The Pak'nSave Cooks Classic on Saturday evening has drawn record entries and the enhanced Oceania Permit status of the meeting has helped produce some mouth-watering fields.
On the iconic Cooks Gardens track, which has seen 65 sub-4 minute miles, the return of the NZ Mile Championship after 52 years has enticed an outstanding field.
There is every chance of adding a number of athletes to the Cools Gardens sub 4 club and with it the award of the special cap.
The leading runners are in great form as demonstrated in an outstanding New Zealand 3000 metres Championships at the Potts Classic last weekend when the leading six runners all ran under 8 minutes.
All six are in the field on Saturday including former Whanganui Collegiate student George Beamish, who ranked second on the New Zealand rankings in 2020 following his 3:56.90 at the last Millrose Games in New York.
Beamish last ran at Cooks Gardens as a member of the winning Collegiate 4 x 400 team at New Zealand Schools in 2014.
Beamish would love to be the first Whanganui athlete on the Cooks Gardens sub 4-minute roll of honour on the eve of his return to the US.
His bronze medal at Hastings at the weekend demonstrates he is in good form.
A number of Stadium records are under threat.
Lauren Bruce threw over 72 metres in the hammer at the weekend which means that not only is Bronwyn Eagles (Australia) Cooks record is under threat but also her own New Zealand record.
Both Cooks shot records are under threat with Maddison Wesche looking likely to break Dame Valerie Adams mark and Jacko Gill looking at a highly achievable 20.04 metres in the men's event while Tori Peeters has every chance of eclipsing Kirsten Smith's long standing javelin record.
The meeting has both the men's and women's New Zealand Championships on the programme with local interest in each. We can look forward to top sprinting over 100 metres, 200 metres and a stacked women's field in the 400 metres, which also has attracted a large entry competing in additional heats chasing the timed handicap award in which the elite are included.
The main programme starts at 7pm with a short pre-meet at 6pm. Further details will appear on Alec McNab's weekly Athletic Insight column.