by Gerard Walsh
DAN Symonds has been running 130-160km a week in preparation for his 8th Daily News Pentath-run.
He first competed as a Year 10 student at Warwick State High School and competed in four successive Pentath-run.
He then had a break from competition but this weekend's event will now be his fourth in succession.
Symonds was placed in 2014, won the 2015 Pentath-run and was second last year.
Last year's winner Liam Woollett has made an Australian team to compete at world championships in his age group so won't run.
For the second year in succession, Symonds will have to keep an eye on two close mates, Peter Bracken and Aidan Hobbs.
Both have competed in the past but have trained a lot harder this year.
"Peter and Aidan are mainly more short-distance athletes but have been training for the Gold Coast Marathon in the first weekend of July.
Symonds has a marathon PB of two hours, 51 minutes, and hopes to break 2:40 one day.
"My immediate goal is a 50km run at the Gold Coast on June 11. This weekend will be a good build up before I start to taper for the June race.”
Symonds isn't a betting man but if he was would put his money on Kerri Hodge to win the women's event.
"I train with Aidan and Kerri as we are all sponsored by Intraining,” he said.
"Kerri has done a lot of training in the past year for a marathon and plans to compete in the Australian Masters in Darwin. She has been smashing personal bests left, right and centre in the past six months.”
He said it was great to see record numbers again.
"I am a big fan of the Pentath-run and want to see it grow,” he said.
"It is good to get back to Warwick two weekends a year, the Pentath and rodeo. Both are fun.”
Run director Neil Burtenshaw said all events had been brought forward 30 minutes.
"The Queensland Police Service and Transport Main Roads have requested organisers to arrange additional traffic controls and marshals for the half-marathon and Nike Robina Ascent from Killarney to Queen Mary Falls.
"Speed limits are reduced to 60 kilometres an hour on roads on the route during the Pentath-run,” he said.