In round 4 Western Athletics were represented at at least 3 different venues with photos coming in from Ringwood, Doncaster and Geelong athletics tracks.
Thank you to Athletics Australia for the following article. Source: http://athletics.com.au/News/rayner-wins-in-augural-commonwealth-half
Jack Rayner has written his name into history with a win in the inaugural Commonwealth Half Marathon Championships held in Cardiff last evening.
We were lucky with the weather and in the end we had only a few drops of rain, with the worst of the wind and hail well after the racing was done and dusted. We had some great results and our open men finished the season on a very powerful note - the best team results for the season. With a little help from the juniors our open women fielded three teams and runs from our U18 men and U16 women teams saw them secure second place in the ladders for the season.
Thanks To all those who spotted and recorded for our teams and for our three AV helpers Kylee Marsh, Ben Mudie and Sharon Rankin.
With near perfect conditions for the half marathon, cool conditions, a light breeze and the sun making the occasional appearance, we had a bumper turn-out from our open men’s team. For the juniors the numbers were down a little with the National XC only the week before. Highlights for the round were Nardine Bainbridge’s best ever placing in the XCR finishing 4th, which should place her in the top ten for the overall season, Callum Drake breaking 70 minutes in his debut half marathon and Stephanie Thomas’s 3rd Western athletics record for the year in the 40+ category and her successful defence of the XCR Half Marathon title.
Thanks to all our AV helpers, Colin Drake, Peter Cashin, Brenda Cashin and Lori Glover and to Tania Shanahan for the photos.
Conditions were on the good side for Ballarat but the westerly breeze made the return part of the course an effort. We took a hit in the open divisions this week with only two men’s teams (down 7 athletes) and one team in the open women. Despite the low numbers we still had strong Premier Men’s and Women’s teams with the continuing of the see-sawing 3rd and 4th place between the two - men finishing 3rd and the women 4th. Numbers were also down with our juniors but so were other clubs and with this our U20s won the team competition. A couple of individual highlights for this round was Nardine Bainbridge’s best ever XCR placing, with a 5th place in the open women’s competition and Stephanie Thomas breaking another record, the women’s 40+ 15km road race record, in a time of 60 minutes and 57 seconds.
Round 6 also doubled as the 10km Road State Championship and this year AV threw in a $2500 price for a the winner in sub 29 minutes for the men and sub 32 for the women. With Jack Rayner in the best form of his career so far, off the back of wins at Launceston, Bundoora and the Gold Coast half marathon, the money was on Jack for the win and he did not disappoint. Despite the northerly wind picking up during the race Jack set the pace and in the last 2 km made a break from the last of his rivals to take the win, and the cash, in a time of 28 minutes and 52 seconds. Along with all the other firsts, Jack is now Western athletics’ first state road 10km champion. In other highlights, our U16s team won putting them back on top of the ladder with Mia White returning to the podium with a win in the U16 3km.
The weather played a huge part in the relays with AV truncating the races, with two laps per leg down to the single lap, 3.1km. This was good news for some but it also meant some juggling of open men’s teams with the danger of losing one of our best from the Premier team. It was with initiative and cool heads that the open men’s teams in the Div 3 and Div 6 were prepared to move the order around to accommodate for the missing athlete. Thanks Michael Masseni, Luke Hodgart, Adrian Jeffkins and spotters Peter Cashin and Tom Vernon. Thankfully, it was not necessary to change the teams around again with everyone making the race in time. Thanks to the support on the day from Brenda Cashin for money collections and all those who braved the chilly conditions to run or record for the teams – everyone put in a superb effort. Thanks also to our three AV helpers, Ben Mudie, Karen Sharp and Mechelle Lane who spotted and recorded for the U16 women’s teams.
Amy has been studying in the USA on an athletics scholarship at the West Virginia University since August 2013. In that time she has achieved a great deal both academically and athletically.
Amy dedicates her time with the Special Olympics, Ruby Memorial Hospital, local nursing homes, and in the summers, she helps coach and mentor at local youth cross country camps.
Her coach at WVU, Sean Cleary said, "Words alone cannot describe Amy's leadership in helping guide not only our track and cross country programs, but more so the overall student-athlete experience at WVU."
We can’t wait to see Amy when she comes home for Christmas and at the Falls Creek training camp.