Western Australians embraced the state’s first Oxfam Trailwalker event this weekend, with 1,196 walkers completing the tough charity challenge.
More participants were attracted to Oxfam Trailwalker Perth than in any other inaugural Trailwalker event around the world, and fundraised a staggering $1.3 million for Oxfam’s work helping some of the world’s poorest people out of poverty.
Of 390 teams taking part, the first to finish were three members of “Team 456’s Holiday Xperience”, who finished in 10 hours and 49 minutes.
Oxfam Trailwalker Perth ambassador, ARIA-nominated singer Mama Kin finished with her team Sole Mamas in 29 hours and 41 minutes, cheered across the finish line by her husband, fellow musician John Butler, and their children.
“It feels incredible, it is such an amazing team effort,” she said at the finish line.
“We get to choose this 100km walk adversity and we’re raising funds for people who don’t get to choose their adversity, it’s really poignant. It’s been a really great thing to be involved in.”
David Overend, of Team 456 Holiday Xperience, ran all four Australian events in 2013, (Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney and Perth) in a collective time of 48 hours and 56 minutes, just missing out on his goal of doing all four in less than 48 hours.
“We are so pleased to have achieved what we have. I love Trailwalker events but doing four in a year was a once off. It’s been brilliant though,” he said yesterday.
Due to injuries, Mr Overend’s original team members alternated with other runners, introducing their only female team member Jodie Oborne, 42, from the Australian World Championship ultramarathon squad, who recently moved from Perth to Brisbane.
The fastest team of four walkers across the finish line on Friday was team “Wobblegutz”, who completed the trail in 14 hours and 32 minutes.
Walkers on the trail would also have noticed some familiar faces with the Minister for Local Government Tony Simpson, state MP Ben Wyatt and the oldest participant Tom Weir, aged 76, all mastering the trail.
Oxfam Trailwalker Perth Coordinator Carrie Fletcher said the response from Western Australian residents had been overwhelming, with donations flooding in at a rate of more than $3000 an hour on the first day of the event.
“This weekend thousands of people in Western Australia have given up their time to participate, volunteer and donate to help make this the most successful Oxfam Trailwalker launch in history,” she said.
“Not only have people exceeded our expectations with their generosity towards Oxfam’s life saving work, but the walkers have shown extraordinary strength and determination to complete the tough 100km trail.”
Of the 1476 Oxfam Trailwalker Perth participants:
- 1,196 (81%) walkers finished the trail
- 204 (55%) complete teams of four made it to the finish line
- Average time to complete the 100km was 30 hours and six minutes
- Average amount fundraised per team was $3,585