Hobart (AUS, GP) 6Jan06



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Field Eventers Steal Limelight in Hobart

6 January 2006 | 10.36pm

Strong performances in the field, the surprise defeat of Jane Saville in the walk and the withdrawal of Craig Mottram highlighted the return of national series athletics to Tasmania tonight.

South Australia’s Brooke Billett was the star act at the Tasmania’s Forest Industries Graeme Briggs Memorial Meet in Hobart.

Billett, who is perhaps better known under her maiden name of Krueger, is refreshed after a year’s solid training away from the competition circuit and she dominated the women’s hammer with a new meet record performance of 69.55 metres, one of five A qualifying performances recorded by her during the evening. In fact a massive third round foul was her only blemish.

2002 Manchester bronze medallist, Karyne Di Marco, moved back into form with a B qualifier of 62.80m in second place, whilst Victorian Gabrielle Neighbour, also achieved the B mark with 60.64m in third.

Qualifying marks were also to the fore in the other field events contested with Rosanna Ditton recording a B standard in winning the women’s pole vault with 4.10m and Scott Martin again proving to be the king of the men’s discus with another victory, this time with a best of 60.65m, one of three A qualifiers from him tonight.

Benn Harradine (VIS) achieved the B standard once again with a throw of 58.30m.

The evening began with solid hit outs from many of Australia’s leading race walkers over 10,000 metres with Cheryl Webb (NSWIS) achieving a rare victory over Jane Saville in 46:46.74, whilst Darren Bown, normally a 50km man, took out the men’s event in 42:29.78.

Daniel Batman looked sharp in the opening men’s sprint of the night, streeting the field in 20.99, before unfortunately being disqualified for a false start in the 100 metres later in the evening.

From a local point of view, Tamika Johnston’s double in the women’s sprints in 11.95 and 24.27, indicated that she is on track to contend for a Commonwealth Games relay berth, but it was comeback queen, Donna MacFarlane’s victory in the 1500 metres which surprised most, including herself.

The Games A qualifier in the steeplechase, ran a five second personal best of 4.15.83 to beat Emma Rilen (NSWIS) and fellow chaser Victoria Mitchell (VIC). The Hobart journalist is making a stunning return to competition after the birth of her two children.

Werner Botha (QAS) and World Youth Championships bronze medallist Katherine Katsanevakis (VIS) won the men’s and women’s 800 metres, in 1:49.29 and 2:06.33, the latter being another World Junior qualifier for the young Victorian.

Jeanette Bowles (Vic) continued her good form to win the women’s triple jump with 13.07m, whilst Corey Tucker took the men’s 1500 metres in a relatively slow 3:44.78, given the pleasant evening conditions. Queensland Academy of Sports’ Charmaine Lucock equalled the world junior qualifying mark of 3.95m in the women’s vault.

But the best breakthrough probably came in the last event of the evening, with Geelong’s Louis Rowan recording a Games B qualifying performance of 13:37.39 in the men’s 5000 metres.

After a solid pace was set by former Australian marathon representative, Kim Gillard, Rowan placed himself well in the lead pack, before making a strong move with two laps to go. Needing a 60 second last lap to beat his target, he accelerated with the support of an enthusiastic crowd, to scape in by .61 of a second.

Zatopek 10000 metres winner, Brett Cartwright was a workmanlike second in 13:43.96 with Queensland Alastair Stevenson, shrugging off a week of illness, to take third in 13:47.49.

The only real disappointment for the 2000 strong crowd was Craig Mottram’s unfortunate withdrawal from the meet due to illness.

The World Championships 5000 metres bronze medallist initially withdrew from the meet on Friday morning but after feeling better decided to fly to Tasmania. However during his warm-up he again felt ill and was not able to compete.

Further information: Brian Roe (Athletics Tasmania) 0438 604 571

Any further information on Craig Mottram, KitKat? Others?

I was lucky enough to be in HObart, actually my home town.

Craig had a heavy dose of the flu, that he picked up at the Devonport pro carnival where he run 3.58 for the mile on grass. He was down to do the 1500m but indicated the cold prevent him running it so he elected to run 5000m. Craig spent some time up at the track and decided not to run. Personally he didn’t look 100% so it was probably wise.

As for the competition. The throws where national class competition. The sprints where little more than state class (even then it was missing 3 of the top state sprinters) with 2 mainland athletes.

You could try the athletics australia website or athletics tasmania website for more info and results.




Thanks, DMA!
I hope he recovers well! He’s needed in the scene…