The sun shone down on Fethiye last week for the first ever Race for Life Turkey.
The Children’s Race took place on Saturday 11th April.
Under cloudless, blue skies, it was relaxed and fun.
Some furry animals came along to help.
Everyone there had great fun and enjoyed themselves in the sunshine.
A proud weekend for Fethiye
The Adult’s Race filled the town square on the following day, Sunday 12th.
It was proud day for the town as a large percentage of the 480 registered
participants turned up in their red tee-shirts and running shoes, all ready to go.
The organising team were busy until the last minute handing out registration packs.
But before the race started there was a warm-up session, in which everyone
limbered up. Every precaution had been taken to prevent injuries and dehydration.
But a serious one too…
Race for Life – Turkey is about cancer: awareness, research and facilities in
Fethiye, Muğla and Turkey.
Not everyone can fight the disease, and to remember them, there was
a minute’s silence to remember friends and loved ones who had lost their battles.
The Turkish National Anthem rang out across the town square.
Time for action…
Up on the central stage, with microphones in hand, George Rimmer and
Sina Deniz Öge stirred up enthusiasm and anticipation
amongst participants and spectators alike. As always, they did an amazing job.
The adrenaline began to take effect.
At 9.50am sharp the four participants using wheelchairs started their race.
Christine Rimmer, who was the inspiration behind the plan to hold the race,
had intended to run in the race but a torn ligament ended that hope.
As a result she competed in a wheelchair along with Alan Askin,
Fethiye’s Association for the Physically Disabled was represented by chairman,
Mustafa Bozbaş, and Hasan Doygün.
Of the 480 the registered 40% were Turkish. Although not everyone who had
registered turned up on the day, there was a wonderful crowd at the start line,
with the elite pack in the front and the slower runners, joggers and strollers, at the rear.
There were mothers with their children in buggies, people with dogs on leads
and men and women of all ages and ability, from a variety of different counties.
After all this was always about covering the 5km track in any way possible.
It wasn’t really a ‘race’ as such for the majority but a grand day out in the spring
sunshine, and a brilliant, totally novel way for Turkey in general and Fethiye in particular,
to raise money and awareness to fight cancer.
At 10am on the dot the race got under way, with much support and cheering from onlookers.
The course followed the glorious harbour walk (Kordon as it is known in Turkish)
with runners heading up towards the Courthouse and State Hospital on the borders of Çalış.
In an incredibly short time there were loud cheers and applause as the winners came into sight.
Over the following hour people crossed the finishing line,
justifiably proud of their achievements.
The very last people to cross the finish line were a group of women who
called themselves the SLOWMOS (see headline photo),
and they too received a mighty cheer from the onlookers and other runners.
The medals were given by Mustafa Şıkman, Fethiye’s Honorary British Consul
and Treasurer of FETAV, the official organization that makes all fund raising
activities in Fethiye possible.
Hip hip hurray!
Men’ Race for Life
1st. 315: Matthew Bennion, 18.47
2nd. 415: Sadi Özgen, 19.14
3rd. 75: Mustafa Kızıltaş, 19.39
Women’s Race for Life
1st. 102: Sevil Toker, 24.37
2nd. 426: Alex Dean, 25.17
3rd. 414: Burcu Özgen, 26.02
Wheel chair users Race for Life
1st. 4: Alan Askin
2nd. 1: Christine Rimmer
3rd. 271: Mustafa Bozbaş
4th. 273: Hasan Doygün
(Sorry, no times yet but will add ASAP)
Every single person, of every age, who ran, jogged, rolled or strolled around the
5km track had a wonderful day and the photos of them crossing the line clearly show.
On the day after the event, George Rimmer told Fethiye Times:
I am absolutely delighted by the way everything went.
This was the first Race for Life in Turkey and both the children’s and the adult
events were beyond our expectations.
Of course, there are some things we would have done differently but we shall
know for next time.
On behalf of the committee I would like to say thank you to everyone who
came along, helped and supported the event.
I would also like to thank ESNAF Hospital, who provided a standby ambulance
and on course paramedics, over both days.
Water company, DAMLA who provided 800 bottles of water to keep everyone
The post race entertainers were wonderful, acrobats and musicians were perfect to close our event.
ALEM FM, you were a blast, and we loved our time in the boogie bus over the weekend
while you broadcast our event nationally to the Turkish Nation, you guys really helped.
BIG ISTANBUL GRUBU, our main sponsor, Bulent from I Fethiye Computers,
you did a great job on our website and creative design.
Sina Deniz Oge, from the International Mediterranean English Language School, your help was amazing.
Finally, all of you, thanks for turning up and taking part.
But in the end it comes down to this objective:
CANCER WE’RE COMING TO GET YOU”
The committee now have the daunting task of collecting all the sponsorship money.
The last day for this is 31st May, so if you have pledged money, please don’t forget.
Dawne Buyukkoca summed the day up beautifully,
It was a great day and a real privilege to take part in
Fethiye’s first ever Race for Life – Turkey.
I am already looking forward to next year…”
Fethiye Times have now made a Race for Life – Turkey slide show, showing highlights from the day.
In addition to these we have hundreds of photos taken at the finish line, so if you see a photo you like,
or think there may be one of you, a loved one or friend please ask us by sending
an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are not charging for them but do please make a donation to Race for Life.
For more information about Race for Life – Turkey and how to donate, please click here.
All photographs, unless otherwise indicated, are the property of Fethiye Times.