Athletics Essendon Race Report, Results and Photos.
Athletics Victoria XCR’18 Round 10 of 10.
The Tan Track Team Relay Championships.
Saturday 15 September 2018.
by Stephen Murphy.
After a long winter season of nine races from April through to September, all across greater Melbourne and beyond, the final XCR’18 race culminated with the Tan Relays, at the spiritual home of distance running in Melbourne.
All runners, male, female, junior, open and masters where all required to run one hot lap of the 3.827km course around the outskirts of the Royal Botanical Gardens.
With a massive number of club teams entered, 18 in total, 10 men’s teams, three of those junior men and eight open women’s teams. The day was set for some fast individual times and for optimistically anticipated success for our club relay teams.
The morning dawned with forecasts of threatening weather of biblical proportions, but thankfully the worst of the weather did not appear and the racing commenced with a lead-up of a few strong wind gusts and a decent sprinkling of rain to remind us that winter had not finished just yet, even though we were in the third weekend of spring.
We had some excellent times from our junior athletes, for quite a few of them this was their last winter races as under 20 athletes, with XCR’19 to be their first season’s as winter open athletes.
The fastest female juniors were, U20 Amelia Mazza-Downie, U18 Ruby Ali, U16 Sienna Andrews.
And the fastest of the junior men were, U20 Mason Scott, U16 Lachlan Attard and U14 Ty Davis.
With quite a few of our higher achieving open male and open female distance runners unavailable for this event, the relay team selectors elected to promote a huge number of our juniors into our top couple of open men and women’s teams and the results proved to be outstanding.
The open men’s premier team were striving to avoid relegation in their division and they basically had to beat Knox in a head to head race off, with the vanquished to be relegated to division 2. A team of six, with Liam Adams and Mitch Brown both unavailable and with three under 20 runners, Mason Scott, Matthew Sostaric and Max Taylor, they managed to finish in eighth place of ten teams and ensured that Knox would be relegated and we would remain in the Premier division for XCR’19.
In open men’s division 3, with a mix of four race hardened 40+ runners and the speed of youth in under 20 runner Zach Mottram, the team finished above the bottom two places to remain in division 3 for XCR’19 and avoid relegation and this was achieved by finishing in tenth place of the fifteen teams.
Open men division 6 finished in a very respectable fourth place on the day and they finished in seventh place for the season.
Open men division 7 had four teams entered and the highest finishing team came in eighth of the 22 the teams in that division.
We had three junior men’s teams, two U16 and one U14 invitation team, which were made up of athletes coached by Mark Carey from the Gisborne LA’s.
Great to see Mark Carey bringing Gisborne LA’s runners to Melbourne to race, hopefully we see them racing in Aths Ess singlets in the not too distant future.
The two under 16 teams finished eighth (one runner was under 14) and fourteenth (two runners under 14).
The major highlights for the club were the open women’s team’s achievements on the day and their results for the season on the team ladders.
With athletes of the calibre of Linden Hall, Charlotte Wilson, Emilie Guy and Liselle Atkin all unavailable, it was so great to see the next generation of female athletes coming through ready and willing to take on the best female distance runners in Victoria.
The four runners in our open women division 2 were all juniors, three under 20, Amelia Mazza-Downie, Emily Spiteri and Maddison Caulfield and one under 18, Ruby Ali. The team easily finished second on the day, not far behind a strong Geelong team and ensured that we won the division two premiership and we would be promoted to premier division in 2019. After a minimum of five seasons of XCR stuck in division two, it is a fantastic result for our female athletes to finally return to premier division next year.
In division 4, we finished first, with 14 year old Sienna Andrews leading off our team and running the fourth fastest time of all 24 open and junior women runners. Sienna has had stunning season, in this her very first season of XCR ever. Joined by Erin Rayner and Lauren Connell, they ensured that the team finished second for the season and would be promoted to division 3 in XCR’19.
And in division 5 we fielded six teams, a mix of young and not so young runners and including five invitation runners from the Red and Black Running Team. Our fastest team finished fourth and ensured that the division 5 team would win the premiership and be promoted to division 4 in XCR’19.
In summary, the three open women’s teams will all be promoted in XCR’19, div 2 to premier, div 4 to div 3 and div 5 to div 4. And they won two premierships div 2 and div 5 and finished runners-up in div 4. This result is testament to the total team effort from all of the female runners, open and junior, for working together so well, to achieve these unprecedented results for the club. Every female runner who contested all races or even one race is a part of this result and they should all feel so very proud to have been a part of this fabulous suc
Thanks so much to all of our four club AV helpers, Raelene Mottram, Mitch Brown, Danny Hawksworth, Brian Anderson and to Duncan Knox and Christian Knox for again bringing along the club tent.
Also many thanks to those who helped out a short notice and took the relay runner team times for our club relay athletes.
This was the final winter race of XCR’18, we now look forward to AV Shield and a summer season of track and field competition. Round 1 commences on Saturday 6 October, just seven days after the 2018 AFL Grand Final. We are at home at Aberfeldie for round 1, so if you haven’t done so yet, get your 2018-2019 club registrations paid up and purchase the track and field package and let’s start the summer season off with as many athletes as possible to build on our successes of winter into a huge summer for the club.