Whangārei's Harry Linford and Maria Akkeson continued their great Sport Northland Run/Walk Series form with respective victories in Dargaville.

Perfect conditions greeted the large field of 580 competitors at the start of the Dargaville Veterinary Centre Run/Walk.

The event started and finished in the heart of Dargaville on Victoria Street. Competitors could pick from either a 10.5km or a 5km run/walk through the main streets and along and over the Northern Wairoa Bridge.

Competitors that opted for the 10.5km course took in a beautiful view of the town as they passed up and around the Dargaville Museum.


Linford was in top form once again as he held a comfortable lead throughout the 10.5km course, eventually taking out the win in 37m 05s.

The time was more than a minute faster than Wellsford's Louis Young, who was second in 38:33.

Linford and Young have consistently shown they're the two to beat and Dargaville was no different.

Whangārei's Tim Goodwin, who also ran strongly, completed the podium in 41:01.

In the women's division, Akkeson was pushed the whole way by Janice Powell in a competitive field.

Akkeson proved too quick though, pacing well to finish in 45:16, 25 seconds ahead of Powell.

Chubby Hale was not too far off the pace either, ending third in 46:17.

The 5km event saw many promising young athletes to the fore.


Elliot Ruffell of Whangārei outclassed local runners to take out the 5km in 20.56.

Dargaville's Angus Bradley and Luke Crichton both competed well to finish inside the top three.

Hannah Ewinson (Dargaville) easily won the women's division in 27.12 with Helen Jager and Gabrielle Thompson, both from Whangarei, the closest behind.

The win cements Akkeson's spot at the top of the leaderboard.

With Linford missing the first two events in the series, his win at Dargaville closes the gap on Tim Goodwin and Louis Young at the top of the men's section with only one point separating each of them.