IT WAS back-to-back victories as Andy Buchanan broke the Bendigo Centre open and track records in Friday night’s 5km Frenzy at the Flora Hill track.

Bendigo University’s star went into the 12 ½ lap showdown put on by Bendigo Harriers as one of the favourites.

Race two of the classic played an important role in the Bendigo Harriers Athletics Club’s 100-year celebrations.

Buchanan, 30, shattered his own Bendigo Centre open and track records as he ran 14:10.12 to defeat Mentone’s Seth O’Donnell, 14:16, at the Retreat Road complex.

Despite cold and windy conditions, racing was action-packed as athletes ran through lit-up marquees on the finishing straight.

Pacemakers Brady Threlfall from Bendigo Harriers and Matt Buckell from University upped the intensity from the gun.

At three laps to go, Buchanan hit the front near the throws cage at the top of the back straight and powered away.

Bendigo Harriers’ Nathan Stoate was third in 14:27.20 as Moama-based Archie Reid, a member of South Bendigo Athletics Club, ran 14:33.54 to be fourth.

Bendigo University’s Ned Buckell clocked 14:42.10 to break the long-held Bendigo centre record of 14:48.8 for under-20s set by Echuca’s Malcolm Norwood at the Epsom track on January 30, 1982.

Buchanan was rapt to be racing before a home crowd.

“To have a race like this near home is great.”

Buchanan said the race plan was for a late attack on the back straight.

“I always look to take advantage of the wind and put pressure on others to go or stay with me.”

He was rapt with the performance of so many Bendigo Bats team-mates who he races with in cross-country events or trains with.

“There were many great runs across the night.

“For Ned (Buckell) to break a record that’s been held for such a long time was a fantastic achievement.”

Buchanan’s goal was all about running as well as he could and not focus on time.

“I was really surprised to run 14:10, especially in these conditions.

“For a lot of the race I was happy to stay in fourth or fifth place and be sheltered from the wind as much as possible.

“I knew the race would be tougher than last year, and it was.”

Buchanan said last month’s result in the Zatopek 10,000m at Lakeside Stadium was a “motivation tool” going into the Frenzy.

“The Zatopek hit-out was not my best.

“I was determined to run much harder and for longer this time.”

Buchanan also praised the performances of Ned Buckell, Nathan Stoate, and all of the Bendigo Bats for their support of the event.

“A record by Ned, a personal best by Nathan, and lots of fast times by other Bendigo athletes is reward for all their hard work.”

Buchanan has not given up on his goal to run a marathon this year.

Klein clicks to another gear in Elite Women’s Race

FRANKSTON’S Sarah Klein clicked through the gears as she broke away on the last two laps to win the elite women’s 5km Frenzy in 16:35.35.

Big-race experience, which included 10th place in the marathon at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games, was a decisive factor for the long-time athlete.

It was Klein’s first hit-out on the Flora Hill track, but she had previously competed in the Coliban Ekiden Relay from Harcourt to Bendigo.

“This was a great hit-out for me,” said Klein.

“I would have liked to have gone a little faster, but conditions were not easy.”

Klein and Amy Carrig, racing on invitation basis, had a great tussle for the lead on many laps.

As the race rolled on it was Klein who upped the pace and was able to surge clear across the final 800 metres.

Klein will continue to train up to 150 kilometres a week in the build-up to the Newcastle Marathon in April.

Runner-up in the 5km Frenzy was Carrig, 16:40.49, from Simone McInnes of St Stephens in 17:37.18.

Coburg teenager Niamh Tabit ran 17:42.08 and equalled the Bendigo under-20 track record set on January 14, 2003 by South Bendigo’s Clare McKechnie.

A rising star at South Bendigo, Taryn Furletti clocked 18:49.71 as University’s Rebecca Wilkinson, 19:06, and Harriers’ Alice Wilkinson, 19:17, ran well in a gruelling test.


All photos by: Bendigo Photos –

Mixed Heats bring excitement

The night’s racing began with a 1000m Frenzy for the under-14s where University’s Ebony Woodward and Bendigo Harriers’ Keelan McInerney led the way.

Among those to break a record in the 5km Frenzy was University’s Stephen Van Rees as he ran 16:04.31 to break the track record for the 40-plus class in the last of the mixed 5000m heats.

The first heat was won by James Miller of Ballarat Harriers.

Melbourne University’s Jack Melleuish beat Bendigo University’s Matthew Schepisi in heat two.

5km Frenzy Results

Elite men:

Andy Buchanan 30, Bendigo University 14:10.12 (Bendigo centre open record, and Open track record); Seth O’Donnell 20, Mentone 14:16.24; Nathan Stoate 22, Bendigo Harriers 14:27.20; Archie Reid 20, South Bendigo 14:33.54; Toby Menday 26, Ballarat Harriers 14:33.85; Ben Kelly 25, Glenhuntly 14:35.58; Benjamin Beischer 20, Old Scotch 14:36.18; Harrison Bagley 22, Adelaide Harriers 14:39.23; Lachlan Herd 23, Casey Cardinia 14:40.67; William Collins 20, Knox 14:41.84; Ned Buckell 19, Bendigo University 14:42.10 (Bendigo centre under-20 record, and Bendigo under-20 track record); Cael Mulholland 17, South Australia 14:43.09; Harry Smithers 30, St Stephens 14:47.86 14; Callum Drake 29, Western Athletics 15:18.97; Jamie Cook 30, Bendigo Harriers 15:23.24; Matt Buckell 19, Bendigo University DNF; Matthew Gluyas 23, South Australia DNF; Brady Threlfall 34, Bendigo Harriers DNF.

Elite women:

Sarah Klein 36, Frankston 16:35.35; Amy Carrig 29, Invitation 16:40.49; Simone McInnes 30, St Stephens 17:37.18; Niamh Tabit 16, Coburg 17:42.08 (equal Bendigo under-20 track record); Simone Brick 27, South Melbourne 18:33.98; Taryn Furletti 18, South Bendigo 18:49.71; Rebecca Wilkinson 26, Bendigo University 19:06.27; Alice Wilkinson 35, Bendigo Harriers 19:17.36.

Mixed 5km Frenzy Races:

Heat one:

James Miller 33, Ballarat Harriers 18:15.01; Matthew Grange 35, Invitation 19:05.25; Andrew Kraulis 41, Invitation 19:09.39; David Cripps 50, Bendigo University 19:36.52; Benjamin Drenovac 21, Invitation 19:39.37; Patrick Allen 28, Invitation 19:58.97; Aaron Norton 42, South Bendigo 20:05.01; David Heislers 56, Bendigo University 20:06.33; Zac Lunnon 18, Invitation 20:32.01; Greg Hilson 52, South Bendigo 20:40.33; Chris Timewell 47, South Bendigo 21:03.28; Briar Sefo 37, Invitation 21:19.08; Sam Lawless 34, Invitation 21:22.31; Narelle Frichot 37, Hamilton 22:10.69; Caroline Macdonald 63, Hamilton 22:36.82; Claire Hilsdon 38, Hamilton 23:19.87; Kevin Shanahan 66, Eaglehawk 24:40.77.

Heat two:

Jack Melleuish 20, Melbourne Uni. 17:03.70; Matthew Schepisi 38, Bendigo University 17:04.92; Josh Christensen 19, Invitation 17:08.40; Liam Christensen 21, Invitation 17:12.95; Chris Armstrong 39, Invitation 17:18.36; Mitch Murray 30, Ballarat Harriers 17:29.36; Rory Flanagan 41, Bendigo University 17:48.29; David Hilsdon 40, Hamilton 17:48.85; Charles Jacobson 41, Diamond Valley 17:49.80; Hamish Morcom 28, Invitation 17:51.90; Trent Bowes 23, Invitation 17:54.61; Octavia Power-Priede 25, Invitation 18:00.68; Mike Bieleny 59, Bendigo University 18:03.12; Luke Brophy 47, Invitation 18:05.31; Andrew Creer 50, Bendigo University 18:10.23; Nick McDermott 47, Bendigo Harriers 18:38.20; Taine Lang 18, Bendigo Harriers 18:44.30.

Heat three:

Brett Ellis 27, Williamstown 15:06.65; Max Savill-Bentley 21, Yarra Ranges 15:17.71; Brian McGinley 33, Bendigo University 15:33.86; Ned Verwey 28, Frankston 15:47.39; Patrick Jaffe 23, Melbourne Uni. 15:48.11; Jordan Mayston 32, Eureka 15:53.32; Simon Hanns 29, Collingwood 16:01.05; Brodie Nankervis 27, Invitation 16:01.55; Stephen van Rees 40, Bendigo University 16:04.31 (Bendigo track  record, 40-plus); Richie Egan 22, Invitation 16:05.39; Thomas Lyon 22, Ballarat Harriers 16:05.62; Nigel Preston 38, Bendigo University 16:12.17; Ben Haseler 25, Old Xaverians 16:14.33; Andrew Leggo 35, Mentone 16:17.34; Alexander Murray 25, Invitation 16:25.22.

Mixed under-14 1000m Frenzy:

Ebony Woodward 13, Bendigo University 3:40.69; Keelan McInerney 11, Bendigo Harriers 3:51.77; Charli McInerney 13, Bendigo Harriers 4:13.15; Luke Hilsdon 11, Hamilton 4:19.28; Spencer Hilsdon 10, Hamilton 4:19.68; Charlie Frichot 7, Hamilton 4:48.51.