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October 9, 2002

Golden girl

From: Nowra South Coast Register, Australia
Oct. 9, 2002

NOWRA Athletics Club's Cristine Suffolk has done it again, picking up four gold medals at the 3rd Asia Pacific Masters Games and in the process broke a Games record.

Competing on the Gold Coast, Cristine won golds in the 800 metres, 1500m, 5000m and the 6km cross country event.

Suffolk, who is deaf, was brilliant in winning the 5000m in a new Asia Pacific Masters Games record.

She didn't just beat the record, she shattered it by an amazing 20 seconds, completing the course in 20 minutes and 29 seconds to break the record, which had stood for two years.

"I ran really well," she said.

"I couldn't believe it when I broke the record and by that much."

Suffolk also had to overcome a dramatic change in weather conditions to achieve success.

"It was very hot on the Gold Coast," she said.

"It was very different to what we have been experiencing in the Shoalhaven."

It's certainly been a big year for the 32-year-old who celebrated winning her 100th major medal just a week before her birthday in February.

This year alone she has won six gold, one silver and three bronze medals at major competitions.

To date she has won 108 medals, of which 58 are gold, 26 silver and 24 bronze.

To mark an incredible career Cristine was also made a life member of the Nowra Club at its annual presentation evening earlier this year.

Not one to rest on her laurels, as well as competing each Thursday evening at the Nowra Club's track and field events, Cristine is also setting herself for next year's Trans Tasman Masters Games in Newcastle, the Australian Masters Athletics Championships in Perth and the 9th Australian Masters Games in Canberra.

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