Posted by Hopwood Wendy
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.
AUSTRALIA POST WOMEN’S GIFT SEMI FINALS
STAWELL ATHLETIC CLUB STAWELL GIFT SEMI FINALS
|Semi||Lane Colour||Athlete||Handicap||Heat Time|
Posted by Hopwood Wendy
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