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Speediest-Certified 5K road race on June 7

On the morning of Friday, June 7, Corsa launches its second Beat Your PB race for 2024, featuring two national athletes, Dillon Cassar and Andrew Grech.

In this 5K AIMS-certified race, starting at 7am from Ta’ Xbiex, participants are invited to record their official ‘personal best’ timing with Corsa.

Whether to set a motivational benchmark for individual achievement, record official timings or eligibility for official rankings in international 5KM races, including the Games of the Small States of Europe, runners can rely on the event’s accurate and consistent course.

The first Beat Your PB series held last March has enabled runners like Charles Cilia, who broke a national record in his age category, to officiate his timings in the distance race.

The Times of Malta spoke to Corsa’s Race Director, Matthew Pace and national athletes Cassar and Grech.

“At 0 overall elevation change, Beat Your PB’s 5KM route certifies it to be the fastest and flattest racecourse across Malta and Gozo,” said Race Director Pace.

“The course offers the perfect balance of challenge and speed, making it ideal for those looking to set a new personal best. Corsa’s ethos, inspired by the Latin adage ‘Mens sana in corpore sano’ (a healthy mind in a healthy body), underscores the importance of holistic well-being in pursuing athletic excellence.

“It’s not just about beating your personal best; it’s about embracing a journey of physical and mental growth.”

Dillon Cassar will be on the starting line of the Beat Your PB race on June 7.

Athletes Dillon Cassar, aged 27, and Andrew Grech, aged 45, shared their insights into the world of competitive running with the Times of Malta, offering valuable advice and inspiration to runners of all levels.

Since making his competitive debut in 2018, Cassar has established himself as one of the top long-distance runners in Malta.

He won several titles, including the Road Running League last year with his club Mellieħa AC, before marking his debut in the GSSE with an impressive bronze medal in the 10,000m race at last year’s edition.

With his father as his coach and mentor, he finds strength in the support of his family and the pursuit of excellence.

Andrew Grech will be competing in the Beat Your PB race on June 7.

“Running has transformed my life,” Cassar said.

“My dad, who is both my coach and my mentor, has always inspired me to become a better version of myself. Every race is a step towards personal growth and improvement.

“Every challenge and setback makes us stronger and more determined. My most significant achievements include winning the National Road Running Championship twice and earning a bronze medal for Team Malta at the GSSE.

“Each race has its own story, but winning a medal on home soil was the most rewarding.”

On the other hand, Andrew Grech has been running for 24 years and has established himself as one of the fastest long-distance runners on the island.

He has achieved impressive results, including victories in several local and overseas races and setting the half marathon national record with his club Evolve Endurance.

Grech’s journey began over two decades ago when a football injury led him to discover his passion for long-distance running. Since then, Grech has won Malta’s National Road Running League multiple times, never skipping a season and recording over a hundred first places.

“Running became my passion after a football injury,” Grech said.

“Since my first race in 2000, I’ve never looked back. The discipline and focus required for long-distance running have shaped my life in incredible ways.

“Injuries are part of the journey. Overcoming them requires patience and perseverance.

“One of my most memorable experiences was winning the Malta Full Marathon after a setback the previous year. That victory was a testament to what determination and resilience can do for you.”

Cassar and Grech, with an impressive average time of 15:17 for the 5K distance, will be joined by hundreds of runners on a fast, flat, and scenic route around Ta’ Xbiex and Sliema on June 7.

Both Cassar and Grech gave their training tips to interested runners for the race.

“A typical training week involves 80% easy running and 20% hard training,” Cassar said.

“It’s crucial to maintain a balance to avoid burnout and injury.”

On his part, Grech said: “I train daily, with one track session, a tempo session, and a long run. The rest are daily 15k sessions. It’s all about consistency and dedication.”

Turning his sights on the future, Cassar said: “My goals are always to help others and keep improving. There’s no limit to what we can achieve, and I’m always looking long-term.”

On his part, Grech is hopeful to compete at the Masters World Championships in Sydney.

“This year, I qualified for the Masters World Championships in Sydney. I hope to make it if finances permit. It’s a significant milestone in my running career, and I’m excited about the challenge,” Grech said.

As Cassar and Grech prepare for the race, their stories serve as a source of motivation for all running enthusiasts and aspiring athletes.

Their dedication, sacrifice, and commitment exemplify the timeless nature of running – a sport where personal growth and achievement know no age.

Race Day

Corsa’s Beat Your PB series on June 7 is a testament to the organisation’s commitment to inclusivity and community.

Held on the morning of a public holiday, the 5KM AIMS-certified race will be joined by three other races for children categorised by age.

Race Line up

5KM AIMS certified Race for all adults aged 16 and over at 07:00

2KM race for children aged 13-16 at 08:00

1KM run for children aged 7-12 at 08:15

500-meter fun run for children aged 5 and over at 08:30

The events feature timing technology with RFID chips for precise timing, ensuring fair competition and accurate personal best results. A diverse community of runners, spanning motivated individuals, couples, clubs, corporate teams, families, children, and international athletes, embodies resilience, progress, and the collective celebration of achievements.

“Our races are not just about competition; they are about community and personal growth. We aim to create an environment where every participant feels celebrated and inspired regardless of age or ability,” Matthew Pace said.

As race day approaches, runners are urged to register to secure their spot on the starting line. Participants can register for the via CORSA’s Facebook events pages or the Active platform.

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