Mottram back racing at Australia Post Stawell Gift

Date: 26th March 2013

2005 world championship bronze medallist Craig Mottram will make his return to racing at this weekend’s Australia Post Stawell Gift when he lines up in the University of Ballarat Herb Hedemann Invitation 1600m.

It will be the 32-year-old’s first competitive hit out since the London Olympic Games in August last year.

Mottram, who rolled over his legs in the 15km event at the Herald Sun / CityLink Run for the Kids on Sunday, is not heading to Stawell with more hope than expectation and will wait for the decision of the handicappers before placing any hopes on a victory.

“It just depends a little bit on the mark and how much ground I have to make up.  This will be my first race back since running in London at the Olympics,” Mottram said.

“I am expecting to have a good time as everybody does up at Stawell and run hard for four and a bit minutes and see how we go.”

Mottram, who has competed in the last two Australia Post Stawell Gift carnivals in the 3200m event for a best result of third in 2011, has a fond connection with Australia’s most prestigious footrace.

“It’s a great opportunity, it’s a fantastic event to come and run on grass and the handicapping is a unique experience of racing where not many athletes on the global scale get to do,” Mottram said.

When I get the opportunity, I love coming back and I will continue to support it for as long as I am fit and able.”

Mottram who is expected to start off scratch when handicaps are announced in the coming days will be joined in the University of Ballarat Herb Hedemann Invitational by 2012 and 2010 winners Brady Threlfall and Brenton Rowe as well as Ballarat runner Nathan Hartigan.

University of Ballarat Herb Hedemann Invitational 1600m – ATHLETES

Lachlan AspinallAlex Bacalja

Daniel  Clark

Kevin Craigie

Ben Crawford

Steve Dinneen

Tom Fawthorpe

Cameron Gatt

Douglas Hamerlok

Nathan Hartigan

Ashley Humphrey

Tyson Mahon

Michael Marantelli

Craig MottramJoshua Nolan

Tim Norton

Andrew Patten

Luke Percy

Michael Preece

Damian Robinson

Brenton Rowe

Harry Smithers

Brady Threlfall

Eddy Vining

Bradley White

Nicholas Wightman

The 2013 Australia Post Stawell Gift carnival will be held from Friday, 29 March and will conclude on Monday, 1 April.

The carnival kicks off with the Calcutta on Friday night and is followed by three days of thrilling racing, including the Driscoll McIllree and Dickinson Ladies Day and Family Day, all culminating in the 132nd running of the Australia Post Stawell Gift on Easter Monday.

The heats of the Australia Post Stawell Gift will be run from 1pm Easter Saturday, with the semi finals (12:40pm) and final (2:45pm) on Easter Monday.

Tickets can be purchased online or at the gate.

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