The Forster Running Festival has been heralded a success after a record number of competitors took to the course on Sunday, September 10.
More than 1500 runners competed across several events such as the half marathon (21.1 kilometres), 10 kilometre run and five kilometre fun run.
Gold Coast ultra-marathon competitor Anthony Farrugia was the first over the line in the half-marathon in one hour, 14 minutes and 25 seconds.
Josie Pepper was the first female across in one hour, 30 minutes and 37 seconds.
In the 10 kilometre run, James Alexander claimed victory in 34 minutes and 19 seconds.
Erin Doyle was the first in the female division in 42 minutes and 30 seconds.
Port Macquarie’s Harry Jones took out the five kilometre fun run in 16 minutes and 32 seconds.
Race organiser Kevin Chilvers credited Harry for his ability to recover from severe fatigue in the aftermath of the 10 kilometre run to back up and win the fun run.
“I had to nearly catch him as he came across the finish line,” Kevin said.
Junior runner Anneliese Cains showed blistering pace to finish first in the female division in 19 minutes and five seconds.
Some runners mustered the energy to complete the ‘Triple Bridge Buster’- the half marathon, 10 kilometre and five kilometre events.
Barry Keem from North Wollongong took top honours in an impressive time of two hours, eight minutes and 30 seconds. Anthony Farrugia was second.
“It was a tight tussle,” Kevin said.
Meanwhile, the Indigenous Marathon Foundation RAW Port Macquarie Group were recognise as the largest group participating on the day.
Kevin was pleased with the event's turnout, with at least 50 per cent of competitors coming from outside of the area.
He highlighted his encouragement of all runners to keep pushing through the course and to have fun while doing so.
All participants are encouraged to tackle the Port Macquarie Running Festival on March 11, 2018.