Juniors likely to set athletics track alight

By Gary Caffell


The stage is set for an exciting North Island interprovincial age group track and field championships at the Colin Pugh Sports Bowl in Masterton tomorrow.

Numerous budding Olympians will be among the 180 athletes aged from 14 to 17 who will strut their stuff in a wide variety of events over a five-hour period, starting at 11am.

For those locals who fought so hard for so many years to construct Wairarapa's first all-weather track, this will be an ideal chance to demonstrate its worth.

The quality of the fields virtually guarantees fast times will be recorded throughout a track programme which will see competition over distances ranging from 100m to 1500m.

And the substantially improved arenas for field events should have exactly the same effect.

Adding to the incentive for competitors to make it on to the victory dias is that provincial pride will be at stake.

The 14 Wairarapa athletes involved are part of a Wellington line-up who lock horns with the likes of Auckland, North Harbour, Counties Manukau, Waikato-Bay of Plenty, Hawke's Bay-Gisborne, Manawatu-Wanganui and Taranaki.

Masterton-based coach Mark Harris is confident the Wairarapa contingent will do well although he concedes they will be up against formidable opposition.

"The calibre of athletes in these age groups is very high and you never quite know who will come out of the woodwork, nothing can be guaranteed."

Wairarapa athletes competing in the throws are Tim Girling-McLean, Emma Kruszona and Katie Smith, while contesting track or jump events will be Alex Howden, Sian Chapman, Dhruv Raman, Edward Hewitt, Tyler Griffiths, Lauren Balsillie, Finn Yeats, Alison Andrews-Paul, Tessa Laven, Daniel Childs and Toyah Churton.

Meanwhile, a small Wairarapa contingent made their presence felt at the Cooks Gardens Classic held at Wanganui on Wednesday. Results:

100m, Women heat one: Simone Small 12.82s 1. Women heat two: Sian Chapman 13.15s 7. Men heat one: Finn Yeats 11.58s 3, Dhruv Raman 12.23s 5. Men heat two: Alex Howden 11.21s 2.

400m, Women: Molly Creagh 1m 10.30s 6. Men: Dhruv Raman 54.68s7.

800m women: Stevie Paine 2m 19.82s 2.

1500m women: Alison Andrews-Paul 5m 11.34s 11, Stevie Paine 5m 18.32s 12.

2 X 100m relay, Women: Sian Chapman and Simone Small 24.96s 4. Men: Alex Howden and Finn Yeats 22.04s 5.

Shot put, Women: Katie Smith 12.45m 3. Men: Tom Quinn 10.73m 3.

Discus, Women: Katye Smith 28.88m 5. Junior men: Tom Quinn 42.50m 1.

- Wairarapa Times-Age

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