Isaiah Priddey from Hamilton Boys’ High School has added another goal medal to his burgeoning collection of running titles. On Saturday he won the New Zealand and Oceania U18 Cross Country Championships at the Auckland Domain.
Surprisingly it was just the second time he had run competitively in Auckland and he was apprehensive about a positive outcome.
“I had never run at the Domain and the only time I had competed in Auckland was when I lost to Jacob Holmes at the Auckland Championships. I was worried about the ground conditions. It’s been a relatively dry summer, but it rained heavily a couple of days beforehand which was going to make the mud a big factor,” Priddey explains.
Priddey competed in the same race last year and finished 12th. That experience proved to be valuable.
“I had a good track season, much better than last year, so I knew if I struck to my race plan I would do alright. Last year I set myself goals to achieve at certain points of the race and when I didn’t reach them I started to panic and fell away. Last year enhanced my mental toughness,” Priddey says.
The race started at a slow pace as the runners wadded through the mud. The first two laps saw a bunched field before the genuine medal contenders started to break away. Priddey captures the exciting climax.
“With about 1200m to go Kalani Sheridan, Trent Dodds, Jacob Holmes and myself broke away from the rest of the field approaching a hill. Kalani fell away briefly which was surprising because I expected him to finish strongly. Jacob pushed up hill and got a small lead, but I wasn’t panicing because my legs felt quite good. With about 500m to go Trent dropped away and Jacob started to fade, but Kalani came powering back. I still felt good and fortunately had the greater kick coming home.”
Next Wednesday Priddey heads to the Australian Championships where he finished 17th in 2015. His goal is a top ten result, but a change in his approach means not as much emphasis is been placed on specific results.
“Obviously I want to do well, but sometimes I think I become bogged down in goals and results. I would like to relax more and run my type of race and hopefully the rest will look after itself,” Priddey concludes.
New Zealand & Oceania CC Results
U18 Men’s (6km):
1st: Isaiah Priddey (Hamilton Boys’ High School)
2nd: Kalani Sheridan (Nayland College)
3rd: Trent Dodds (Macleans College).
4th: Jacob Holmes (Sacred Heart College)
5th: Theo Quax (Macleans College)
U18 Women’s (4km):
1st: Hannah O’Connor (Sacred Heart, New Plymouth)
2nd: Tessa Webb (Feilding High School)
3rd: Liliana Braun (Cashmere High School).
4th: Bridie Edwards (Waimea College)
5th: Grace Ritchie (Waikato Diocesan)
U15 Women’s winner: Charli Miller (St Peter’s School, Cambridge)
U15 Men’s winner: Finlay Seeds (Hutt International Boys’ School)
Note: Cameron Avery, who CSM spoke with several weeks ago, won the Men’s U20 race. link tohttp://www.collegesportmedia.co.nz/athleticsxc/hard-work-pays-off-for-junior-triple-track-champion-cameron-avery
Looking for USA Scholarships? Check out USA CONNECT
Looking for $40000 University of Waikato Study Scholarships CLICK HERE
Looking for Sport Exchange Opportunities to Australia CLICK HERE
College Sport Media is dedicated to telling the story of successful young sportspeople in New Zealand