News & Updates

2 February 2023 • Track and Field

Nagel seeks back-to-back national 3000m titles

Laura Nagel is gunning to defend her national women's 3000m title with recently-minted New Zealand mile champion Rebekah Greene among her main opposition. Credit: (Sharon Wray).

Laura Nagel will be defending her national 3000m title against the recently crowned New Zealand mile champion Rebekah Greene.

The 3000m championships are to be staged in conjunction with the Team Ledger Harcourts Capital Classic meeting at Newtown Park, Wellington on Friday. Nagel won last year’s title in Hastings in 9:28.87 and also snared New Zealand 1500m, mile and 5000m gold medals. Her personal best of 9:01.35 was set in Boston in 2014.

Greene is in top form scorching to a New Zealand resident mile record of 4:32.92 in Whanganui on Saturday. Her 3000m best of 9:17.22 was set in Ireland last July.

Hannah Miller, who bagged four national long-distance titles last year, moves down in distance and will be competitive having a personal best of 9:21.44 in Nashville in 2019.

Tillie Hollyer will be also looking for a podium placing after taking national mile bronze medal in a personal best 4:43.42 last Saturday. Rosa Flanagan holds the meeting record of 9:07.85 from 2015.

Julian Oakley will be the one to catch in the men’s championship. Currently firing on all cylinders in training the 29-year-old won the national 10,000m title in Wellington in November and will be defending the title he won in Hastings last year in 8:00.96. He has a best of 7:44.34 from Boston in 2017. Eric Speakman, who has taken the silver medal in the event in the last two years, has a best of 7:50.19 will be looking to go one better.

Oli Chignell always has plenty in the tank if it comes down to a sprint finish and with his best of 7:52.97 recorded in Norway last year he will be a threat. Matthew Taylor, the 2020 3000m champion and impressive winner of the 2022 national cross country title last July, will be another athlete with podium ambitions. Christian De Vaal, the national U20 champion and U18 New Zealand record-holder with 8:10.72 is stepping up to contest the senior title. De Vaal, who celebrated his 18th birthday two weeks ago, will be aiming for Will Anthony’s national U19 record of 8:04.25.

The meeting record of 7:53.41 held by Rory Hunter of Australia was set in 2019.

Athletes who have an eye on breaking a meeting record include Anthony Nobilo, who powered the hammer out to 68.95m three weeks ago, will seek to close in on Philip Jensen’s meet record of 67.43m. Lauren Bruce in the women’s hammer will aim to improve on her record of 71.66m, and Tori Peeters who look to attack the javelin record of 60.51m, Tom Walsh is up against Australian shot put champion Aiden Harvey in defending his meet record of 21.01m. Anna Thomson will be aiming at Nneka Okpala’s triple jump record of 13.12m and Joshua Hawkins will seek to improve on his 110m hurdles record of 14.34.

Tommy Te Puni should continue his winning form this season in the sprints and is entered for the 100m and 200m against Hamish Gill, Cody Wilson and Dhruv Rodrigues Chico, who has a wind assisted 100m 10.27 and 200m of 20.85 to his credit.

Holly Manning and Stella Pearless will resume their rivalry from the Potts Classic in the 800m and will be joined by Jennifer Hauke and Angie Petty. Michael Dawson 800m winner at the Cooks Classic will face Dominic Devlin, competing in his first race since taking out the 800m at the Night of Fives meeting in December.

National 200m champion Georgia Hulls competes in the 100m and will later race against Rosie Elliott over the half-lap distance. Elliott is also down for the high jump, where Imogen Skelton and national champion Keeley O’Hagan compete. Rafe Couillault will follow up his 2.06m clearance at the Jumps to Music meeting in the men’s high jump.

Australian triple jump champion Ayo Ore who has a best of 16.28m will provide a good competition against four-time New Zealand champion Ebuka Okpala.

Lucas Martin, Jonah Cropp and Laura Langley feature in the 3000m race walk while interest will centre on the Para athletes led by Paralympic shot F37 champion Lisa Adams, Sionann Murphy F37 and Caitlin Dore F37 in the shot put. Paralympic long jump T47 champion Anna Grimaldi T47 and double Paralympic sprint medallist Danielle Aitchison T36 will contest the 100m.

Athletes will be fighting for numerous awards totalling $20,000 including a $4000 meet record bonus pool to be shared by any athletes setting a meet record.

Field events and the men’s javelin throw start at 4pm on Friday (3 February) with the first track event – the 3000m race walk – starting at 4.30pm. A number of events qualify as a World Athletics Continental Tour challenger event.

By Murray McKinnon

***Team Ledger Harcourts Capital Classic start lists here

***Team Ledger Harcourts Capital Classic full programme here  

***Team Ledger Harcourts Capital Classic results here

***Access the livestream from 4pm here