March 13, 2023 Live from the road

Canberra, ACT

Reported by Abhijatri Robinson, Prachar Stegemann 13.0 km

The 2023 Australian Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run started on 27 February in Brisbane. Over the last 2 weeks runners have relayed the peace torch over 1600 km to Canberra. Along the way each person who the run has touched has held the torch and made a wish for a more peaceful world.

Today in Canberra athletes were invited to participate in the 4 km and 10 km Fun Run series as part of the arrival of the Peace Run in Canberra.

The Peace Run team arrived early to set up everything for the race and was greeted by a magnificent sunrise sky.

The race starts right next to Lake Burley Griffin and some of Canberra's beautiful landmarks such as Parliament House and the National Library which can both be seen in the distance in this photo.

One of the first jobs was putting up the start/finish arch.

The runner number collection area team get briefed by Stacey.

We were very honoured to have the Peace Torch carried to the start of the race by two very special guest runners and friends of the Peace Run, Andrew Leigh (Federal Assistant Minister for Competition, Charities and Treasury) and Shane Rattenbury (ACT Attorney General).

The final leg of the Peace Torch relay followed a beautiful 3 km route along Lake Burley Griffin. The torch is held here by Shane Rattenbury.

One of the 10 km runners was delighted to hold the Peace Torch with Andrew Leigh and Shane Rattenbury as the relay passed her on its way to the start.

From left to right: Dave Barrie, Assistant Minister Andrew Leigh, Susan Marshall (New Zealand), ACT Attorney General Shane Rattenbury, Gesiane Nascimento (Brazil), Mirabel Gonzales (Guatemala) and Liana Tribaquira (Colombia).

A wonderful display of international and inter-Party cooperation between the runners in the relay team approaching the race start area.

The runners who were about to start their fun-runs were visibly uplifted and inspired by the arrival of the Peace Torch.

Even though the journey of the Peace Torch is symbolic, to the runners it represents the hopes and dreams of each of us for a more peaceful world.

Here the torch relay team is joined by Robert de Castella (second from left), one of Australia's most successful and loved distance runners.

Amalendu prepares to lead the 10 km runners along the course.

And they are off - the start of the 10 km race.

Mirabel joined the 4 km race with the Peace Torch. Runners in the race were invited to join Mirabel in holding and running with the torch.

The 4 km race start.

Ashadeep, who ran with the Torch in Sydney last weekend, on the aid station.

Some of the 10 km runners coming in with a strong finish.

Here Florian Geier and Jo Hegarty hold the Peace Torch with Harita.

The awards for the race were very kindly presented by Robert de Castella.

The Peace Run Team prepares to sing Sri Chinmoy's Peace Run song.

The Peace Runners honoured Pam Muston with a Torch Bearer award. The Torch Bearer award was created to honour people for their contribution to humanity and the creation of a better world for all.

In presenting the award, Susan Marshall said: "I was introduced to Pam when, after the Sri Chinmoy Canberra 100km trail race we both entered was cancelled during Covid, we arranged to run the course together with Andrew Leigh. Pam is considered the Queen of this event, being the only person to have run every edition of this race since 2013, and holding the course records for F50-59 and F60-69.

Pam has won numerous races – Narrabeen Allnighter, the Glasshouse 100 mile, the Centennial Park Ultra 100 km to name a fews. She puts on the amazing Kowen Trail races that raise money for local fire fighters. She has run the Badwater Ultramarathon, training doing stepups in the sauna for three hours at a time. But it’s not the CV that makes her an inspiration, it’s the road path she travelled to get there. At age 49, shortly in to running the Coast to Kosci for the first time, at her own pace, new to ultra running, the race director called to her from his car to slow down, join the others, she would blow up. She said to herself “I have to live and die by the decisions I make,” and continued. She broke the course record by eight hours. This independence, this willingness to take a chance on herself, and offer her whole self to a goal has led to her discovering how to achieve things, and it is why she breaks records.

As a female runner concerned to see a lot of my peers dropping away from the sport as we grow up, I get so much inspiration from looking at Pam and seeing that there is always a way to proceed, whatever our circumstances."

The Peace Torch was then ceremonially handed over to Mick Mudford, representing the Indigenous Marathon Foundation, who will bring the Torch to the Aussie Peace Walk on 25 and 26 March 2023. The Peace Walk organisers have a beautifully painted van!

Stacey and Harita invited the race competitors and friends to hold the Peace Torch and make a wish for Peace. Here Stacey is with 10 km finisher Rebecca Lin.

Mel Moore and Brendan Bartram with the Peace Torch.

Evan Hunter and Lindsay Hamilton hold the Peace Torch.

After Mirabel completed the 4 km race, runners were invited to hold the Peace Torch and make a wish for peace.

Even aspiring little runners seemed to think it was cool.

Gitesh Agarwal with Susan, Stacey and Harita from the Peace Run team.

Susan, Pam Muston and her grandson pause for a moment of peace.

Torch carried by
Abhijatri Robinson (South Africa), Amalendu Edelsten (Australia), Ashadeep Volkhardt (Australia), Balarka Robinson (South Africa), Bayarkhuu Batbayar (Mongolia), Fatima Caal Caal (Guatemala), Gabriel Quentana (Guatemala), Gesiane Nascimento (Brazil), Harita Davies (New Zealand), Liana Tibaquira (Colombia), Mirabel Gonzalez Lopez (Guatemala), Narantuya Batsaihan (Mongolia), Paramananda . (Indonesia), Prabuddha Nicol (Australia), Prachar Stegemann (Australia), Rathin Boulton (Australia), Sarankhuu Jargal (Mongolia), Stacey Marsh (New Zealand), Susan Marshall (New Zealand).  
Accompanied by  
Andrew Leigh, Shane Rattenbury, Dave Barrie
Abhijatri Robinson, Harita Davies, Sarankhuu Jargal
The torch has travelled 13.0 km in Canberra, ACT.

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