Jack believes Nick Fiedler can make it three in a row

Date: 20th March 2023

Saturday’s Shepparton Gift winner Jack Lacey thinks coach of the last two Powercor Stawell Gift winners, Nick Fiedler, can pull off the hat-trick.

“I do believe that Nick can get the Stawell win this year and make it three in a row, but it’s been a competitive season and a lot of athletes are putting their best foot forward. It would be an incredible feat if we can get this pulled off for him but only time will tell,” said Jack.

Jack says he has been hitting his targets and it’s all coming together at the business end of the season. After his victory at Shepparton, he told us his handicap will make him competitive and give him the confidence to perform at his best. 

“Stawell for me is such a special Gift, as it is for all athletes. I’ve been going there since I was about 8 or 9 years old when my brother Max Lacey started competing and eventually winning the 400m novice and the 400m Backmarkers in 2009. 

“Ever since that day I knew I wanted to compete and eventually win anything I could at Stawell.  Fast forward a few years and seeing my teammates succeed in the Stawell Gift final has only inspired me more.”

Team Fiedler is part of Athletics Ringwood Inc and is the stable which produced Powercor Stawell Gift winners Ed Ware in 2021 and Harrison Kerr in 2022.

“My squad is amazing. I couldn’t ask for a better crew to train with. We have a variety of distances and strengths in this squad, which helps us support each other and improve different elements of our races, whether that be speed endurance, top speed, lactic threshold or getting out of the blocks. 

“Having Harrison Kerr train closely with us has also helped the development of all the Fiedler athletes this year, including Antonino, Mitchell, Lugo, myself and many others – not just technically, but showing us that our dreams of the Stawell win can become a reality with the right training and mindset. Our squad is so welcoming to all athletes, or even just people looking to join athletics and enjoy themselves. 

“Nick Fiedler, I don’t know how he does it! He can make you believe you can do anything you set your mind to. He knows the potential you have before you see or believe it yourself. I never saw myself to be able to potentially make a Stawell Gift final, but over the years he’s started to convince me.

“Just to make a final at Stawell would feel like such an incredible achievement, let alone winning. Personally, winning the Stawell Gift final would be such an affirmation of my training and abilities. Hopefully I get the chance to join the other incredible athletes in the history books,” said Jack.

Jack thinks there are many runners shaping up as major contenders for Stawell this year.  

“Most of them were runners that I couldn’t beat earlier in the year, but I have improved a lot during the competitive season, and I hope that I have closed that gap they had on me.  I think Dunmall and Morris had the most impressive runs so far this season and I have also liked the runs of Vaitohi, Mekonnen, Ilett, and Antonino. 

“Additionally, I think the form of (NZ legend Eddie) Nketia is very impressive after his 10.16s run at the Sydney track classic a couple of weeks back, which makes him look stronger than the form presented at last year’s Gift with his super impressive runs off scratch. 

“Realistically though there are over 150+ athletes that show up from all over the country to compete which makes it anyone’s game, and whoever can execute perfectly on the day will be able to take the win.”

The 25-year-old lives in Blackburn and works in book distribution. As well as running and competing, he loves the footy and “after some hard years as a Collingwood supporter, we are finally started to be competitive.” 

“I also love going fishing and camping when I have the chance, as a little break from training and life.”


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