Two of the five days of the 2010 Christmas 5-Days at Armidale have been completed, with a sprint at the University of New England followed by challenging courses in the complex granite of Banalasta. The turnout has been good, although numerous Queenslanders failed to make the first day (and some the second) after being stranded by floods.
Julian Dent has held sway in Men A so far, winning both days comfortably. His only major opponent on the second day was Swedish international Mats Troeng, who was the only competitor within nine minutes of him. Perhaps the most impressive performance, though, was that of junior Lachlan Dow in the sprint, taking second just ahead of Troeng and Dave Shepherd. Other juniors to impress were Ian Lawford (fifth on day 1) and Joshua Blatchford (third on day 2).
There has been more variety in Women A with a complete changeover of places between the two days. It was an international clean sweep in the sprint, with the Swedes Johanna Oberg and Malin Andersson separated by Lithuanian Rasa Ptasekaite. At Banalasta, though, it was the locals who came to the fore, especially Jo Allison who finished five minutes clear of the field. Anna Sheldon and Tracy Marsh filled the minor placings.
The event continues tomorrow on gully-spur terrain east of Armidale.
Results and splits are available through the 5-days page.