International Battle Set to Run on Bridge

Buoyed by another big summer of Australian athletics and the outlook of an Olympic year, the Think Big Run The Bridge has once again attracted a world class field on Sunday 18th February.
February 5, 2024

Headlined in the Spectran Group 10km women’s field by African Under 20 record holder over 3000m Aynadis Mebratu.  The Ethiopian is in career best form having set a personal best over 5000m of 14:44.95 in Boston last week.

Despite a lifetime best in the ½ marathon of 1:07:45, the dual African medallist is yet to cover the 10km road race distance.  

“I’m looking forward to my first trip to Australia and especially Hobart to take part in the 10K. I’m coming off my fist races indoor in Boston and am looking forward to getting back on the roads, I’m looking forward to holding off the chasing pack of men!!,” Mebratu said, referring to the unique battle of the sexes concept.

Mebratu will receive a 3min 53sec head start on the men, which will include fellow Ethiopians Yohanes Asmare and Gedifaye Adugnaw, along with Belgian star Robin Hendrix.

For Gedifaye, it will be only his second major race and first outside of Ethiopia.  The 19 year old has an 8:37 steeplechase under his belt from the 2022 Ethiopian Championships, but is looking forward to his first trip abroad.

“This is a great opportunity for me, and my first trip to compete outside of Ethiopia, I will have a couple of races here in Australia before taking on the 10K,” Gedifaye said.

While Asmare is only 17 years of age, he ran a 3:55.96 mile also in Boston last month, so will also look to make his debut in a world class road race.

29 year old Hendrix will bring experience to the international field.  With a claim to being the fastest ever Belgian on the roads over 5km and a 10,000m PB of 28:01.65, he will be leading a charge to take the $8000 line honours.  

“I am delighted to be able to compete in Australia over the 10km distance. It fitted very well with my plan on the back of my participation in the Melbourne Continental Tour Gold meet. I have a love for street races and can't wait to toe the line soon,” Hendrix said.

The Spectran Group 10km is the richest 10km road race in Australia.  The elite women receive a 3minute 53 second headstart on the men, which is the difference between the course records.  Prizemoney is paid as athletes cross the line, irrespective of gender;

1st - $8000

2nd -$4000

3rd - $2000

4th - $1000

5th - $800

6th - $400

7th - $200

8th - $100

9th - $100

10th - $100

All four will race the Maurie Plant Meet in Melbourne on Thursday 15th February as part of their Australian tour.