Back in Brisbane, and I was staying in Carindale. It’s a large, well-to-do suburb, which means parts of it are not terribly convenient for public transport, if well linked by roads. But it is well served for parkruns, with Wishart, Minnippi and Mansfield within a few kms. I ran the inaugural at Minnippi in November 2013, so the offer of a lift there from my host still wasn’t enough to tempt me. Nor was the idea of getting up before 5 to run to the station in order to hop on a train to Zillmere. Stuff the Z, I’ll go for a nearby one.
All of which sums up my decision – Mansfield QLD, because it was a jog away and because it’ll let me attempt a Mansfield match-up when back in the UK. And, when I looked, there’s a Mansfield, Ohio, with a parkrun, too, so I will take that in if I get near later in the year.
The route is usually on a bikeway which is currently being resurfaced, so they are running an alternate course. It involves three out and back sections, the first heading up and round the water, the second back along there, under the bridge and along the edge of the golf club at the top of the map. Then finally, back along the original path, past the start/finish, out to the bridge that is being worked on, and back.
On a sunny day, 7am felt the ideal start time as the sun climbed in the sky. There’s a gradual climb on the top section, and the 3 u-turns are there to slow you down, so it isn’t the quickest, but is on very good surfaces. The event team were as competent and friendly as ever.
Numbers vary. We had 161 finishers, the same as three weeks before, but the two weeks in between saw 90 and 105 runners. Those are all manageable numbers for the paths, with a nice stream of people coming by on the other side of the path. The inaugural saw 375 runners; plenty of other parkruns in Brisbane for people to visit from, and they have only once got over half that number since. That said, this was only event 39, so there’s plenty of room to grow.