Runners make trek to Whitehaven
RUNNING: With the Great Whitehaven Beach Run getting bigger, it's only fitting the event is attracting international entrants.
Americans Rachel Kipper and Julianna Maxwell participated in the half-marathon and said it was amazing.
For Kipper, from Kansas, it was her first half-marathon.
"The 21km flew by with the beautiful scenery," she said.
"I started looking for half-marathons all around Sydney and the Great Whitehaven Beach Run seemed to be the best option.
"This weekend was absolutely amazing and I would love to participate in the race again."
Julianna Maxwell, from Texas, was also impressed with the race.
"It was by far the most beautiful and challenging half-marathon I've ever done," she said.
"With full sun exposure, sand and wind half the time, it was definitely a physical challenge. But how could anyone feel dismayed when they're running on that beautiful of a beach?
""This race was one of the smaller ones I've participated in but it was so well organised and put on that it has become my favourite race of all."
Maxwell, who is studying in Sydney, said she'd love to come back.
"I was so pleased that the race atmosphere of the Great Whitehaven Beach run was so welcoming and encouraging to us," she said.
"From strangers giving me a thumbs up mid-race to the couple I sat next to on the ferry cheering me on as I finished, I really felt like a part of the Whitsundays community this weekend."