The countdown is on to the first virtual Beachside Dash Fun Run, with registrations closing at midnight tonight before the events start tomorrow.
Now in its 13th year, the annual Beachside Dash Fun Run has become a much-loved event for people of all abilities, from elite runners to families, school communities and teams from hospitals and businesses in St George and Sutherland Shire.
It usually takes place at Dolls Points but the major fundraiser for the St George and Sutherland Medical Research Foundation (SSMRF) had to be done differently this year due to COVID-19, with participants instead invited to complete their own event any time between 5am, Friday, November 27, and 10pm, Sunday, November 29.
SSMRF chief executive Leanne Dib said it was wonderful to see the community support the Dash in its virtual format.
"We thank everyone who has supported the Dash this year. We have many long-term dashers returning this year, plus many new ones too, including from Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania," she said.
"One local boy who came second in his category last year is aiming to take out first place this year. We wish him the best of luck".
Another participant is Dr Michal Szczesniak, a St George Hospital based researcher who has signed up for the 21.5km Dash.
"I love volunteering at this event and supporting the SSMRF and the wonderful work they do for our hospitals, and I am excited this year that I can compete and take on the new half marathon," he said.
Everyone who registers receives a Beachside Dash pack, including an official race bib, finishers medal and cheer stix.
Entrants download an official tracking app, mark their own course, choose their race event - 2km, 5km, 10km or 21.5km.
Ambassadors and sporting heroes, former St George Illawarra Dragons player Jason Nightingale and former world champion triathlete Craig Alexander have thrown their support behind this year's Dash.
They will join the St George Bank Happy Dragon on Saturday on a 21.5km relay course, starting at Flow Espresso cafe at Kogarah. They will run past St George Hospital, across Taren Point Bridge to Sutherland Hospital, then run back across Tom Ugly's Bridge, before finishing at St George Hospital.
Along the way, they will be joined by St George Hospital doctors, researchers, St.George Bank staff and SSMRF directors, supporters and staff.
Georges River mayor Kevin Greene will join the last leg of the relay from Harold Fraser Oval to St George Hospital.
Registrations are open until midnight tonight. Entry is $20 for a single, or $15 per person for groups of two or more.
Details: For information and entry forms click here.