Ross wins Burnie gift

Ross races into history books with Burnie win

Three-time national 100m champion Joshua Ross has confirmed he is in the best possible shape ahead of what promises to be a super summer of sprinting, taking out his second Burnie Gift (Monday).

Ross produced a scintillating run from scratch to become the first man in history to win two Burnie Gifts from the back mark after also capturing the event in 2004. When combined with his 2005 win at the Australia Post Stawell Gift off scratch, along with his 2003 Stawell victory, his Burnie win elevates him to a position as arguably the most successful sprinter in the history of professional athletics in Australia.

After reaching the final of the Queanbeyan and Mt Gambier gifts, Ross just shaded rising Tasmanian teenage star Sam Croswell (5.5m) in the 120m Burnie final, with both recording the super slick time of 12.04 seconds. Even considering the 3.5 metres per second tailwind, the time for Ross is fast – equating to just outside 10.00 for 100m.

Ross collected the $10,000 winners cheque after the photo finish revealed his chest hit the line a fraction ahead of Crosswell.

The early season from has Ross well placed to take on Patrick Johnson, Ambrose Ezenwa, Matt Shirvington, Daniel Batman and Adam Miller during what promises to be a series of entertaining encounters over the summer. Last season Shirvington, Johnson, Batman and Miller traded victories before Ross surprised everyone by claiming his third national title. The summer of sprinting begins with the National Series meeting in Perth this Saturday, before the Telstra A-Series kicks off in Canberra on 27 January.

Despite winning his third consecutive national title last year and running his second fastest time ever (10.23) in the second round of the Commonwealth Games, Ross was disappointed not to make the final of the Games after a poor semi-final run. He strained his hamstring in the heats of the relay, ending a somewhat lacklustre season compared to his meteoric rise over the past two years.

However a winter spent preparing at home rather than a trip to Europe for competition, a change of environment following a move from the NSW’s Central Coast to Sydney, along with a change of coach from Tony Fairweather to Sydney-based Emil Rizk appears to have the Athens Olympian back on track.

The win yesterday offers the possibility for Ross to re-launch his career where it started – in Perth - at Saturday’s Drug Free Track and Field Classic at Perry Lakes.

Despite winning the 2003 Stawell Gift it was his win in Burnie off scratch in 2004 that began his journey to the top of Australian sprinting. Having seen the run in Burnie, Australian athletics official Brian Roe pestered Athletics Australia to allow Ross to compete in Perth where he surprised by finishing third in the final clocking 10.37. Six weeks later he won the national title and was selected to run the 100m in Athens where he equaled his personal best in the heat and lowered it to 10.22 in the second round.

Ross set his current personal best of 10.12 in Perth in 2005 and considering Patrick Johnson’s 2003 exploits, running 9.90 (+5.7 m/s) in the heats before a blistering 9.88 (+3.6) in the final, it is easy to see why all the top echelon of Australia’s sprinters will converge on Perry Lakes this Saturday in search of the World Championships A qualifying time of 10.21.

Crosswell, the son of Victorian Football League legend Brent, has had a week to remember, running four 400 metres, three 200’s and six 120’s in seven days, winning three finals out of five, including a coveted 200m and 400m double in Devonport.

It is a rapid rise for an athlete who 18 months ago was a complete unknown in running circles and more likely to pursue a career in soccer. For his efforts over the Christmas carnival season he has pocketed $7100 in prizemoney.

In other events in Burnie, steeplechaser Donna MacFarlane demonstrated why she is ranked in the top ten in the world in her event, leaving the otherwise all male field in the Tasmanian 1600 metres handicap well behind in her wake.

Despite being pulled 10 metres to a mark of 190m following her second place in the equivalent race at Latrobe two weeks earlier, MacFarlane never looked threatened. Her time of 3:59.18 was more than nine seconds quicker than she had run at Latrobe, in arguably less favourable conditions.

The 2007 domestic season kicks off this Saturday in Perth with the Drug Free Track and Field Classic at Perry Lakes with further information available at

Change of coach could be a bit of a Rizk…

Kitkat, could you explain the rule for handicap races, do they run the whole 120m ? I red that no sprinter has ever run the entire 120m to win the event. :confused:

In Short they doctor there times and races all season long to get a better mark as the slower runners move to the front of the field from the back mark of 120m and then when they have a high enough handicap so they feel they can win they all of a sudden run there best times. :eek:

a slow guy will run 105m, a fast guy 120m and anywhere inbetween. The gun go off, and over the course of the race, they should, based on previous times, all cross the line at exactly the same time, and should be a dead heat for 1st.

Not going this year, my understanding is Josh was off scratch and the guy who cam second was off 5.5m

Therefore Josh (1st) run 120m and Sam Crosswell (2nd) run 114.5m

ok thanks. As for 100m conversion, the last 20m for a 12.04 time should be around 1.90-1.95, which gives 10.10-10.15 for the estimated 100m time. However, the race is done on the grass, but i don’t know if there are starting blocks, reaction time device, etc…

also the front foot is on the line not the hand

That’s what I think PJ was asking about first up. So if the guy off “scratch” sets his blocks up on the 120m line, his first step will be well inside the 120m racing zone.

If that constitutes a true 120m distance, then when the rest of the sport uses a hands-behind-the-line start setup, we are actually running more than 100m.

What would the men’s WR for 100m be if Powell used the “Gift” runner type of setup? 9.68?