Presented with his winning sash after the 2016 Lindsay Kent Memorial Fun Run, Alan Craigie challenged the chasers to do their best to beat him when he returned the next year.
"You won't, but it will be fun to try!" the 35-year-old announced.
Canberra-based Craigie was joking, but his statement proved prophetic when he was first to finish the 5km charge in 2017 and 2018, his fifth Lindsay Kent in the past six years. His only defeat since 2013 came in 2014, when his brother Kevin was first to the timekeepers. Craigie's sister-in-law was the first woman to finish in 2016.
The 2019 fun run this Sunday presents a new challenge, away from the traditional start and finish in the Stawell racecourse car park, to a street circuit that starts at the Town Hall, includes laps of Central Park and Cato Park, Maud Street, Holt Street, the Scenic Drive to the top of Big Hill and down Main Street to finish at the Town Hall.
"It sounds like fun," Craigie said, anticipating the test of steel uphill, which should pose no problem for him. Hill training is part of his weekly training ritual.
Craigie, who has visited Stawell every Easter since 2008, has been battling a persistent cold, which should give the challengers some hope this weekend. "I'm a year older and really all it takes is someone to come along who is faster than I am. And if I'm beaten there's always the Beer Run afterwards in which I won't be beaten."
The 3km run or walk does not include Big Hill. Start time for both events is at 9am.