Martin O’Sullivan

Martin is one of the few parkrunners to have completed every course in New Zealand.

Barcode: A291411

Home parkrun: Lower Hutt

What was your first away parkrun?

Porirua, closest course to Lower Hutt. This was New Year’s Day 2014.

What led you to parkrun tourism?

We had a New Year’s Resolution to complete all NZ courses.

We completed this goal by February 8 with trips to Dunedin, Hamilton Lake, Cornwall Park and Barry Curtis.

In June 2014 a parkrun tourism book was published by Debra Bourne. It had a segment dedicated to NZ tourists, six New Zealand based runners – Julia & Paul Gordon, Kemp Englebretsen, Andrew Capel, my sister Chrissy Robertson & myself had completed all NZ courses.

Over the next few months I ran in Australia at St Peters and Main Beach as well as the home of parkrun Bushy in England.

What’s the earliest you’ve got up to travel to an event and where was it?

I flew from Beijing China a couple of years ago landed at Heathrow, meeting New Zealand parkrun founder Richard McChesney and ran at the picturesque Yeovil Montacute in search of a Y as part of my completed Alphabet challenge.

Last year my boys and I woke at 3am drove to Glasshouse Mountain Conservation parkrun outside of Brisbane Australia. This completed their Staying Alive challenge – three parkruns starting with the letters B and G.

Martin (right) with Lower Hutt founder Richard McChesney and a world tourist at Yeovil Montacute parkrun, UK.

What has been your furthest trip for a parkrun?

I’ve flown from Auckland to Singapore where I have run at East Coast and West Coast parkruns, China to England on a few occasions running four courses in England.

Can you tell us about a memorable parkrun experience in New Zealand?

There has been plenty. The standout was when my boys Trent and James and my sister Chrissy went to Balclutha in the middle of winter. Shivering at the start line I was surprised to see only 11 starters.

It was the day after the school ball and most of the people who looked like athletes were volunteering. I told the boys it was a great opportunity to get a good placing.

I was lucky enough to finish 1st, Trent 3rd, James 7th and Chrissy who was tail walker was 11th, the best finish position for all of us. The other remarkable thing was all 11 athletes were the fastest in their age group that day

Where in New Zealand would you like a parkrun and why?

Stewart Island as I’ve never been there.

Lower Hutt parkrun in the early days when the kids did all the volunteer roles. Many of these kids have done over 100 runs now.

2 replies on “Martin O’Sullivan”

Great photo of all the kids Martin – they’ve certainly grown up now and good to see that some of them have stuck with parkrun too.

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