Athletics NSW – David Tarbotton – 3 February 2023
Sydney’s Claudia Meaker, aged just 15 years, will make history when she lines up at the start of the under-20 race at the World Athletics Cross Country Championships in Bathurst.
At just 15 years and 109 days, she becomes the youngest ever Australian to compete in the under-20 events (men or women) at the World Cross Country Championships, surpassing Suzy Walsham who was 15 years and 115 days in 1989. [However, note Sharon Dalton was a day younger (15y 108d) when she competed in the senior event at the 1983 WXC.] Meaker is also the youngest Aussie to compete in any under-20 world championship for Australia for over a decade.
Meaker secured selection in the Australian team after placing sixth in the Australian trial in January. Her selection far exceeded any expectation of selection going into the trial.
“My goal going into the WXC trial was to not blow up – it was the longest distance I have raced. I wanted to run an even paced race and just finish. I didn’t have any expectations as to how I would go, I really had no idea how I would place.”