Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images
Sydney University Athletics Club’s 45-strong contingent at the 2018 Australian Athletics Championships held on the Gold Coast produced 30 finalists, 15 medalists, four national champions and eight athletes achieving automatic Commonwealth Games selection with more to be selected at the end of the month.
The four-day Championships doubled as selection trials for the 2018 Commonwealth Games to be held on the Gold Coast from 4-15 April.
SUAC Gold medalists included Nick Hough in the 110m Hurdles, James Nipperess in the 3000m Steeplechase, Annie Rubie in the 400m, and Michelle Jenneke and Larissa Pasternatsky as part of the NSW 4x100m relay team.
Silver medals were won by Josh Ralph in the 800m, Michelle Jenneke in the 100m Hurdles, Angie Ballard in the 1500m wheelchair, Paige Campbell in the 3000m Steeplechase, Rohan Browning in the 100m, Aiden Harvey in the Shot Put, and Justin Merlino in the 110m Hurdles.
SUAC Bronze medalists included Nicola McDermott in the High Jump, Josh Clarke in the 100m, and Larissa Pasternasky in the 200m.
From those performances, the four national champions Nick Hough, Ian Dewhurst, James Nipperess and Annie Rubie earned automatic Commonwealth Games selection having achieved either an A or B qualifier and winning the national championship, along with Josh Ralph, Michelle Jenneke, Angie Ballard and former SUAC athlete Madeline Hills having achieved an A qualifier and finishing 2nd.
Night 1 heat results: Josh Ralph (1:46.75 fastest qualifier) and Jenny Blundell (1500m) through to finals; Rohan Browning (10.32), Jin Su Jung (10.54) and Josh Clarke (10.43) through to 100m semi-finals and Annie Rubie (52.80) through to 400m semi-finals.
Day 2 heats and qualifying results: Ian Dewhurst and Matt Fisher (400m hurdles) through to finals, Gen Cowie (400m hurdles) through to semi-final; Rohan Browning (10.26), Josh Clarke (10.31) and Jin Su Jung (10.48) all though to 100m final; Angus Armstrong through to pole vault final.
Finals: Em Brichacek 4th in 5000m (SB & CGB qualifying time 15:43.67) and Lara Hamilton 9th place in the 5000m. Former SUAC athlete Madeline Hills achieved automatic Commonwealth Games selection with the Silver medal. In the 100m final which was an outstanding race, Rohan Browning finished with the silver medal (10.20) and Josh Clarke the bronze medal (10.31). Jin Su Jung finished 5th (10.47). Both Rohan and Josh hold Commonwealth Games B qualifiers and look set to be selected in Australia’s 4x100m relay team for the Commonwealth Games at the end of the month
Day 3 results – Heats and semi-finals: Gen Cowie (400m Hurdles) through to final; Larissa Pasternatsky (200m) cruised through the heat and semi final to make Sunday’s final.
Finals: Gold to Annie Rubie in the 400m in an outstanding race (51.92, CGA and CG auto selection); Gold to Nick Hough in the 110m hurdles (13.76, CG auto selection); Silver to Josh Ralph in the 800m (1:46.85, CG auto selection); Silver to Michelle Jenneke in the 100m hurdles (13.14, CG auto selection); Silver to Angie Ballard (T53/54 1500m, GG auto selection); Silver to Justin Merlino (110m hurdles), 4th to Jenny Blundell (1500m SB 4:11.97); 6th to Liz Clay (100m hurdles) and the completion of 10 events in hot weather for Josiah Becker (Decathlon).
Day 4 results – Finals: Gold to James Nipperess in the 3000m steeplechase (8:43.89, CG auto selection); Gold to Ian Dewhurst in the 400m hurdles (49.80, CG auto selection); Silver to Paige Campbell in the 3000m Steeplechase (9:49.00, 3rd CGB qualifier, PB and Club record); Silver to Aiden Harvey in the shot put (17.80m) in his first Open season just missing the Commonwealth Games B qualifer; Bronze to Nicola McDermott in the High Jump (1.80m); Bronze to Larissa Pasternatsky in the 200m (23.27, PB and CGB qualifier); 4th to Angus Armstrong (Pole Vault); 8th to Beth Croft (3000m steeplechase); 8th to Matt Fisher (400m Hurdles); 8th to Gen Cowie (400m Hurdles); 10th to Joe Burgess (3000m Steeplechase); field finals to Maddy Bergfield (Discus) and Matty Mountfort (Shot Put); Gold to NSW 4x100m team which included Michelle Jenneke and Larissa Pasternatsky.
An incredible 19 SUAC athletes achieved Commonwealth Games A or B qualifiers within the qualification period. 8 SUAC athletes have been automatically selected to represent Australia at the Commonwealth Games with Athletics Australia to announce the remainder of the team in late February.