You couldn’t wipe the smile off Morgan Mitchell’s (52.22 CGB) face as she delivered when it counted to claim the women’s 400m national title on day three of the Australian Athletics Championships in Melbourne.
“I’m so stoked, You have no idea, I’ve been trying all season, up and down, up and down, I got sick on Thursday which wasn’t ideal and then to win it with a personal best I couldn’t believe it”, said Mitchell.
“I stuck to my race plan and it paid off, just held myself until 150m to go and then just gave it my all, so it paid off.”
“I got a qualifier and I won, I now have to keep working as I was ready to take a month off, I didn’t believe myself until I got to the start line and then I thought I could win this.”
Deferring studies looks to have played a critical part in Mitchell’s success and will now await confirmation of selection on her first senior Australian team in Glasgow.
“It was a bonus that paid off, I’m just working part-time, my days consist of training, work and playing basketball, I live a pretty chilled lifestyle.”
In a slow final 2012 London Olympian Zoe Buckman won the women’s 1500m national title with a time of 4:10.86.
“I was feeling my way through it, it was a championship race, no pace, tactical race, that’s a skill I’m accruing, to feel your way through the race.”
“Just run a good tactical race, and that’s what I had to do here today to secure my spot on the team.”
“You got to be happy with the win, judged my kick just right, was a bit bold going into the wind down on the back straight, but, I know that I’m strong.”
New South Wales Joshua Ralph (1:46.57) again had the edge over Victorian Institute of Sport pair Alex Rowe (1:46.68) and Jeff Riseley (1:47.11) in the men’s 800m national final.
“It was probably one of my best runs of the season, Ralph had me by point one of a second, I beat Jeff for the first time this season so have to take the positives out of it,” Rowe said.
“No denying I’m a little disappointed but Ill use that for motivation.”
“I guess in Perth I was to far back, in Melbourne I was too far in front, so I ran a lot better race in that one.”
Ballarat based Victoria Mitchell has secured automatic qualification for the Glasgow Commonwealth Games later this year after winning the women’s 3000m steeple national title in a ‘B’ qualifying standard time of 9:42.01
Coburg Harriers Stella Radford (10:29.55) finished fourth with Melbourne University Sarah McSweeney finishing fifth in a time of 10:31.84.
Chilwell Athletics Richard Coleman was impressive winning the men’s 1500m wheelchair national title in 3:29.77 while also collecting silver in the 100m wheelchair final with a time of 16.11.
Ballarat’s Collis Birmingham kicked with 800m to go and turned on the speed to claim the 5000m national title in 13:44.55.
Birmingham went toe-to-toe with New South Wales Ben St Lawerence for the majority of the race but the speed of the 2014 world indoor 3000m finialist was enough to add the 5000m crown to his Zatopek:10 10000m national title.
Ringwood Athletics Kim Mulhall threw 15.00m to claim the women’s shot put national crown ahead of South Australian Alifatou Djibril distance of 14.93m on her fourth attempt.
Geelong Jess Gulli has progressed to the women’s 400m hurdles final after recording second fastest semi-final time of 59.99 and convincingly winning heat two.
Australian Capital Territories Lauren Wells cruised through heat one in a time of 58.00 to head into tomorrow afternoon’s final as hot favourite.
Wells recorded a season best of 56.56 in Perth earlier this year, .56 outside the ‘A’ qualifying standard while Gulli added a ‘B’ to her name at last months IAAF Melbourne World Challenge with a personal best of 57.30.
Athletics Chilwell Tessa Consedine will also feature in the final after a solid run of 60.71 ensured automatic qualification.
Athletics Essendon Ellen Pettitt recorded a Commonwealth Games ‘B’ qualifier with a jump of 13.43m in the women’s triple jump to claim sliver behind Queensland’s Linda Leverton who produced a personal of 13.93m to secure automatic selection for the Glasgow Games in July.
Glenhuntly Athletics Nicolas Hum (T20) added a silver in the 100m ambulant to his day one gold medal in the long jump.
Ballarat’s Joel Bee continued his impressive season with a silver medal in the 100m final with a time of 10.64 behind New South Wales Tim Leathart who won in 10.56 in difficult conditions.
Sandringham Athletics Ashleigh Whittaker (11.95) was impressive in the women’s 100m to claim bronze behind two of the sports super stars Sally Pearson (11.70) and Melissa Breen (11.90).
Mentone athlete Paige Greco (T37) also made it through to the women’s 100m ambulant final finishing eighth with a time of 16.47.
Old Melburnian Sam Baines unfortunately didn’t make it through the warm up after a slight injury concern.
Baines was resigned to the same fait at last months IAAF Melbourne World Challenge and will have to wait on discretionary selection.
As expected with no Baines in the heats New South Wales Nicholas Hough was the fastest qualifier with a ‘B’ standard of 13.87.
Frankston athlete Ben Khongbut made it through to the final as one of the next two best times in 14.39 seconds.
Wondonga athlete Dennis Ramsay (F57) continued his strong nationals campaign by adding a second gold on day three in the men’s secured shot put with a throw of 8.78m. Taking his over total to two gold and one bronze.
Frankston thrower Jessee Wyatt joined Ramsay on the podium as he continues his strong season finishing third with a throw of 6.13m.
92nd Australian Athletics Championships:
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