Ready to Race the Rubeena on Sunday

Owner and operator of the EMV Rubeena Alan Lewis is excited about Sunday's event. Photo: Stefan Bradley

Stefan Bradley

One of the region’s most beloved public sporting events is just a few days away and promises to be bigger and even more fun this year.

The Rotary Race the Rubeena, which takes place this Sunday pits runners against the 110-year-old EMV Rubeena with runners making their way to the Port of Sale on the canal path, while the boat does its best to keep up on the water.

“We’re excited by what this year might bring in terms of numbers,” race director Gerard Callinan said.

“This is our fourth running of the event with each year seeing a larger number than the previous one, so, who knows, maybe we can crack the 400 this year.

“We actually have two events, a 10-kilometre run starting at 7.30am at the Port of Sale, and the Rotary Race the Rubeena 5km, starting at 9am at the Longford Swing Bridge.

All entrants for the 5km are bussed to the Swing Bridge from Race HQ at the Port of Sale.

Once at the bridge and assembled, Wellington Shire Mayor Ian Bye will drop the flag for the race to start.

“It attracts all sorts of people, from the family that use it as a stroll with the kids to the serious speedster who is out to claim a personal best and bragging rights over a mate,” Callinan said.

The day will also see a community festival, starting at 10am at the Port of Sale celebrating the vessel’s 110th Birthday.

The event, run by the Rotary Club of Sale, has raised money for various causes over its life, ranging from the Intensive Care Unit at Sale Hospital to this year’s project, which is the Sale Wetlands Trail, which is about to commence.

The project will see sheeting, boardwalks and improvement to the eastern side of the Sale Common allowing easier access for walkers, runners and cyclists.

Registrations to the Rotary Race the Rubeena can be made at racetherubeena.com.au

Owner and operator of the EMV Rubeena Alan Lewis, said the race had been an opportunity to raise money for the Rotary Club of Sale and Sale Hospital.

“Over the life of the race we’ve raised over $30,000, so it’s a great opportunity to give back to the community,” Mr Lewis said.

“And the 110th birthday of the Rubeena will be celebrated at 10am at the Port of Sale with a whole range of activities.

“We ran a drawing competition for primary and secondary schools, and the first prize for either group is a two-hour hire of the EMV Rubeena, worth about $600, so maybe the winner will invite the rest of their class, so make sure you’re there at 11am on Sunday and we’ll announce the winner of that drawing competition and also cut the Rubeena birthday cake.”

More details on the EMV Rubeena birthday activities can be found at saleheritagecruises.com.au