News & Updates

16 February 2023 • Track and Field

Preview | International Track Meet

Commonwealth champion and Olympic bronze medallist Tom Walsh will be among the star names in action at the ITM. (Photo: Alisha Lovrich)

The starting pistol will be fired on the first of the two World Athletics Continental Tour bronze meets during the 2023 domestic summer season as the International Track Meet at Nga Puna Wai in Christchurch takes place from noon on Sunday. 

Anna Percy competes in the 100m hurdles and later the 100m while Georgia Hulls will go head to head with Elliott in the 200m. At the Capital Classic Hulls just shaded Elliott in 23.61.

Tiaan Whelpton and Tommy Te Puni are down for the 100m and 200m. Whelpton jointly holds the New Zealand resident record of 10.18 with Joseph Millar and will be keen to add the meeting record which stands at 10.35 to the stadium record of 10.25 that he holds.

James Preston with a personal best of 1:45.30 will be aiming to improve on his meet record of 1:47.31. Dominic Devlin comes in fresh from his 1:50.01 victory at the Porritt Classic.

Angie Petty, seven times New Zealand 800m champion will race on her home track in the 800m. Jennie Hauke has enjoyed a good run recently with a fourth at Potts, second at Capital and a win last Saturday at the Porritt in 2:06.97. These two should provide the incentive for Tillie Hollyer, Rosa Twyford and Kiera Hall to improve their times.

Tom Walsh, world champion, world indoor champion and Commonwealth champion is defending the ITM shot put title. He hold the stadium record of 21.70m and will be eying the 22 metre line and Ryan Crouser’s meet record of 22.05m. Aiden Harvey the Australian champion with a best of 19.36m enters the shot put along with Nick Palmer of Hastings who shot a PB of 19.16m at the pre-Potts Classic last month.

Natalia Rankin-Chitar has improved on her best in the women’s shot from 14.95m at Capital to 15.56m at the Porritt Classic and is on a roll and will be looking for further improvement.

Connor Bell national and resident discus throw record holder with 66.14m will be aiming for the all comers record of 66.81m which will give him a clean sweep of every New Zealand discus record from under 17 up.

Tatiana Kaumoana is the leading thrower in the women’s discus.

Australian athletes Julian Konie, Shemiah James, Aiden Hinson, Ayo Ore and Connor Murphy will contest the triple jump and New Zealand’s Ebuka Okpala will relish the opportunity to compete alongside his Aussie counterparts. Desleigh Owusu, second in the Australian championships with 13.49m is in the women’s triple.

Anthony Nobilo has been the stand out domestic male hammer thrower this year and will be looking to better his meeting record of 66.44m from last year. In the women’s equivalent, look out for two-time British champion Jessica Mayho – a 69.44m thrower at her best. Lexi Maples will provide the main New Zealand challenge.

New Zealand under 20 champion Adam Stack heads the men’s high jump while Keeley O’Hagan and Imogen Skelton will match heights in the women’s.

Japanese decathlete Masaki Tomooka, now resident in Christchurch will have a hit out over the 110m high hurdles where his best is 15.14m.

Para Athletes Danielle Aitcheson, Anna Steven, Sarah Jones and Will Stedman take to the track in the sprints while Rorie Poff will be aiming to advance his F34 New Zealand shot put record of 7.13m set in Canberra last month.

By Murray McKinnon