SUAC domination continues at NSW X-Country Relay Championships

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Sydney University Athletics Club (SUAC) won both the men’s and women’s open events at the NSW X-Country Relay Championships on Saturday at Miranda, after the club smashed the course record in both events.

The rare double completes another great weekend for the club and moves the men’s team well in front in the winter premiership, with the women’s team moving into second position and within striking distance of the lead.

In the women’s 4x4km race Emily Brichacek made her debut for SUAC running a very swift 12.35 for the course. Brichacek, an Australian cross-country representative, was returning to racing for the first time after injury and set up a commanding lead for her team after she ran the fastest split of the day for the women. Ruby Hackett maintained the advantage, running a solid leg, before passing to exciting junior talent and SUSF Elite Athlete Program (EAP) scholarship holder Nat Archer (Bachelor of Science). Archer ran another strong leg, before passing to fellow scholarship holder Milly Clark (Bachelor Applied Science with Masters of Nutrition) who ran away for an impressive victory – with the girls breaking the course record by over three minutes. Interestingly, SUAC had another three women’s teams which all finished in the top 10.

In the men’s race a similar strategy was employed by SUAC with scholarship holder James Nipperess (Bachelor of Health Science {Physiotherapy}) leading off and running the second fastest split of the day and recording an astonishing time of 10.58. Nipperess will travel to Europe in two weeks’ time to chase a qualifying time which will see him earn selection in the World Championships later in the year in Moscow. SUAC’s second runner was Russell Dessaix- Chin. Chin, the most experienced of the SUAC distance runners, was fresh from breaking the club marathon record in Hamburg just over a month ago. He continued his good form running a brilliantly controlled leg to increase the lead, before passing to scholarship holder Hugh Williams (Bachelor of Physiotherapy). Williams, chased by Commonwealth games representative Ben Moreau, held all of his competitors at bay to provide SUAC with a big lead going into the final leg. SUAC debutant Liam Adams, who won the 2012 City to Surf, was then chased by Australian Olympic representative Jeff Hunt (Randwick Botany Harriers). Adams ran a stomping leg as he increased the lead for SUAC to take home the gold medal, and like the girls, smashed the course record by more than two minutes. Again highlighting the current depth of the club, SUAC had three more teams finish in the top ten.

On Sunday at the Balmoral Burn, a 450m race up the very steep Awaba St, SUAC enjoyed more success. The men’s race was won in stylish fashion by scholarship holder Josh Ralph (Bachelor of Applied Science {Exercise & Sports Science}). Not to be left out, fellow SUAC team mate and scholarship holder Joanna Cubis (Bachelor of Commerce) finished second in the women’s race, while Elizabeth Jenkins (also of SUAC) finished third.

The next event on the winter calendar for SUAC is the NSW X-Country Championships on June 22nd in Nowra.