21-year-old Rose Davies has moved to seventh on the Australian all-time list in taking out the Zatopek:10 at Hagenauer Reserve, Box Hill.
After the early pace was set by pacemakers and then picked up by defending champion Genevieve Gregson, it was Davies and South Australia’s Isobel Batt-Doyle who were prominent in the closing stages of the race.
Davies sped to a sub-3 minute final kilometre to stop the clock at 31:39.97. Batt-Doyle took second in 31:43.26, while Canadian Andrea Seccafien was third in 31:45.95. Gregson was the third Australian home, in 32:06.32, a new personal best.
In the men’s race, Brett Robinson notched up his second Zatopek victory, with a controlled 28:00.25 run to beat training partner Jack Rayner by 13 seconds (28:13.42).
The bronze medal was a race of experience vs youth, with David McNeill (28:16.86) pulling away from Ed Goddard (28:23.94) in the closing stages of the race after the pair had run neck-and-neck throughout the race.
A high calibre women’s 1500m saw Linden Hall narrowly miss the Olympic entry standard of 4:04.20, clocking an impressive 4:04.33. Rio Olympian Jenny Blundell was second in 4:07.71, holding off Keely Small, who shattered her personal best with a run of 4:07.89.
In the men’s metric mile, Jordan Williamsz got the better of training partner Ryan Gregson as both broke 3:40 in their first outing for the season (3:39.59 and 3:39.85 respectively). In sixth, Jarryd Clifford broke the T12 world record for the third time this season, running 3:42.97.
The junior 3000m races – extended to be U21 races due to the deferral of the meet from its usual December timeslot in the Australian athletics calendar – were tactical affairs with fast finishes. Abbey Caldwell dominated the women’s race with a 2:14 final 800m to clock 9:22.35 from Sarah Schiffmann (9:35.27) and Lucinda Rourke (9:38.67).
In the men’s race it was Adam Spencer who took line honours in 8:18.30 from Drew Fryer (8:21.27) and Samuel Clifford (8:22.54).
Evergreen Jeff Riseley showed his tactical prowess in difficult wind conditions, biding his time to kick to victory in the 800m in 1:48.11 after Jack Lunn set the race’s tempo. Lunn tired down the straight to finish third in 1:49.08, being overtaken by Lachlan Raper (1:49.07).
The women’s 800m was taken out by national record holder Catriona Bisset in 2:02.75.
The 400m hurdles races were taken out by Sara Klein (57.03) and Conor Fry (51.32), who set a new personal best in a close race with Fraser Symons (51.36).
The highlight in the field was a 7.96m (+1.0) long jump from Darcy Roper.