (New Record) 1, Amalgamated Pest Control 2, Spirits in the Sky 3.
- High Schools: Bad Boys 1, Trinity Anglican School 2, Trail Blazers 3.
- Services: Blue Lightning 1, Flying Ducks 2
- Duo: The Lonely Jokers (New Record) 1, Fitzroy Express 2, Bolt & Elite 3.
- Solo female: Busted Bird (Sonya Alba -Miller)1, NPress (Tracey Marcel) 2, Diggers Run (Marilyn McKell) 3.
- Solo male: Jose Lopez 1; Hahn Solo (Shane Ross) 2, Jared Hohns 3.
- Overall winning team: The Fit Bucks.
Great Wheelbarrow Race 2023
Total $2,543,601 which is outstanding for any sporting event.