GRITTY EFFORT: National cross country medallist Jude Thomas with his proud parents Maree and Michael after his superb run at Maleny.
ATHLETICS: Ipswich runner Jude Thomas is celebrating a hat-trick of achievements at the Australian Cross Country Championships over the weekend.
The Ipswich and District Athletic Club competitor shared in a first, second and third at the hotly contested championships at Maleny on the Sunshine Coast.
In cool conditions, he finished an amazing third overall to a New Zealander in his race for athletes aged 16 and 17 years.
Being Oceania Championships with many Pacific countries competing, Thomas also claimed the silver medal for Australia and a bronze in the Oceania arena.
He completed a memorable performance by being a member of the Queensland team that won gold in all aspects of the championships. The Victorian team was second with the New Zealand competitors third and NSW fourth.
With a lap to go testing journey, Thomas was in 14th position.
However, the gritty runner worked his way into a medal-winning performance,
He finished the race in 20 minutes and 30 seconds.
He was cheered on his by parents, grandparents and the NANCI running group, which are based at Limestone Park.
Another club athlete Tamara Carvolth finished a gallant sixth in the Australian Open Women’s 10km Cross Country Championships.
Having won the recent state title at the same venue, Carvolth was the first Queenslander home in a time of 39 minutes and 47 seconds.
Leading the Queensland team home to a silver medal was a remarkable achievement.
A third club athlete, Holly-Maree Matthew, came a creditable 20th in the 10 years girls 2km Australian Cross Country Championship.
Her time was eight minutes and 26 seconds.
Holly was the fifth Queenslander across the line to ensure the home state team won the silver medal.