News & Updates

14 March 2023 • Track and Field

Zoe Hobbs headlines entries for Sir Graeme Douglas International presented by Harcourts Cooper & Co

Zoe Hobbs will be out to nail another sub-11-second clocking at the Sir Graeme Douglas International presented by Harcourts Cooper & Co at the Trusts Stadium in Henderson on Thursday (16 March).

Since January last year Hobbs has lowered the New Zealand national record six times from 11.21 to her sensational 10.97 in Sydney on Saturday.

Hobbs holds the meeting record of 11.45 set in 2021 and she won last year in a wind- assisted 11.18.

Among her chief opposition will be New Zealand 100m bronze medallist earlier this month Brooke Somerfield and in-form national 100m hurdles champion Anna Percy. Five Australian sprinters will be competing headed by teenager Torrie Lewis who clocked a personal best 11.23 in finishing second to Hobbs in Sydney.

The highlights in the field events will be the rematch of Jacko Gill and Tom Walsh in the shot put and Olivia McTaggart and Eliza McCartney going head to head in the pole vault.

Gill after winning numerous junior titles finally claimed the senior title two weeks ago with a throw of 21.80m, to break Walsh’s 13-year reign as champion. Australian champion Aiden Harvey with a best of 19.36m is also entered. Walsh set his New Zealand resident record of 22.67m at this meet in 2018. 

McTaggart set a new PB and achieved the 2023 World Championship entry standard height of 4.71m on the North Shore on Saturday and McCartney will be aiming to achieve that height as well. The latter won the national title with 4.61m and went over at the same height on Saturday. McCartney holds the meeting record of 4.82m set in 2017.

The men’s 100m – run across two timed finals – has attracted a strong line up. In the absence of New Zealand 100m champion Tiaan Whelpton, who has withdrawn through Covid, leading the home charge will be Hamish Gill, who set a PB of 10.39 in Sydney on Saturday. Red-hot national 110m hurdles champion Josh Hawkins who clocked a 100m PB of 10.51 in November, is also entered and a strong Australian challenge is headed by their national champion Jake Doran. Japan’s Taju Hongo has a best of 10.12 and will also be a threat.

The first three from the national championships, Lex Revell-Lewis, Fergus McLeay and Troy Middleton will battle out the 400m.  New Zealand number one Tommy Te Puni and John Gerber will also be a factor. 

Takayuki Kishimoto of Japan, a former World University Games silver medallist and national 400m hurdles champion, will be fancied to establish a meeting record with a PB of 48.41.

Eric Speakman second at the nationals and Russell Green third are down for the 1500m along with Matthew Taylor and a good representation of six Japanese athletes. Rikuto Ijima and Ryoji Tatezawa both have a best of 3:38.35.

Julian Oakley ,who ran his best 5000m of 13:29.74 at the Daikin Night of 5s in December, and won the national title in 13:52.32 should continue his winning ways over the distance.

Nick Southgate and James Steyn will have plenty of incentive in the pole vault with competition coming from Oceania champion Dalton Di Medio of Australia best of 5.30m and Canadian champion Nathan Filipek who has cleared 5.40m. Southgate holds the meeting record of 5.30m achieved twice in 2016 and 2019.

Australian long jumpers Liam Adcock with 7.90m, William Freyer 7.85m and Benan Oztorun 7.41m will compete against the first three from the New Zealand championships Shay Veitch, Felix McDonald and Lewis Arthur.

Jeremy Andrews of Australia holds the meeting record of 7.88m from 2020.

Rosie Elliott with a best of 52.16 and the meeting record holder from last year with 52.99 will have her eye on the clock as she chases the long standing national record of 51.60. Also entered are Stella Pearless and Jennie Hauke as well as Australia’s Jessie Andrew who has a best of 53.37.

Melissa Duncan of Australia 2015 1500m meeting record of 4:10.13 could be broken with last year’s winner and national champion Laura Nagel and Rebekah Greene renewing their season-long rivalry. Nozomi Tanaka eighth at the Tokyo Olympic Games with a best of 3:59.19 leads three further athletes competing from Japan. Rebecca Mehra from the USA with a best of 4:04.90 is also entered.

Portia Bing, who set a national 400m hurdles record of 55.50 at the 2022 edition of this event – which she subsequently bettered at the 2022 Jennian Homes New Zealand Track & Field Championships leads the entries in the women’s 400m hurdles. 

Maddison Wesche with a PB of 19.50m from the 2022 World Championships snagged the recent national title with an impressive 19.13m and will take all the beating in the women’s shot put. 

Australian long jumpers Tomysha Clark best of 6.49m, Tay-Leiha Clark 6.38m and Annie McGuire 6.49m will face off against the gold and silver medallists at the 2023 Jennian Homes New Zealand Track & Field Championships –  Mariah Ririnui and Kelsey Berryman.

Two-time Paralympic gold medallist Anna Grimaldi T47 is also entered in the long jump. Danielle Aitchison, Anna Steven, Mitch Joynt, Jaxon Woolley and Joe Smith have entered in the Para Athlete 100m.

The meeting starts at 4.30pm with the men’s pole vault and the women’s long jump and ends at 9.15pm after the men’s 5000m.

Buy tickets here

The livestream is available from 4.25pm on Thursday here

Updated entry lists and lane draws here

Timetable here