PORT Campbell runner Colin Silcock-Delaney’s commitment to athletics and running was recognised recently.
The 86 year-old received life membership of the Melbourne Marathon Spartans, an exclusive club of the Melbourne Marathon.
Members must run 10 Melbourne Marathons to become eligible for the club, with special milestone singlets given to those runners at 10 (green), 15 (blue), 20 (red) and 25 (black) years.
Hall of Fame status is achieved at 30 years with another special singlet given to those successful to achieve it.
The life membership was sprung on Silcock-Delaney, with the presentation made at the Spartans’ annual general meeting at the MCG’s Jim Stynes Room in September.
As Silcock-Delaney recalled the occasion, he revealed he was so stuck in his ways welcoming the Spartans’ 1000 members that he did not want to follow their simple request for him to stand at the front of the room.
“They said we want you to sit down the front because normally I stand at the back and welcome everyone (at each meeting),” he said.
“Anyway I went down to the front and they presented everyone with their 10 year singlets and next minute I got a shock because they awarded me life membership.
“It was quite a surprise, it came as a complete shock but I’m very proud and very honoured to become a life member.”
Silcock-Delaney ran his first marathon in 1978 and ran one for each of the next 25 years, receiving his green, blue, red and black singlets before he hung up his runners in 2003.
Still eager to be involved, he joined the committee and became an important volunteer at each marathon ever since.
He is set to be front and centre for the Spartans once again this weekend, with the 2019 Melbourne Marathon set to be held on Sunday.
Silcock-Delaney will be there every day from Thursday until Sunday ahead of the event, co-ordinating a Spartans marquee filled with food tables, masseuses and baggage, while he will also complete other general duties.
“I pulled the plug (in 2003) then I went onto the committee (shortly after) and I’ve been on the committee for 10 years,” Silcock-Delaney said.
“There’s a lot of travelling involved but I’ve always loved athletics and I’ve been involved in sport since the 50s with running.
“I get a lot of enjoyment out of it.”
While he will not run the marathon, Silcock-Delaney’s love of competing has not waned, with the veteran taking part in the Oceania Masters Athletics Championships recently.
He came away with six medals from the weeklong event, winning the men’s 85 years 800 and 1500 metre races, the six kilometre cross country event, the two kilometre steeplechase and the five kilometre track run.
Silcock-Delaney was also second in the 400 metres.