WORLD marathon runner Nathan Hartigan won this morning's Run Ballarat 12-kilometre event in emphatic style.
Hartigan crossed the line at City Oval in 36 minutes, six seconds and was well clear of runner-up Ben Toomey.
Race ambassador Steve Moneghetti was third, then raced back to the start line in Sturt Street to launch the 6km run.
Hartigan said there was an extra buzz about racing in a popular hometown event.
"Ballarat turned on the weather today. It's perfect conditions," Hartigan said.
"It's such a well-publicised event that I think in the next five to 10 years Run Ballarat is going to be huge."
The event is a strong lead-in for Hartigan to next week's Melbourne Half-Marathon.
Georgia Liubinas, in town for this week's Australian University Games rowing championships, was the first-placed female in the 12km.
Kelli Baird was second and Eloise De Jong third.