‘Chillagoe Fossil’ ready to break the 1000km mark in 2012 Great Wheelbarrow Race

When Jon Booth celebrates his 76th birthday a few days after the 2012 Great Wheelbarrow Race, he wants to also celebrate another milestone – breaking the 1000km mark.

Jon has competed in every Wheelbarrow Race since its inception in 2004, but ran the first two years as part of a team, and while he has competed in the past 6 races as a solo competitor, Jon has yet to reach the 1000km mark.

“I only counted the kilometres I ran with the teams for the two years and now as a solo competitor for the past six years, so I will break the 1000km mark this year,” he said.

Known as the Chillagoe Fossil, Jon has become somewhat of a hero to many young competitors who marvel at his courage in taking on the gruelling 140km race by himself.

Jon says he has been training about five times a week, but will start to push even harder in the next few weeks to get ready for the three-day event which is held from 18-20 May.

Jon will be one of around 450 competitors this year who take on the race from Mareeba to Chillagoe, with organisers reminding prospective runners to nominate for the race by 27 April.

Those who wish to nominate should go to the new website, www.greatwheelbarrowrace.com which contains all the information on the race – from photos and videos of past events, to race results and fundraising activities since the event began.

Participants can nominate and pay their entry fee on-line, as well as finding out all the rules and regulations of the event.

Categories include Teams (female, male or mixed) of up to 10 people, Solo competitors, Over 40s, School Students and Services (Police, SES, Firefighters, Defence Forces).

Nominations close no later than close of business on 27 April 2012. Teams are encouraged to register and pay online by going to www.greatwheelbarrowrace.com Forms can also be obtained from Council’s website at www.trc.qld.gov.au or from the nearest Council Service Centre.