The Queensland Heat have drawn the first blood at the Australian All Schools Championships in Adelaide (SA) this evening, with Conor McLaughlin (Qld) taking home the maiden gold medal of the event in the boy’s under 16 hammer throw.
Hurling a new personal best throw of 61.60m, McLaughlin shared the dais with James Joycey (Vic, second, 60.19m) and Nick Price (NSW, third, 56.62m) to launch three bumper days of competition by the nation’s best under 14, 16 and 18 aged athletes.
Excitement on the track was headlined by Louis Stenmark (NSW), who made light work of the field in his heat of the boy’s under 18 400m to advance fastest to the final tomorrow with a time of 48.71.
Looking to secure his second qualifier for the 2015 IAAF World Youth Championships in Cali (COL) in the round-of-eight, the Sydney-based school boy was one of many highlights at the GPS Athletics Championships in May when he won a dominant gold before attending the Athletics Australia’s Under 17 Development Squad camp in Canberra (ACT) weeks later.
Wes Mooka (Qld) won the second heat to advance as the next fastest in a time of 49.01, with Liam Procaccino (Vic, 49.05) and Teri Fragiadakis (NSW, 49.25) on his heels.
In the girl’s race, Athletics Australia Under 17 Development Squad athlete Sarah Billings (Vic) was the most impressive. Her time of 56.10 ensures that she will start as the pre-race favourite for the final tomorrow.
Endurance events on day one were headlined by the girl’s and boy’s under 18 2000m steeplechase.
Winning the girl’s event in a time of 6:46.04 was Caitlin McQuilkin (Qld) in a time of 6:46.04 from the IAAF World Youth Championships eligible Beth Croft (NSW, second, 6:46.66), while the boy’s race saw Nathan Percy cross the line first in 5:54.89.
The opening session also boasted para-athletics events at the Australian All Schools Championships for the first time, and it was Kyra Domrow (Qld) who shone in the girls under 18 para-athletics shot put. A visually impaired athlete, Domrow threw a national record of 9.64m to win gold from Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games representative Rae Anderson (NSW, second, 8.17m).
The boy’s event was won by Daniel Jennings (NSW), who has cerebral palsy, with a personal best throw of 8.48m.
In other results on day one of the Australian All Schools Championships:
- An Australian representative at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games, Shemaiah James (Qld) was dominant in the boy’s under 18 triple jump. His best mark of 15.54m (w: -0.1) came in the third round
- Jayden Faleva’ai (Qld), who has an intellectual disability, won the boy’s under 16 para-athletics shot put with a throw of 9.76m from Kyle Robinson (NSW, second, 9.59m) and Jack Connors (NSW, third, 9.22m).
- Jacinta Fisher (NSW) stood atop the podium for the girl’s under 18 triple jump after winning gold with a leap of 12.53m (w: -0.2). The silver medal was won by Andrea Thompson (NSW, 12.21m) and the bronze by Nicole Maynard (Qld, 12.12m).
- Joshua Phillips (NSW) was victorious in the boy’s under 16 2000m steeplechase in 6:02.56, while Maxine Paholek (Vic) stopped the clock at 7:02.62 to take line honours in the girl’s event.
The Australian All Schools Championships will continue at the South Australia Athletics Stadium across the next two days, with the highly anticipated boy’s under 18 100m featuring Jack Hale (Tas), Rohan Browning (NSW) and Trae Williams (Qld) headlining competition tomorrow.
It is the first time since 2000 that the event has been held in Adelaide (SA) and more than 1000 athletes will be pitted against each other in under 14, under 16 and under 18 aged events in the race for coveted national crowns.
Importantly for the development of the sport, the championships will also feature para-athletics events for the first time. This continues Athletics Australia’s shift toward full integration of junior track and field after these events appeared on the timetable at the Australian Junior Athletics Championships in March.
You can join the conversation across the course of the championship by using the hashtag #SUMMERofATHS on both Twitter and Instagram. The best interactions will be shared across social media and on the Athletics Australia website.
For more information, including results, entry lists, technical information and a complete timetable, please follow this link to the event sub-site at athletics.com.au.