9 May 2011
KAWASAKI MEET: Relay qualifies for Daegu and Kaan places
Six NSW athletes were in action yesterday at the IAAF World Challenge meet held in Kawasaki Japan.
After a few near misses this summer, the women’s 4x100m relay team finally achieved the qualifying time of 44.00 seconds for the IAAF World Championships. The team which included NSW’s Laura Whaler (Macquaire Hunter) will almost definitely be added to the World Championships team. They clocked a time of 43.69 - the 17th fastest on the Australian all-time list and the second fastest in the last 10 years.
National champion, James Kaan (Hills), placed an excellent second in the 800m clocking 1:47.25, behind Masato Yokota’s winning time of 1:46.87.
“I’m really happy with my run today,” said Kaan.
“Race went almost as I planned, similar to nationals. I got myself in a good position and kicked with 150 to go. Unfortunately didn’t have enough when the Japanese guy came back at me in the final 50. It's been a long and successful season and this just helping me move forward.”
Kaan’s preparation for the race had not been ideal.
“Had a weird couple of weeks since nationals with a few niggles in my calfs and knees, but all clear now. It was good to get a fast hit out before Daegu next Thursday where I'll look to get on the fast pace and hopefully run a pb.”
James Gurr (UTS Norths) placed fourth in the race in 1:48.54.
The men’s 4x100m team also raced in Kawasaki placing fifth in a time of 39.53. Two NSW athletes Anthony Alozie (Sutherland) and Liam Gander (Macquarie Hunter) combined with Matt Davies (Qld) and Aaron Rouge-Serret (Vic) for the race.
“We did our best running 39.5,” said Alozie. “It wasn't good enough but what can we do, we will do our best next time.”
The team was missing the national bronze medallist Issac Ntimoah (Sutherland) who did not run due to a tight muscle.
Also competing was Commonwealth Games 4x400m relay gold medallist, Kevin Moore (Mingara), who placed seventh in the 200m in a time of 21.77.
David Tarbotton and Ron Bendall for Athletics NSW
Image: Laura Whaler and ACT’s Mel Breen (image courtesy of David Tarbotton)