Wellings flirts with Zatopek:10 history

2015 Beijing world championships 5000m finalist Eloise Wellings will attempt to be the first women to win back-to-back Australian 10,000m titles on two separate occasions at Zatopek:10 next Saturday 5 December at Lakeside Stadium, Albert Park.

33 year-old Wellings claimed the national 10,000m track crown in 2009, 2010 and 2014, and will hope to replicate that outcome next Saturday night.

Zatopek:10 will double as the Rio 2016 Olympic Games selection trial for the 10,000m events and Wellings will be looking to go under the qualification standard of 32:15.00 minutes.

After a couple of weeks in Uganda, final preparations for Wellings will take place at Falls Creek before traveling to Melbourne to compete.

Great Britain 2010 Commonwealth Games 10,000m fourth placegetter Charlotte Purdue will be one of the international raiders in the mix for line honours.

After limited racing in 2013 and 2014, the 24-year-old has returned to the road and track in 2015 and will line up with a personal best of 32:03.25 over 10,000 metres

2015 City2Sea winner Makda Haji (Ethiopia) will be another at the front of the pack, pushing Wellings and Purdue after an average pace of 3.23 and time of 50:55 minutes at the 15km Melbourne road race, ahead of Glenhuntly distance runner Tarli Bird (53:15), who will also line up in the 10,000m at Zatopek:10 2015.

A bit of unknown will be New Zealander Camille Buscomb who steps up to the 10,000m track event. With a respectable personal best of 15:30.50 over 5000m in California at the start of 2015, Buscomb is one who may pull a surprise on the night.

2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games marathon representative Sarah Klein will also be in the mix along with pacers Melissa Duncan and Genevieve La Caze out to set up the race for Wellings and co.

In the men’s event 2014 Zatopek:10 winner Brett Robinson will return to Lakeside Stadium in a bid to raise the Zatopek bust for a second consecutive year.

The race will have a strong Melbourne Track Club flavour with Robinson joined by 2008 winner David McNeill and pace Luke Mathews.

Along with Wellings, Robinson, McNeill and Mathews have used Falls Creek as training base in the lead up to Zatopek and the start of the domestic summer track season.

On the international front US athlete Brian Shrader looks the most likely to cause trouble for the local runners. The former Northern Arizona All-American will follow in the footsteps of 2013 Zatopek:10 winner Sam Chelanga who won and was four spots ahead of Shrader at the US National 12k Championships earlier this month.

Essendon’s Mitchel Brown will head into the national 10,000m with confidence after an impressive win at the Victorian 5000m championships last week ahead of Knox up and coming talent Zak Patterson.

Brown will be joined by fellow Essendon and Glasgow 2014 marathon athlete Liam Adams, who backs up after a solid win at The City2Sea earlier this month in a time of 44.34 minutes.

New South Wales athlete Harry Summers is another who will be preparing to mix it with the front pack and have one eye on the clock and a sub 28 minutes time to claim a Rio 2016 Olympic qualification standard.

Highlights off the track will be Australia’s leading women pole vaulter Alana Boyd (Queensland) starting her summer season in the Steve Hooker Pole Vault challenge.

With Zatopek:10 sitting within the 2015 Australian All Schools Championships program there will be a number of support events including; the under-18 Swedish Relays, Victorian 100 yards championships, Gary Honey Long Jump Challenge and De Castella (men) and Ondieki (women) under-20 3000m events.

What: A celebration of Athletics featuring the Australian 10,000m Championships doubling as the Rio 2016 Olympic Games Selection Trial supported by our friends at Little Athletics Victoria and Athletics Australia.

Where: Lakeside Stadium, Albert Park
When: Saturday 5 December 2015
Entry: Tickets at the Gate from5:30pm
Cost: $20

Social Media: #Zatopek10