News & Updates

2 August 2021 • General

Weekly Round Up: 2 August

TOKYO, JAPAN - AUGUST 01: Valerie Adams of Team New Zealand celebrates with the bronze medal during the medal ceremony for the Women's Shot Put on day nine of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Olympic Stadium on August 01, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Dame Valerie Adams completes her set of Olympic medals, adding Tokyo 2020 bronze to the two golds and one silver previously achieved (Photo: Getty Images)

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Results

XXXII Olympic Games, National Stadium, Tokyo – Athletics 30 July – 8 August 2021
Friday 30 July: Hamish Kerr was one of 13 who cleared 2.28m to qualify for the final of the high jump. He finished third in group A. His series was 2.17m o, 2.21m o, 2.25m xo, 2.28m o.

He was relieved to make the final. “We knew it was there. We knew that if we executed our process we would get a good result, so I am just unbelievably stoked that I’m here and get to jump again on Sunday,” said Hamish.

Two-time Olympic shot put champion Dame Valerie Adams became the first shot putter in history to reach five Olympic finals with an automatic qualifier of 18.83m. World Champion Gong Lijiao of China dominated the qualifying groups with a best throw of 19.46m, ahead of her compatriot Song Jiayuan (19.23m) and USA’s Raven Saunders (19.22m). Maddison-Lee Wesche, in her Olympic debut, propelled herself into the final with a PB 18.65m with her first throw to finish 11th out of the 12 to advance to the final.

Wesche said that she just tried to stay calm. “The plan was to make the final but to be in the Olympic final is crazy. I went with the rhythm and flowing with the flow, I’m just happy to be here and thinking positive. I’m extremely proud.”

Camille Buscomb ran in the first heat of round one in the 5000m, and finished 14th in 15:24.39. With a personal best of 14:58.59 from the 2019 world championships in Doha, she would have needed to have run 14:59.55 to make the top 15 for the final. She said that the conditions were extremely testing. “You don’t think it is going to be as hot then you realise when you are out there it is really humid and really hot, so I am hoping it will help me adapt. That’s my goal and hopefully it can come together a bit better on Saturday.”

Sunday 1 August: Dame Valerie Adams, in her fifth Olympic Games, claimed the bronze medal in the shot put, joining Barbara Kendall, Paul MacDonald and Blyth Tait in taking a gold, silver and bronze medals at an Olympic Games. Adams opened with 18.62m, progressing to 19.49m and 19.62m to sit in third place going into the final three rounds. She held that position with Lijiao Gong of China setting a personal best of 20.53m in round five and extending that to 20.58m in the final round to claim the gold medal. Raven Saunders of USA took the silver with 19.79m.

Adams, 36, has now competed in five Olympics and won 2 gold medals, 1 silver and 1 bronze, as well as finishing 7th in Athens in 2004, when she was just 19.

It was an emotional Adams in acknowledging the bronze medal. “This means so much more than winning my gold medals, I’ve worked so hard to be here today, and put myself in a situation where I had the opportunity to try and win a medal for New Zealand.

“From the last Olympics to these Olympics I’ve had two humans and these two children (holding up a photograph of three-year-old Kimoana and two-year-old Kepaleli) really inspired me throughout the competition I kept looking up to the stand imagining them there.

“I hope to continue to inspire athletes all around the world, if you want to have a kid and come back and be at the top of the world, you can, you can absolutely do that, and today’s a testament to that.

“I’m so grateful for the opportunity to compete for New Zealand and have this flag draped around my back, this means more to me than winning both gold medals together.

“I’m just super grateful for the help and support that everybody’s given me to make this happen. I’d like to make a special shout out to Dale Stevenson who took me on nine months ago, I had to move to Christchurch to make this happen,” said Adams.

Maddison-Lee Wesche, the youngest in the competition at 22, was outstanding in finishing sixth in the final with a huge personal best 18.98m in round three.

She held sixth in the final rounds with throws of 18.18m, 18.50m and 18.47m and was delighted with the outcome.

“I don’t think I could have done anything more, you always want more but to throw a PB again almost 24 hours later I’m pretty happy with that,” she said.

Wesche said that she has enjoyed her debut in the Olympic arena. “I’m having fun and relaxing, like I’ve made it here and you’ve got to enjoy every moment. I love doing shot put and I love travelling and that does give me a little bit more of a push,” she said.

Julia Ratcliffe qualified for the final of the hammer throw in sixth with 73.20m her opening throw in the qualification rounds, just 30cm short of an automatic qualifier.

“It was so good,” she said of her first throw. “It’s always such a relief to get that first throw out, especially one really close to that automatic qualifier. Two and three throws I was going for it, and might have gone too hard. That’s a really good lesson for the final.

“Getting to call yourself an Olympian is pretty epic now.

“To get a fair throw out and close to the qualifier early on definitely sets a tone for how you’re going to compete and definitely takes the pressure off,” she said.

“None of them felt like I really hooked one. I’m looking forward to taking the lessons from today technically and applying them on the final. I’m excited to get out there.

“It was so much fun. I haven’t been competing internationally since 2019, so it’s just so awesome to be in a massive stadium even if there’s no people there. It was really cool, the big stand gives that atmosphere, they had the music pumping, and it was a bit of a party in there.”

However, Lauren Bruce – who holds the New Zealand record at 74.61m – was unable to match Ratcliffe with a qualifying throw, her best on the day was 67.71m.

Bruce said that training and competition leading up to her first Olympics had gone well. “I couldn’t have asked for anything more in preparing for this, so I’ll go back home and take a break and get ready to go again. I was nervous, everyone’s nervous, I don’t think I went out there and owned the circle like I had earlier in the season,” said Bruce.

Hamish Kerr finished a creditable tenth in the high jump with a height of 2.30m. He went close on his final attempt at 2.33m.

He was stoked with his performance. “When I woke up today I just felt like a kid at Christmas and I just wanted to open my presents right then and there, I’m just so stoked as to how I did,” he said.

In an enthralling competition, Mutaz Barshim of Qatar and Gianmarco Tamberi of Italy shared the gold medal after both cleared 2.37m on their first attempt but failed at three attempts at 2.39m.

New Zealand Competition Results

Winter Throws Competition, AUT Millennium Stadium North Shore – 31 August 2021
Dyani Shepherd-Oates HT 50.76m. Centaine Noom-Duckworth DT 41.32m, HT 47.05m. Teagan Ashley HT 44.79m. Karmen-Elizabeth Maritz DT 40.95m, 3kg SP 11.85m. Anton Schroder 800g JT 55.12m. Anthony Barmes HT 54.18m, Arno Van der Westuizen 54.06m. Daniel Shaw 700g JT 47.47m PB. Corran Hanning F12 5kg SP 12.42m, 5kg HT 36.32m, 1.5kg DT 36.42m.

Winter Track and Field Series, Manawatu Community Athletic Track, Massey University – 31 August 2021
A moments silence was observed at the beginning of the meeting as a tribute to coach Mal Thomas who passed away on Thursday. Brayden Grant, who he coached, ran a special 800m in his memory recording 2:03.69. Hayley Cornwall ran 2:24.94.

Monique Gorrie 200m 26.72 +0.1. Alice Taylor HJ 1.62m. Anna Thomson TJ 12.24m +0.6. Analin Rudd TJ 10.02m +3.2. Tayla Cornwall 1000m 3:24.81. Mackenzie Morgan 3000m 10:31.02, Courtney Fitzgibbon 10:42.06. Poppy Rae 5000m 18:53.65.

Cody Wilson 60m 7.11 -0.6, 200m 22.03 +0.7. Angus Lyver 200m 22.26, LJ 5.67m +0.4. Saravee Sos 200m 22.45. Nelson Doolan 3000m 9:04.20. Luke Scott 5000m 14:46.91. Hanno Nel 6kg SP 12.44m, 1.5kg DT 35.82m. Forbes Kennedy LJ 6.04m -0.8.

Lakeside Relay, Lake Roto Kōhatu – 31 July 2021
The senior women’s 4 x 5km relay was won by University, with their team of Fiona Dowling, Ariana Candy, Navajo Prentice and Emily Molly recording 1:22:21. Fastest laps Olivia Ritchie 18:25 and Navajo Prentice 18:35.

Christchurch Avon won the senior men’s 4 x 5km relay in 1:06:15, 17 seconds ahead of University with Christchurch Avon’s second team third in 1:08:06. Fastest laps Cam Clark 15:41, Joseph Lynch 15:58, Shogo Watanabe 16:00.

Master women Sumner Robyn Perkins, Helen Bealey, Annette Campbell, Christina Freeman 1:36:41. Fastest lap Andrea Hewitt 18:13.Master men Sumner David Fitch, Nathan Jones, Paul Timothy, Kevin Grimwood 1:10:55. Fastest lap Chris Mardon 16:57.

Girls under 16 4 x 2.5km Christchurch Avon 39:38, fastest lap Brynne Gordon 9:13. Boys under 16 4 x 2.5km Christchurch Avon 35:44, fastest lap Art Aitken 8:06.

Athletics Canterbury Annual General Meeting – 29 July 2021
Life membership of Athletics Canterbury was conferred on long standing athlete, administrator, official and team manager Daniel Reese.

Daniel received an Athletics New Zealand long service award in 1996 and was made a life member of the University of Canterbury Athletic Club in 1999, and he has been president of the Club since 2006.

He was appointed to the Board of Athletics Canterbury in 2015 and has been secretary of the Centre since 2016.

International Results

JAC Final Countdown, Jacksonville FL, 17 July: Hamish Kerr HJ 2.24m (1).

Sound Running Sunset Tour, Azusa CA, 25 July: Jeff Lautenslager 1500m 3:48.07 (6RB). Craig Lautenslager 5000m 14:17.85 (17).

USATF Masters Championships, Ames IA, 22-25 July 2021: John Campbell M55 100m 12.12 +0.9 (1H1), Final 12.02 +1.3 (3). 200m 25.61 +3.4 (2H1), Final 24.50 +1.4 (2). M55-59 non-club 4 x 100m relay, anchor leg, 53.65 (1).

Road and Trail Races Around the Country

O’Hagan’s 5km, Viaduct Harbour, 27 July: Devon Beckman 16:50, David Bagot 16:53, Stephen Gilbert 16:59. Kayla Fairbairn 19:47, Tia Knight 19:59, Rosie Taylor 20:03.

Rat Race 5km, Takapuna, 28 July: Haoting Ma 17:40, Joel Martin 18:24, Tom Hanrahan 19:14.

Run Auckland 10km, Ambury Regional Park, Mangere, 1 August: George Mawson 34:17, Sam Schofield 37:12, Sebastien Baizet 38:44. Lisa Cross 38:51, Amelia Lythe 40:02, Clara Lachurie 42:21. 5km; Jacob Hewitt 18:36, Mark Carryer 18:49, Denika Clooney 18:54, Stephen Tan 20:05, Scarlett Gwin 20:51, Madison Rennie 20:52.

Taupo Marathon, 31 July: Ben Twyman 2:39:30, Chris Lines 2:41:50, Clinton Manderson 2:45:21. Natalie Price 3:06:14, Wendy Taylor 3:24:27, Shiri Friedler 3:28:37. Walk; Vicki Adlam 5:08:20. Half marathon; Jack Moody 1:06:38, Casey Thorby 1:09:36, Chris Wharam 1:13:07. Alice Mason 1:16:37 (5th overall), Sophie Corbidge 1:20:08, Deb Fuller 1:21:10. Walk; Donna Roderick 2:19:42.

Sprig and Fern 10km, Richmond, 31 July: Matt Bowen 35:48, Barney Hoskins 35:54, Dan Busch 35:59.

South Island Marathon, Lake Hood, 1 August: Simon Cromarty 1:12:06, Ben Hamilton 1:15:12, Rob Hamilton 1:19:54. Katie Morgan 1:24:53, Maggie McInnes 1:27:05, Serena Kelly 1:28:08.


Mal Thomas
Successful Manawatu athlete and coach Mal Thomas of Palmerston North passed away on 29 July 2021 aged 75.

Coached by Brian Seymour, he was a West Coast North Island champion over 100, 220 and 440 yards, having earlier won the Manawatu secondary schools titles over 100 and 220 yards.

On his move to Wellington, he was involved with coaching and set Bevan Smith on his path to success with a bronze medal in the 200m at the 1974 Christchurch Commonwealth Games. Back in Palmerston North he coached masters sprinters Vanessa Story and Brayden Grant to national titles and national records.

Jason Stack
Key Tasman official Jason Stack of Nelson passed away on 22 July 2021 aged 50.

He was an official at New Zealand championships as part of the starting team and involved with children’s athletics in Nelson.