Jenny Blundell has put in a huge performance overnight at the IAAF World Challenge in Beijing, running an Olympic qualifying time of 4.04.62 in the 1500m.
Blundell surprised many as she was able to hang with talented Kenyan middle-distance runner, Hellen Obiri. The former 3000m world indoor champion was pushed to the very end up by Blundell as she took out the race in 4.02.11.
The break out run smashed Jenny’s previous personal best in the 1500m by 5.05 seconds. The run was also the fifth all-time fastest 1500m run by an Australian woman.
Blundell is a 21 year old currently studying a Bachelor of Applied Science at Sydney Uni and is also a part of our Elite Athlete Program.
Jenny is now one of the favorites to join already selected Melissa Duncan in the 1500m team for Rio 2016. The other favorite to make the team is Victoria’s Linden Hall who clogged an impressive Olympic qualifying time of 4.04.47 at the Payton Jordan Invitational in America a few weeks ago. Blundell was able to beat both Hall and Duncan at the Hunter Track Classic earlier this year with a then PB and considering the Australian women’s 1500m team is made up of three members, Jenny is sitting in a great position for Rio selection.
Nothing is a given however as Blundell’s Olympic fate rests in the hands of selectors, with the final selection meeting being on July 12. 1500m stalwarts Zoe Buckman and Heidi See will be hot on the heels of Jenny for Rio selection, along with young guns Bridey Delaney and Katelyn Simpson in what is a talented bunch of athletes to choose from.
Jenny has previously competed at both the 2011 World Youth Championships in the 800m (5th in semi-final in 2.09.15) and the 2012 World Junior Championships in the 1500m (7th in her heat in 4.24.35). Jenny’s hard work to get to this point can be shown in her gradual improvement from year to year in the 1500m; (2016 – 4.04.62, 2015 – 4.14.62, 2014 – 4.12.00, 2013 – 4.17.96, 2012 – 4.18.31, 2011 – 4.18.27).
Congratulations on the great run Jenny and good luck for Olympic selection. GO USYD!
Photo Credit: Sydney Uni Athletics Club