Victoria’s best mix it at the 2015 Victorian Track Relay Championships

2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games 200m semi-finalist Ashleigh Whittaker stormed home for Sandringham in the women’s 4 x 100m relay final to close out a strong day for the bayside club at the 2015 Victorian Track Relay Championships at Lakeside Stadium.

One of the final events on the program, the women’s 100m relay final produced an exciting finish with Sandringham crossing the line in 47.51 seconds.

The real interest for spectators was when 2015 world championships long representative Brooke Stratton kicked late to secure second place for Athletics Nunawading in a time of 48.23 seconds, with a photo finish separating Athletics Essendon with a time of 48.24 seconds.

In the men’s 4 x 100m relay Old Melburnians summer recruit Will Johns worked clear on the home straight to clinch the Victorian title in a time of 41.58 seconds ahead of Glenhuntly who benefited from Aidan Debernardi strong work on the final bend to see the Hunters finish in 42.07 seconds ahead of third place St Kevin’s in a time of 42.13 seconds.

Australian 800m record holder Alex Rowe hit the track at Lakeside Stadium for the first time this summer as he anchored the St Kevin’s 4x800m team into bronze with a final leg of 1.48 minutes.

It wasn’t enough to chase down winners Deakin who crossed the finish line in a time of 7:38.08 minutes and second place St Stephens Harriers who did enough to hold on to second with a time of 7:45.69 minutes.

In the women’s 800m relay 2014 world junior representative Georgia Griffith powered home for Box Hill to take the state title in 9:16.04 minutes ahead of Eureka (9:33.12) and Melbourne University Athletics (9:38.22).

2008 world indoor 800m champion Tamsyn Lewis-Manou lead Sandringham to victory in the women’s distance medley with a strong final 800m leg to stop the clock at 3:58.35 ahead of a Western Athletics team including 2015 world championships representative Morgan Mitchell (4:03.44) and Athletics Essendon in third with a time of 4:07.60 minutes.

The heats of the 400m relays showcased some of Victoria’s top athletes with Lewis-Manou backing up her 800m to guide Sandringham into another Zatopek:10 2015 4 x 400m relay final appearance, with the fastest qualifying time of 3:50.21 minutes.

Athletics Essendon (3:53.24), Old Xaverians (4:01.04), Geelong Guild (3:53.99), Box Hill (3:54.05) and Knox Athletics (4:01.22) all automatically qualifying for the final next Saturday night at Zatopek:10 2015.

Doncaster (3:54.16) and Melbourne University Athletics (3:55.72) qualified as the next two fastest times from the heats.

In the men’s 400m-relay heats Old Melburnians ‘A’ team lived up to their pre race billing to qualifying fastest for next weekend’s final in a time 3:13.90 minutes.

The question will be can they get close to St Stephens Harriers 1978 Victorian club record of 3:06.5 minutes.

Doncaster produced the second fastest 4x400m heat time of the day, stopping the clock at 3:17.06 ahead of Old Melburnians ‘B’ team who finished third with a time of 3:21.36.

Rowe dropped in distance to help St Kevin’s qualify for the final at Zatopek:10 2015 with a time of 3:19.56 minutes.

The sole country region to feature in the final will be Bendigo Region (3:21.46) with Diamond Valley (3:23.80) also automatically qualifying. Knox Athletics (3:22.37) and Athletics Essendon (3:22.93) round out the line up as the next two fastest times from the heats.

The 2015 Victorian Track Relay Championships program started with the men’s 40 and 50 plus 1500m events at Lakeside Stadium.

Box Hill men’s 40 plus team of Andrew Egginton, Kynan Dawes, Tony Langelaan and Robert Schwerkolt was the first team to stop the clock with a time of 18:20.62 ahead of Bendigo (18:57.98) and Athletics Nunawading (19:00.07).

In the combined event Box Hill’s men’s under 50 team including Scott Lawrence, Chris O’Connor, Peter Stefanos and John Meagher stopped the clock at 19:39.09 to win confortably ahead of Diamond Valley (20:54.51) and Keilor St Bernards closing out the podium with a time of 21:20.29 minutes.

Knox Athletics team of Julia Edwards, Kirsten Jackson, Simone Quin and Kate Seibold controlled the women’s 40 plus 1500m event from start to finish, lapping the entire field to win in a time of 20:29.69 ahead of Wendouree (22:45.20) and Western Athletics 23:20.75 minutes.

In the distance medley relays Sam Kohne anchored Albury Athletics to gold with a strong 800m to record a time of 3:46.85 minutes. Box Hill finished second in 3:47.31 and Bendigo Region third in a time of 3:49.34 minutes.

A reminder that 4x400m open finals will be run at Zatope:10 2015 next Saturday 5 December at Lakeside Stadium.