2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games marathon runner Liam Adams has won his second Australian cross country title in emphatic style this Saturday 29 August at Moonee Valley racecourse.
“I didn’t really want to go that quick at the start, I just wanted to sit in the pack for the first lap and then try and build it home towards the end,” Adams said.
The multiple world championships cross country representative moved away from a lead pack of six early and maintained a gap of 150m alongside Australian Capital Territory state cross country champion Joshua Johnson.
“I got out there and probably ran a little to quick and just tried to hold on to that pace… I wanted a really big hit out today.”
Adams was using the championships as preparation for the October 11 Chicago marathon, where he hopes to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
“That’s the main aim right at the moment (Chicago marathon) so been doing a big training block, 200km weeks, millage went down a little bit this week, 180km,” Adams said.
Donning the Athletics Essendon colours, national cross country wasn’t a lock, but, with the choice of running in Chicago it worked out for Adams who claimed his second national title since taking honours in 2011.
“Originally I wasn’t sure if I was going to be running national cross or not, I was tossing up between Chicago and Berlin, once we worked out Chicago was the better option and, once we worked out Chicago was the better option me I thought we would chuck in the national cross country championships and have that as a big solid hit out.”
The 2014 Commonwealth Games representative will take plenty of confidence to Chicago in bid for a maiden Olympics appearance.
“It shows that I’m in good form and it good to have that reassurance, I’ve been doing a lot of hard work and it shows that it has all been paying off.”
2015 IAAF world cross country representative Courtney Powell has delivered back-to-back national titles after moving ahead of London 2012 marathon runner Jessica Trengove in the last kilometre of the 8k race.
“I’m really happy, it was in Melbourne which meant a few of the girls got to come and watch,” Powell said.
“It was really good to have all the naughty spectators cheering who weren’t in the spectator zone, as they were all over the course, so yeah I’m really happy.”
After a consistent season on track and road Powell is building up to her first Zatopek:10 race this December.
“I’m going to take on my first 10km track at Zatopek, I don’t know what it is going to be like, it will be a really good test for me, there is bound to be plenty of quality Australian and maybe even international runners in that race.”
Powell’s closest rival Trengove maintained the pressure in the final 500m but was unable to close the gap on the 2014 world junior 5000m representative.
“That was a real test, it was really good having her there and, all the other competitors.”
“I did what I had to win, I love racing, I was so excited to race,” Powell said.
“I just increased the pace a bit, I focused on, I know there weren’t to many hills but attacking the turns and I think that’s what got me away from everyone.”
In the under 23 men’s category ACT made it a one-two with Johnson (36.06) and Matthew Baxter (36:15) taking first and second while Victorian based athlete Stewart McSweyn finished third with a time of 36:45 minutes.
In the under 23 rankings Powell topped the list with New South Wales pair Kate Spencer (28:15) and Sarah Waters (28:19).
For the first time a masters challenge was introduced and in the men’s category Victorian John Meagher took line honours in 40:30 minutes ahead of Queensland’s Matt Macdonald (40:45) and Tasmanian Daniel Smee (42:04).
It was all Victoria in the women’s masters event with Kate Seibold (30:31), Angela Williams (31:01) and Julia Edwards (31:16) filling the podium.
The home state took team honours in both the open men and women’s grades. It was a close call in the men’s open division with the Victoria (23) claiming honours over the ACT (24) by one point.