Lake Macquarie Fernleigh 15

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Lake Macquarie Fernleigh 15 – Sunday 18 October 2015
| 8:00am – 15km |

The 4th edition of the annual Lake Macquarie Fernleigh 15 is proudly supported by Lake Macquarie City Council.

Test yourself on the iconic Fernleigh track which will be closed to all other traffic. It is an accurate 15 km run featuring the NSW 15 km Championships in 2015 but most importantly welcomes runners and walkers of all abilities. The Lake Macqurie Fernleigh 15 is an experience for everyone!

Run the track, Newy to Lake Mac!” 

Early entries close Midnight Monday 5th of October, enter now! 


The Fernleigh 15 takes in all 6 stations of the Fernleigh Track: Adamstown, Kahibah, Whitebridge, Redhead, Jewells and Belmont

An interactive course map is below. To view the map make sure your browser allows third party scripts.




Why run the Fernleigh 15?
This is the only chance to run on the iconic Fernleigh track which will be closed to all other traffic! The course is a certified 15 km and will also feature the NSW 15 km Championships in 2015. Regardless of your ability the Fernleigh 15 is an experience, not just a run. Pass through suburban settings before running through the iconic Pacific Highway tunnel linking Newcastle and Lake Macquarie jurisdictions. Run through the leafy Glenrock reserve and then past the historic coastal town of Redhead. The run culminates with a ripping last km over boardwalk sections of paperbark swamp and finishing at the Belmont railway platform.

Make the Fernleigh 15 your target event this spring!

Start Times
Wave W: Wheelies 7:55AM
Wave 1: Runners Seeded/Open wave 8:00AM
Wave 2: Runners 35-44yrs 8:05AM
Wave 3: Runners 45-54yrs 8:10AM
Wave 4: Runners 55+ & Walkers 8:15AM

Entry Fees

Standard: $40 (closes 5:00pm Friday 2nd Oct EXTENDED UNTIL MIDNIGHT MONDAY 5TH OCTOBER)
Late: $50 (closes 5:00pm Thursday 15th Oct)
On the day: $50 (from 6:30am on race morning)

Manual entries will cost $50 and can be lodged at the Event Registration  (Friday 16th Oct and Saturday 17th Oct) and on race morning from 6:30am.


The Fernleigh 15 Coaching sessions are now up and going. It is not too late to join in the final two session with evergreen runner Garry Wells. Garry is the founder of Five30 Runners and is a Level 2 Accredited Coach. There is still one session to go! 
Session 1 – Wed 9th September
Session 2 – Wed 23th September
Session 3 – Wed 7th October
Location: Newcastle Athletics Field, Smith St Newcastle West
Times: 5:30pm – 6:40pm
Cost: All THREE sessions – $30 | One session only – $20 

Register for the coaching sessions here




Technical running t-shirts or singlets with Fernleigh 15 branding can be purchased for $15 when you register.

Early Race Kit Collection
Race kits can be collected before race day at the Greater Building Society from Westfield Kotara.
Friday 16th October 9am – 5pm
Saturday 16th October 9am – 12pm
Remember to bring confirmation of your entry or personal ID to pick up. Should you pick up for someone else you will need a copy of their race entry confirmation.

On the Day Race Kit Collection
Sunday 18th October: 6:30am – 8:00am St Pius X High School, off Park Ave then Fletcher St, Adamstown. Allow for crowds and parking.

The Start Area

The Start Area is St Pius X High School, Adamstown. This year the Start Area will be on the bottom south western section of the school off Fletcher St. Access is via Fletcher St. There will be ample parking for 300-400 cars. Check in will occur under a cola area with toilets, bag drop, warm up facilities and a coffee vendor all nearby.


We will marshal each start group 15 minutes before their start time. Ushers will lead the group down to the the start line arriving 10 minutes before their alloted start time. Officials will call participants from the Start Waiting Area to the Start line 5 minutes before the Start Time. Below is the list of marshalling times for each starting wave.

Marshalling 1: Runners Seeded/Open wave 7:45AM
Marshalling 2: Runners 35-44yrs 7:50AM
Marshalling 3: Runners 45-54yrs 7:55AM
Marshalling 4: Runners 55+ & Walkers 8:00AM

Car parking and the Shuttle Bus
Cars may be left at St Pius X High School until 12:00pm. Kotara Westfield will also be available for parking is within walking distance of the start event area. Westfied Kotara is located off Park Ave and Northcott Drive.
A shuttle bus service will run every 30 minutes from the finish line back to Westfield Kotara and St Pius X. Purchase your bus ticket when you register.

Bag Drop and Transport
A bag droop and transport service will be available to take bags to the finish line from the Start Area. Bags will be left in a ‘secure baggage’ area at the Belmont finish line for collection after the race. No items are to be left at the start area. It is NOT recommended that you place precious items in transported bags.

The Finish Line


The map above shows the finish line area at Railway Pde, Belmont. There is ample parking around the Belmont Tafe precinct and a short walk to the finish line. The shuttle bus will stop within metres of the ‘Recovery Area’ making it easy for runners exiting the recovery area to grab their bag and hop onto the shuttle bus.

There will be coffee, drinks and a BBQ operating at the finish line along with the Central Coast Runners Shop runnersshop

Results will live via NSW live results. Final results will be available from the results tab on this website

We are fortunate in being able to present several prizes over the course of the day. All prizes and places aside from the overall top three will be taken from ‘Net Time’. This is the time recorded for each participant from the time they cross the start line until the time they cross the finish line.

Prizes for top three males and females and wheelies are as follows;
1st – $500
2nd – $300
3rd – $200

Top three men and women in each of the three categories will recieve a RunNSW medal while the top three eligible runners will recieve an Athletics NSW Championship medal. In addition the winners of these categories will receive a pair of Nike shoes from the Central Coast Runners Shop or a Lorna Jane gift pack.
Open (14-34yrs)
Masters (35-44yrs)
Masters + (45-54yrs)
Grandmasters (55+)

Note: The minimum age for participation is 14yrs and all categories are age on the day.
Seeded runners are those capable of finishing under 60 minutes OR participating in the NSW 15km Championships. These runners are permitted to start at the FRONT of the Open Category wave.

Teams of any size can be formed with the top 4 finishers from a team to score.
To enter a team simply ‘create’ new team in the registration portal and have your friends select it when they enter. There is no added cost to create or join a team.

Aid Stations
Aid/drink stations will be provided at the start, finish, 3km, 5.1km, 9.5km and 12km marks. Electrolyte drink and water will also be available at the 9.5km, 12km and finish line water stains. First Aid will be located at several points along the course and the finish line.

The event requires over 50 unpaid volunteers. Most of these volunteers will come from local athletics clubs and other community groups. If you or your group are interested in volunteering please contact

Pace Groups
We are pleased to announce that the Newcastle Runners will provide THREE pace groups for any runners to join in in order to reach their target times. These runners will be well identified at the start and will wear a tall flag. The pace groups are
1. 4:00 min per km pace = sub 60:00  (this group will be start with WAVE 1)
2. 4:30 min per km pace = sub 1:07:30 (this group will start with WAVE 2)
3. 5:00 min per km pace = sub 1:15:00 (this group will start with WAVE 3)

Should you want to run with one of the pace groups you will need to ensure that you start in the SAME WAVE as your chosen pace group.



Entry Fees

Standard: $40 (closes 5:00pm Friday 2nd Oct EXTENDED UNTIL MIDNIGHT 5TH OCTOBER!)
Late: $50 (closes 5:00pm Thursday 15th Oct)
On the day: $50 (from 6:30am on race morning)

Manual entries will cost $50 and can be lodged at the Event Registration (times to be confirmed) and on race morning from 6:30am.

Late Entry ($50)
1st October – 18th October
While you register you will be asked if you would like to purchase a technical running t-shirt/singlet for $15 and/or return bus ticket for $10.
After you register you will be sent a confirmation email and will receive updates leading into race day.

Car parking and the Shuttle Bus
Car parking is available at the start precinct at St Pius X High School. Cars may be left here until 12:00pm. Kotara Westfield is also withing walking distance of the start line situated off Park Ave and Northcott Drive. A shuttle bus service will run every 30 minutes from the finish line back to Westfield Kotara and St Pius X. Purchase your bus ticket when you register OR if your did not purchase your ticket initially press the link below to be taken to the online shop to purchase a ticket.

Participant Agreement

WARNING: This agreement affects your rights. This waiver must be read by all entrants and the appropriate check box ticked when you enter online.
For competitors under 18, a parent or guardian must read and accept it on their behalf.

I agree to compete in this event on the following basis:
1. I acknowledge that competitive running or walking involves the real risk of serious injury or even death from various causes including overexertion, equipment failure, dehydration, accidents with other competitors, spectators or road users, and course or weather conditions to name a few.
2. I understand that I should not compete in this event unless I have trained appropriately and a medical practitioner has verified my physical condition.
3. By competing, I accept all risks necessarily flowing from my participation that could result in loss of life or permanent injury. Accordingly, I release all people associated with the conduct of the event from, and will indemnify them against, all liability (including liability for their negligence) for all injury, loss or damage (including loss of life and personal injury) arising out of or connected with my participation in this event. For clarification, the people released include event organisers, promoters, sponsors, managers including but not limited to ; Athletics NSW Ltd, Humphreys Events Pty Ltd; Police Officers; Newcastle City Council; Lake Macquarie Council, Fernleight Track Committee , and all of their respective directors, officers, employees, agents, contractors and volunteers including event medical and paramedical personnel. This release and indemnity continues forever and binds my heirs, executors, personal representatives and assigns.
4. I consent to receiving any medical treatment that event organisers think desirable during or after the event.
5. I consent to event organisers using my name, image and likeness, before during or after the event, for event promotional broadcasting or reporting purposes in any media.
6. I understand that compulsory insurance cover affected for participants in this event may not cover me for all injury, loss or damage sustained by me.
7. Safety precautions undertaken by organisers (such as course supervision, race safety briefings) are a service to me and other competitors but are not a guarantee of safety.
8. I am fully responsible for the security of my personal possessions at the event.
9. My registration is not transferable to other people. If I am unable to compete, or if the event is cancelled, my registration fee is non-refundable.
10. I will notify you regarding details of any medical or physical conditions from which I suffer that might affect my performance or be relevant if medical treatment is needed.
11. I agree to abide by all race rules and directions issued by the event organiser.
12. I certify that I am 18 years of age or older and I have read this document and fully understand it.
13. I acknowledge this waiver and release binds my heirs, successors, executors and administrators.
14. I understand that an electronic transponder will be used for timing all competitors in the event and this will entail wearing the device on a loan basis. I undertake to return the ‘transponder loaned to me as a competitor and will pay the organisers the amount of AUD $50 (including GST) if I fail to return the transponder at the conclusion of the event/race.I understand that finishing any part of the event without the transponder will result in no split times and/or an official finish result.
15. In taking part in the 2014 Fernleigh 15 I understand that I will become a Community Member of Athletics NSW.
16. I understand that I will receiving communications from Athletics NSW and H-Events about further competitions and member benefits and may unsubscribe to these communications.

Refund Policy
Offering refunds is difficult when organising sporting events. Organisers of the Fernleigh 15 will start to incur costs from the minute you enter and often book event services and purchase products months before the event. For this reason we do not offer a full refund once you have entered. However:
1. Up to and including 4 September 2015, if you must withdraw for any reason we will refund 70% of the entry fee
2. From 8 September to 4 October 2015 if you must withdraw for any reason we will refund 40% of the entry fee
3. From 5 October 2015 we do not refund for any reason



The Fernleigh 15 Coaching sessions are now up. The registration portal is below. Garry Wells who is the founder of Five30 Runners is the Level 2 Accredited Coach who will be taking the sessions.
Session 1 – Wed 9th September
Session 2 – Wed 23th September
Session 3 – Wed 7th October
Location: Newcastle Athletics Field, Smith St Newcastle West
Times: 5:30pm – 6:40pm
Cost: All THREE sessions – $30

Register for the coaching sessions here





General Training Tips

  1. ALWAYS stretch after a session and recover properly – eat some food including protein within 15 minutes after your workout.
  2. LISTEN to your body. If you are sore or tired, modify the workout or have a rest day.
  3. ALTER the training days to suit your week – swap the days in the program around but keep to the principle of ‘hard/easy’ – do not do 2 hard days in a row!
  4. MIX up the terrain you run on; use grass, gravel roads, bush trails and bitumen. Try and avoid concrete.

The Fernleigh Track is a multi-use rail trail near Belmont in New South Wales. The track was constructed in the way of the former Belmont railway line. The project is a joint venture between Newcastle City Council and City of Lake Macquarie.
The track extends from Adamstown to Belmont over an approximate distance of 15.5 km.
The former railway closed in December 1991. The first section between Adamstown and Burwood Road opened in 2003. Construction has continued in stages with the final section between Jewells and Belmont completed in March 2011.

For an estimated 6,000 years, the Fernleigh Track area was home to the indigenous Awabakal people. They lived amongst the rich natural environment and utilised the resources of the open and rocky coastline, swamp land and hilly forests.
Rail construction began in the late 1880’s, and the Adamstown to Belmont railway line was opened for traffic early in the 1890’s. It was used to transport coal from the mines in Lake Macquarie to the port of Newcastle and the Newcastle steel works.
In addition to coal haulage, a passenger service existed between Belmont and Newcastle. The trip took around one hour and was frequently used for weekend excursions from the city. When coal transportation began to decline, the service and maintenance of the line decreased.
In 1967, a switch from steam to diesel rail motors was made, before the scheduled passenger service was finally terminated in 1971. Throughout the 1980s, closures of coal mines along the line increased.
After the Lambton Colliery shut down operations in 1991, use of the line ceased completely.

The Transformation Process
Guided by the Fernleigh Track Committee the transformation from former rail corridor to treasured community asset began in 1994 after the joint purchase of the land by the Lake Macquarie and Newcastle City Councils.
In 1999, the development of a shared pathway was proposed. Funding from both Councils and the NSW State and Federal governments allowed construction to commence with a significant focus set on restoration and preservation. Different sections were completed in stages, spanning 2003 – 2011.


– 1880 – Rail line opened to Redhead
– December 1916 – Rail line extended to Belmont
– 12 October 1922 – Special train left Newcastle for the opening of “Soldiers’ Memorial Hall” at Kahibah
– January 1925 – Redhead Loop name changed to Fernleigh Loop
– 1967 – Last passenger steam train to Belmont
– 8 April 1971 – At 17:10 the last rail passenger train to Belmont via Kahibah left Newcastle Station
– 19 December 1991 – Rail line closed
– 2 February 2003 – Adamstown to Kahibah Station stage of the Fernleigh Track (cycleway) opened
– August 2004 – Dudley Junction to Whitebridge Station section of Fernleigh Track completed
– 7 May 2005 – Kahibah Station to Whitebridge Station section officially opened
– November 2009 – Whitebridge Station to Redhead Station section of Fernleigh Track completed
– November 2010 – Redhead Station to Jewels section of Fernleigh Track completed
– 12 March 2011 – Fernleigh Track fully completed
– 21 October 2012 – Inaugural Fernleigh15 running/walking event

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