By KEITH PUARIA
TRUKAI’s Olympic Day Fun Run 2010 hit the ground running, after the sale of 56,600 shirts valued at K566,000 kicking off proceedings in both Lae and Port Moresby auctions last week.
Both bids were also given some star appeal, with the presence of NRL’s North Queensland Cowboys Steve Southern, Michael Bani and club chief executive officer Peter Parr.
The Cowboys also contributed to the drive with the auctioning of club memorabilia, amongst them, a special training shirt belonging to star halfback Jonathan Thurston.
The auction last Thursday at the Royal Papua Yacht Club saw the capital’s corporate sector turn up to drive fundraising efforts of the PNG Sports Federation and Olympic Committee, in partnership with Trukai.
The night raised a total of K416,000, marginally lower than the previous years, nevertheless the auction was at its usual bidding best, with a little ushering from auctioneers Jim Robbins and Richard Sapias.
National Gaming Control Board (NGCB) once again topped the bidding with a total of 6,200 shirts to the value of K62,000 followed by UMW Niugini’s 3,400 shirts at K34,000.
The Institute of Business Studies ran third with K32,000, Telikom K31,000 and Peddle Thorpe Architects K24,000, making up the top five bidders.
More than 30 schools in Port Moresby were part of the bid on the night, with the highest bids going for St Joseph’s International School and Caritas, 1,300 shirts each, Cheshire Home 1,000 shirts, St Michael’s Elementary in Hanuabada 1,200 shirts, and Don Bosco Technical School 1,100 shirts.
As part of the night, raffle draws also gave bidders a chance to win, with prizes courtesy of Air Niugini, Courts and Coral Sea Hotels.
The night also marked the final bid for long time Trukai managing director Phil Franklin, who will leave at the end of this year.
In Lae’s auction last Wednesday night, total shirts sold at the bid dropped massively to 15,000, for a total of K150,000, from last year’s 27,950 shirts.
Amalpack was again as the highest bidder with a total 3,400 shirts, followed by Consort 1,700 shirts and Ramu-Agris 1,000.
Also present on the night were PNGSFOC secretary-general Sir John Dawanincura and senior vice-president Mel Donald.
The Fun Run concept in its 27th year running, Trukai took over as major sponsor only 11 years ago.