The country’s top athletes descend on Trusts Stadium in west Auckland this weekend for the 44th New Zealand Secondary Schools Track, Field and Road Race Championships.
The event, held over three days, will see approximately 1200 athletes from almost 200 schools competing, making it one of the biggest events on the secondary schools calendar.
As always, much attention will focus on the sprint events, with strong fields in both the boys and girls sprints.
Sixty one boys will line up in the heats of the senior 100m, with James Guthrie-Croft (St Peter’s College, Auckland), Nick Smith (Hutt Valley High School) and South Island champion Bailey Cotton (Nayland College) all amongst the 100m and 200m contenders. Defending champion Jordan Bolland (Northcote College) is out injured. Oliver Miller (St Peter’s College, Auckland) will be among the pace setters in the senior 400m.
In the junior boys sprints, Auckland Grammar School’s Dominic Overand is one to catch, recently smashing the Auckland junior boys 14 100m hurdles record, recording 13.82 (+2.0) and breaking Niven Longopoa’s 2013 record of 14.19.
In the senior girls sprints, Lucy Sheat (Marlborough Girls’ College) and Georgia Hulls (Havelock North High School) will resume their rivalry, with others such as sprinter and long jumper Briana Stephensen (Napier Girls’ High School) and last year’s junior 100m and 200m champion Leah Belfield (Te Awamutu College) expected to be hot on their heels.
Focus will also fall on Kristen School pole vaulter Oliva McTaggart on day two of three on Saturday, who has just added a further eight centimetres to her recent New Zealand U17 record with a world class clearance of 4.30m. This makes her the top 16 year old in the world this year and third in the world youth rankings. Can she jump higher this weekend?
Based on some athletes that have caught our attention this year and on the results of the respective North Island South Island Secondary Schools Championships held in April, some other athletes to look out for this weekend include:
James Coates (St Bede’s College) – discus, shot put
Ryan Sutherland (Burnside HS) – 400m, 800m
Finn Seeds (Hutt International Boys’ School) – 800m
Mikael Starzynski (Wairarapa College) – 400m, 800m
Zion Trigger-Faitele (St Pat’s, Wellington) – discus, shot put
Jono Ansley (Sacred Heart College, Auckland) – 800m, 6km road race
Ryan Ballantyne (St Paul’s Collegiate, Hamilton) - shot put
Opetini Dryden (Wanganui Collegiate) – javelin
Scott Gregory (Whangarei BHS) – shot put
Max Karamanolis (St Pat’s, Wellington) - 1500m, 3000m, 6km road race
Nic Murray (Christ’s College) – javelin, hammer
Max Press (St Pat’s, Silverstream) – 800m
Isaiah Priddey (Hamilton BHS) – 1500m
Theo Quax (MacLeans College) – 1500m, 3000m
Max Spencer (Rathkeale College) – 800m
Mitchell Small (St Andrew’s College) – 1500m, 3000m, 6km road race
James Uhlenburg (Sacred Heart College, Auckland) 1500m, 3000m 6km road race
Angus White (New Plymouth BHS) – 1500m, 3000m
Pieta Hansen (St Andrew’s College) –100m, 200m, 400m
Kalisi Longopoa (MAGS) – 80m hurdles, 100m
Charli Miller (St Peter’s, Cambridge) – 3,000m, 3km [Year 9] road race
Genna Maples (Wanganui Collegiate) – 100m, 200m
Kaia Tupu-South (Westlake GHS) – discus, shot put
Phoebe McKnight (Hutt Valley High School) – 3000m, 4km road race
Tanya Murray (Sancta Maria College) – javelin
Hannah O’Connor (Sacred Heart College, NP) – 1,500m, 3,000m, 4km road race
Anna Skerrett (Southland GHS) – shot put
Lisa Putt (St Kentigern College) – long jump, triple jump
Ashleigh Bennett (Hawera High School) – long jump, triple jump
Tegan Duffy (Villa Maria College) – 100m hurdles, 300m hurdles, long jump
Adriana Mawhinney (Dunstan High School) – high jump, triple jump
Atipa Mabonga (Central Southland College) – triple jump, long jump
Emma Ryan (James Hargest College) – shot put, discus, hammer
Madison Wesche (Lynfield College) – shot put
Tessa Webb (Feilding High School) – 3000m, 4000m road race,
NZSS Athletics Championships at a glance:
What: 2016 New Zealand Secondary Schools Track, Field and Road Race Championships
When: 2-4 December (Friday, Saturday, Sunday)
Where: Trusts Stadium, Waitakere, Auckland
Schedule of events: View the meet schedule here: http://nzssaa.org.nz/static/nz-tf-2016/programme.pdf
Last year’s results: View last year’s results here: http://www.collegesportmedia.co.nz/athleticsxc/just-the-medalists-please-nz-schools-track-and-field-results-listed
Overall records: View the meet records here: http://nzssaa.org.nz/static/record-holders.pdf
Records broken last year:
The five oldest NZSAA records date back to the 1970s, these are:
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