Wellington Harrier Athletic Club is one of the oldest harrier and sporting clubs in New Zealand. Founded in 1903, the first pack run set off from the Basin Reserve on the afternoon of Saturday 4 April, with a second and main opening run on the afternoon of Saturday 18 April. In the early years most of the club’s activities revolved around a weekly pack run held each Saturday. The location of the start varied week to week between various church halls and private homes around the district, a practice that still continues today from our clubrooms located on Mt. Victoria in the heart of Wellington.
The first Wellington Harriers Cross Country Championship was held in 1905. The race was held over five miles at the local Island Bay Racecourse with eleven starters. Wellington Harriers first came to prominence at the 1909 NZAAA National Cross Country held in Timaru finishing second in the club race behind Caversham. Since then Wellington Harriers has become widely recognised both Nationally and Locally as being one of New Zealand’s most successful harrier clubs. In 1984, Wellington Harriers Senior Men secured their first off two National Road Relay titles during the decade. A decade which included a host of National medals and New Zealand Representative’s such as the house hold names of Froude, McCallum and Drake.
Caption: A young Dallas McCallum
The 1990’s saw the rise of Wellington Harrier’s as a stable for producing some of New Zealand’s best female athletes. In particluar Barbara Moore (Bronze 1990 CWG 10,000m), Hare, O’Rourke and Humphries leading the charge. On the 22nd March 1997 it was unanimously agreed that Wellington Harriers would merge with the local Wellington Track and Field Club (WTFC) to form Wellington Harrier Athletic Club (WHAC). Since the formation of WHAC the club’s involvement in he track and field scene has continued to grow, to the point where we may now be considered the premier track and field club in the region, among the top T&F clubs in the country. WHAC has also developed a strong Children’s athletic’s programme which usually sees over 100 children at club days.
In 2003, WHAC celebrated 100 years of running and is proud to be one of New Zealand’s longest standing Harrier and Athletic Clubs. The club continues to grow with over four hundred members from children through to masters.