A HOST of Nowra Athletics Club’s talented juniors competed in track and field at the National Junior Track and Field Championships in Sydney recently.
Their performances come after months and some years of preparation with huge commitments by the athletes themselves, families and their respective coaches. To compete at the championships all the athletes had to meet a national standard of qualifying putting them all in the top sector of athletes for their age in Australia.
Sam Peace led the charge, performing at her best, with plenty of encouragement from her school, Sam won the gold medal in the 17 years discus with a personal best throw of 47.59 metres.
She then stepped back in the circle for the u20 discus event, placing fourth with a throw of 45.69 metres.
This was no mean feat for someone of Sam’s age, but she is not one to shy away from a challenge.
Younger sister Annie finished with a credible fifth in her 14’s age division with a throw of 29.62 metres.
On the track Nowra’s strength of young sprinters and distance runners was on show with athletes covering most disciplines.
The youngest athletes on the track were female sprinters Jade Mustapic and Jenna Bentley.
Jenna competed in the 14’s 200 metre event placing fifth in her heat in 27.68. Jade ran a PB in her 400 metre heat of 60.56 for second place.
The following day Jade ran her gruelling 400 metre final, sitting in second place until the final straight where she was relegated to fourth with the fight to the finish earning her another PB and a respectable time of 59.36.
Kristin Kalemusic is enjoying her transition from the 400 metre hurdles, competing in the u18 400 metres and 800 metre events.
Kristin placed fifth in her 800 metre heat in a time of 2.14.70 and third in her 400 metre race in 58.76.
Josh Byron ran the gruelling u18 400 metre hurdles event placing fourth in a time of 58.90.
Harry McGill made the most of his national debut in his 17 years 3000 metre event with a large field of 22 athletes.
Harry, known for his strength and determination, worked his way through the field to earn himself a seven second personal best time of 9.15.10 and 10th placed Australian.
Keeping it in the family, which Nowra Athletics is renowned for, Jye and Shenay Edwards took to the track in the middle distance events.
Shenay competed in the 15 years 800 metre event and after putting her hurdling skills to the test with a runner down on the track, Shenay finished eighth in 2.25.16.
Jye, having qualified for three events, opted to contest the 1500 metre event only, finishing his race strongly with fifth place in a new personal best time of 4.02.89.
Jye draws inspiration when he runs with some of the more experienced runners within the club and as quick as he is on the track, Jye’s shoes come off just as quick, preferring to go “Nowra style” like his idols Kevin Davis and Damian Smith.
With cross-country season just around the corner, many of the club’s members are looking forward to tackling the cross-country season with the club’s open day on Saturday, March 29 at Willandra.
For more information, please go to the club’s website www.