Dominant display from Robertson at NZ championships
Jake Robertson gave a dominant front-running display to win his first New Zealand track title at the Les Mills NZ Track and Field championships in Wellington. Representing Waikato BoP, the 25 year old Kenyan based athlete lead from the start of the race in very blustery conditions at Wellington’s Newtown Park on Friday afternoon. Encouraging other runners to follow his pace he ran the 12 and a half lap race in a modest 14:03.71,well outside his best of 13:15 set in Europe last year.
The time was not important in the difficult conditions for the former Hamilton athlete and his smile and celebration at the finish hinted at his pleasure at winning the title. Malcolm Hicks from Auckland the defending champion finished second in 14:17.77, while Robertson teammate and two-times New Zealand 10,000 champion Aaron Pulford came home third in14:27.21.
Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Zane Robertson was a late withdrawal from the race after injuring a calf on a training run the day before.
Kodi Harman won the coveted senior men’s 100m title in a windy 10.47. The Tauranga athlete, representing Waikato BoP, cleared out early in the race and won going away from the field with James Mortimer (Auckland) 10.62 and Alex Jordan (Wellington) 10.65 filling the minor placings.
The 20 year old Harman had previously won junior and youth titles and was thrilled to bag his first senior title.
Kelsey Berryman won the women’s 100m after the disqualification of co-favourite Rochelle Coster for a false start. Like the men’s 100m winner, it was the first senior title for the Canterbury 23 year old, having previously won six junior titles for sprinting and hurdling. In one of the few legal wind reading of the day, the winning time of 11.88 was just 0.10 outside Berryman’s best.
The minor placings were filled by Molly Florence on 12.06 and Livvy Wilson (12.30).
Cameron French (Waikato BoP), in one of the most impressive performances of the day, defended his 400m hurdles title, recording 50.28, a classy performance in the wind and wet of Newtown Park.
Mackenzie Keenan (Canterbury) beat defending champion Zoe Ballantyne in the women’s hurdles with a time of 61.53.
Camille Buscomb won the women’s 5000m in 16:20.02 defending the title she won on the same track 12 months earlier and running some 12 seconds faster in the process.
Hamish Kerr was a surprise winner in the men’s high jump, clearing a big personal best of 2.13 to defeat seven times champion Billy Crayford on 2.09. Earlier in the season, the Auckland 18 year old won the New Zealand Secondary Schools title and had previously cleared 2.08.
Portia Bing in the first event of a four at these championships won the long jump title with a jump of 6.23, beating defending champion Mariah Ririnui on 6.12.
Marshall Hall (Southland) easily retained his discus title, throwing a season best 57.43 in tricky, windy and wet conditions, while Alex Parkinson had a personal best of 52.92 in second place.
Nicole Bradley (Auckland) came out on top in a close women’s hammer competition, throwing 52.48 to win from young Canterbury thrower Lauren Bruce by just over a metre and another metre back to Montaya Wharehinga.
Courtney Ruske (Canterbury) 13:45.72 and Mike Parker (Auckland ) 14:43.95 were the winners in the 3000m walk championships.
100m: Kodi Harman (WaikBoP) 10.47s 1, James Mortimer (Akld) 10.62s 2, Alex Jordan (Wgtn) 10.65s 3.
5000m: Jake Robertson (WaikBoP) 14m 3.71s 1, Malcolm Hicks (Akld) 14m 17.77s 2, Aaron Pulford (WaikBoP) 14m 27.21s 3.
400m Hurdles: Cameron French (WaikBoP) 50.28 1, Campbell Wu (Akld) 53.51 2, Phil Simms (WaikBoP) 53.81 3
3000m race walk: Mike Parker (Akld) 14:43.95 1 Sean Lake (Well Scot) 17:23.55 2
Discus throw: Marshall Hall (Sthld) 57.43 1, Alexander Parkinson(Akld) 52.92 2, Dale Pritchard 49.38 3
High jump: Hamish Kerr (Manwtu/Wang) 2.13m 1, William Crayford (Wgtn) 2.09m 2, Matt Nicholls (WaikBoP) 2.05m 3.
100m: Kelsey Berryman (Cant) 11.88s 1, Molly Florence (WaikBoP) 12.06s 2, Livvy Wilson (Akld) 12.30s 3.
5000m: Camille Buscombe (WaikBoP) 16m 20.02s 1, Lydia O’Donnell (Akld) 16m 46.47s 2, Margot Gibson (Cant) 17m 40.43s
3000 Metre race walk: Courtney Rusk 13:45.72 1, Roseanne Robinson 14:.3. 76 2
400m hurdles: MacKenzie Keenan (Cant) 61.53 1, Zoe Ballantyne (Akld) 63.75 2
Hammer throw: Nicole Bradley (Akld) 52.48 1, Lauren Bruce (Cant) 51.37 2, Montaya Wharehinga (Wgtn) 50.41 3.
Long jump: Portia Bing (Akld) 6.23m 1, Mariah Ririnui (WaikBoP) 6.12m 2, Emma Hopcroft (Sthld) 5.64m 3.