Date: 1st April 2018

The favourites for the 2018 Stawell Athletic Club Stawell Gift and the Australia Post Women’s Gift will face off in the semi-finals tomorrow, with only one in each race to qualify for the richest footrace in Australia.

Last year’s winner Matt Rizzo from Langwarrin is hoping for a place in the final to fulfil his ambition of being only the second person in the 137-year history of the Stawell Gift to win consecutive finals.  Rizzo clocked the second fastest heat time of 12.287 so is ideally placed to win his semi-final and have a chance at the double.

Rizzo will run from 4.5m with odds earlier today of $2.60 in semi-final 6 next to his coach Matt Carter, the backmarker on 4m.

The three favourites – Matt, Jacob Despard and Gary Finegan – will follow each other in semi-finals 4,5 and 6 tomorrow starting at 12.23pm.

Fastest in the heats was Jacob Despard, also on 4.5m, but he will have his work cut out against US Olympic hurdler Devon Allen, with a handicap of 1m, in the same semi-final 5.

Kiara Reddingius is the favourite for the Australia Post Women’s Gift, in semi-final 6 with the fastest time of 14.067 and was at $3 earlier today.  She is in the same heat with highly favoured Mia Gross.

The Fighera sisters, Sophia and Sienna, line up in the same semi-final 4 in consecutive lanes together with third fastest qualifier Pam Austin.

In the mix is Anna Pasquali in semi-final 4, the second fastest qualifier and Tara Domaschenz, fourth fastest in semi-final 3 with two of the three Stallan sisters, (Caitlin and Lakara), from Adelaide.

The 70m races proved popular with the crowd and the athlete stables today as Stephanie Jinks won the final of the Telstra Store Ararat Women’s Handicap 70m in 8.46 seconds and 16-year-old Aidan Green won the Gift Hotel Arthur Postle Handicap 70m in 7.514.

Steph’s coach John Hilditch said: “I’ve just started coaching Steph after a break and she’s done everything I have asked of her. Hopefully it will be one and two for her tomorrow as she takes on the (Australia Post Women’s Gift) 120m race,” said John.

Aidan’s Green’s coach Craig Mair, who also competed today said: “Aidan is a young runner new to the sport, only 16-years-old and he lost his mum a few years ago.  The family is an incredibly close-knit bunch and that’s what our team is all about, with everyone caring about each other which has been Aidan’s saving grace. He could have lost his way but athletics has brought him back so it’s fantastic.”

Indigenous teenager Solomon Puemorra, who travelled from far north west WA for the first time outside Broome to compete in the Stawell Gift, was placed 4th in the Stawell Times News Under 18 (Boys) Handicap 100m final.

On the circular track Josh Furman won the Ararat RSL Victory Restricted Handicap 1600m, Chloe Sproule won the Past Runners Association Women’s and Masters’ Handicap 1600m, and Shane Woodrow took out the Grampians Estate WH Earle Handicap 550m.

Easter Sunday at the 2018 Stawell Gift Carnival was Cadbury Family day with plenty of off track action including the incredible Cadbury Easter Egg Hunt in the Central Park Rose Garden and the MattyB kids’ athletics clinic featuring several Stawell Gift finalists past and present.


Full results for Day 2 of the Stawell Gift Carnival are here.


Day 2 Photo gallery is here. Please use the password LHphotos to access the images and credit all images to Luke Hemer.

For all media enquiries please contact Jane Owen at 360 Sport and Entertainment on 0407 936 005 or email More information is available at


Semi Lane Colour Athlete Name Handicap Heat Time
  Red Olivia Russo 3.75 14.276
  White Grace O’Dwyer 4.00 14.610
  Blue Ebony Lane 6.00 14.142
  Yellow Natasha Rudder 6.50 14.555
  Green Stephanie Richards 7.00 14.486
  Pink Laura Downie 7.75 14.154
  Black Hannah Lindstrom 9.75 14.344
  Red Kendra Hubbard 2.25 14.214
  White Angela Byrt 4.50 14.408
  Blue Natassia Messent 6.50 14.543
  Yellow Jordan McMillan 6.50 14.159
  Green Ellie Whittingham 7.00 14.527
  Pink Lily Micklethwait 9.75 14.439
  Black Stephanie Jinks 11.00 14.132
  Red Hana Basic 2.75 14.492
  White Amie Mittiga 4.75 14.241
  Blue Tara Domaschenz 5.00 14.116
  Yellow Lakara Stallan 6.50 14.494
  Green Caitlin  Stallan 7.00 14.595
  Pink Caitlin Hawks 7.50 14.172
  Black Rachel O’Brien 10.00 14.554
  Red Sophia Fighera 5.25 14.555
  White Sienna Fighera 5.50 14.190
  Blue Tahlia Martin 6.00 14.398
  Yellow Mikayla Round 6.75 14.312
  Green Zoe Neale 7.50 14.527
  Pink Eleni Gilden 10.00 14.596
  Black Pamela Austin 10.50 14.091
  Red Holly Dobbyn 3.00 14.312
  White Alexia Loizou 5.25 14.353
  Blue Nicole Reynolds 6.75 14.541
  Yellow Kate Jones 8.25 14.247
  Green LAUREN KEATING 10.00 14.284
  Pink Anna Pasquali 10.25 14.083
  Black Cara Boustead 10.50 14.199
  Red Mia Gross 1.75 14.208
  White Kiara Reddingius 3.00 14.067
  Blue Elizabeth  Forsyth 7.00 14.277
  Yellow Kayla Lemm 7.50 14.241
  Green Davina Strauss 7.50 14.233
  Pink Loren London 8.75 14.609
  Black Edwina Kidd 11.00 14.407





Semi Lane Colour Athlete Handicap Heat Time
  Red Harrison Hunt 4.75 12.575
  White Dominic Mah 6.00 12.542
  Blue Jasper Nettlefold 6.25 12.500
  Yellow Harrison Kerr 7.75 12.585
  Green Evan Jarvis 8.50 12.397
  Pink Max Punchihewa 9.50 12.596
  Black Mason Keast 9.75 12.387
  Red Michael Pateman 4.75 12.576
  White Leonard King 5.75 12.561
  Blue Liam Dooley 7.00 12.607
  Yellow Luke Whitney 8.00 12.749
  Green Doug Greenough 9.50 12.694
  Pink Hamish Adams 9.50 12.402
  Black Hayden Wyllie 9.50 12.353
  Red Liam Moss 5.50 12.318
  White Taylor Sharpe 6.00 12.540
  Blue Luke Houlihan 6.00 12.534
  Yellow Nick MacGibbon 7.25 12.528
  Green Brendan Matthews 7.50 12.403
  Pink NATHAN MCNAB 8.50 12.611
  Black Jason Bailey 10.00 12.519
  Red Will Johns 4.50 12.577
  White Gary Finegan 5.25 12.301
  Blue Spencer Browne 6.00 12.564
  Yellow Daniel Sonsini 7.25 12.534
  Green James Woodgate 7.25 12.432
  Pink Paul Tancredi 8.50 12.488
  Black Leigh Phelan 10.00 12.515
  Red Devon Allen 1.00 12.473
  White Jacob Despard 4.50 12.214
  Blue Jack Newman 7.25 12.514
  Yellow Tim Eschebach 7.25 12.476
  Green Jarrod WHITTAKER 8.75 12.526
  Pink Jordan Tronnolone 9.75 12.478
  Black Bikramjeet Singh 10.00 12.539
  Red Matt Carter 4.00 12.455
  White Matthew Rizzo 4.50 12.287
  Blue Conor Loughnan 7.00 12.476
  Yellow Tom Newman 7.50 12.701
  Green Kevin Brittain 9.00 12.548
  Pink Matt Burleigh 9.75 12.482
  Black Rupert Lugo 10.00 12.502



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