South Australian Kim Mottrom has taken out the 2013 men’s
Australian 50km Race Walking Championship at Fawkner Park in Melbourne
this morning in his first-ever attempt at the distance.
Mottrom, who had never raced at longer than 30km before, crossed the
finish line after his gruelling 50km journey in a time of 4:28:12 to
clinch the first national title of his career.
The 29-year-old South Australian had medalled four times previously
at the junior level over the 10km and 20km distances, but had never
managed to break through for a gold. Mottrom looked destined to stand below the top dais once again today with Ian Rayson of New South Wales holding a seemingly insurmountable lead over him deep into the race.
At the 20km mark, Rayson registered a split of 1:37:24 to hold a lead of almost eight minutes on Mottrom (1.45.10).
Rayson was disqualified by the race officials however after receiving
his third and final warning after the 35km mark. That left Mottrom, the
only other member of the two-person field for the men’s 50km race, to
walk solo for the rest of the distance and take the win.
“It’s nice to win my first national title in my first 50km race,” Mottrom said after winning gold.
“I was hoping to go under 4:30 and probably with about 5km to go I
wasn’t sure but the last three km I really picked it up and was really
happy to do 4:28.”
Mottrom was lucky even to make it to the start line as a hamstring
injury had threatened to derail his first attempt at the longer
“I injured it about seven weeks ago and have been in physio every week. Unfortunately
this Monday I kind of woke up and the sciatic nerve was trapped and we
haven’t been able to release it all week and it’s just been taped up. I’ve done the best I can with a trapped nerve, so I’m really happy. I could have done much worse than I did today.”
After winning today’s race, which was also the official Selection
Trial for the IAAF World Race Walking Cup to be held in Taicang, China
on 3-4 May 2014, Mottrom now plans to compete at the Australian 20km
Race Walking Championships in Hobart on 2 February next year.
Although it wasn’t an Australian championship event, the men’s 20km
invitational race walk at Fawkner Park this morning also grabbed plenty
of attention. Participants included a duo of Australian Flame team
representatives from the 2013 IAAF Word Championships held earlier this
year in Moscow in Jared Tallent (SA) and Chris Erickson (VIC).
It was however 2011 Australian Universiade team member Brendon Reading of the ACT who challenged Tallent throughout the race. The pair battled it out with neither able to establish a decisive edge over the other as the lead changed hands several times. At the 12km mark, the pair couldn’t be split, both registering 51.41 on the clock.
When however Tallent was forced to take a comfort stop to answer a
call of nature shortly after, Reading powered away to a solid lead. By the time Tallent had re-entered the race, he was in third position behind Reading and Erickson.
Tallent showed his class by slowly chipping away at the leaders and
managed to pass Erickson, who later was forced to withdraw from the
race. The gap to Reading was simply too far for even
Tallent to bridge however and when Reading got the bell with 2km left to
race, he still had a 45-second lead.
Reading crossed the finish line to win the 20km race in 1:26:29, with Talent second in 1:27:23 and Nick Dewar of Queensland third in 1:31:21.
Tallent said after the race that he was happy with his form despite the unanticipated pitstop he was forced to take.
“I was happy with my progress, my hamstring is a lot better,” Tallent said. “I had a recent injury after the World Championships so that’s feeling good now. I’m really excited just to get back into training and looking forward to the rest of the domestic season.”
The women’s 20km invitational race walk was taken out by visiting international Mari Olsson of Sweden in 1:39:34 2, with Lauren Bourke of NSW the first Australian in 1:42:25.
In the women’s 10km Under 20 invitational walk, three athletes
bettered the junior qualifying time for the 2014 World Race Walking Cup. Tayla-Paige Billington (VIC,) won in 49:08. 2, while Jemima Montag of Victoria (49:22. 3) and Elizabeth Hosking of the ACT (49:43) both also went under the 50:00:00 entry standard.
In winning the men’s 10km Under 20 invitational walk in 42:16 today, Jesse Osborne
of Victoria also easily surpassed the 46:30.00 junior qualification
standard for the 2014 World Race Walking Cup as did second-place getter
and fellow Victorian Nathan Brill (43:43). 15-year-old Tyler Jones of NSW was also outstanding as he finished in third place in 44:47. Fourth-placed Jay Felton of NSW also bettered the junior World Race Walking Cup qualification standard by finishing in 45:21.
Australian 50km Road Walking Championships - 15/12/2013
Fawkner Park, Melbourne
Men 50km Race Walk Australian Championship
1. Kim Mottrom, SA, 4:28:12. --, Ian Rayson, NSW, DQ.
Women 20km Race Walk Invitation
1, Mari Olsson, SWE, 1:39:34 2, Lauren Bourke, NSW,
1:42:25. 3, Jillian Hosking, ACT, 1:44:53. 4, Shannon Jennings, NSW,
1:45:25. 5, Kirsty Klein, NSW, 1:49:15. --, Erin Taylor-Talcott, USA,
DNF. --, Cheryl Webb, NSW, DNF. --, Stephanie Stigwood, TAS, DNF. --, Rachel Tallent, VIC, DNF. --, Jessica Pickles, QLD, DQ.
Women 10km Race Walk Invitation Under 20
1, Tayla-paige Billington, VIC, 49:08. 2, Jemima
Montag, VIC, 49:22. 3, Elizabeth Hosking, ACT, 49:43. 4, Jasmine
Dighton, NSW, 52:06. --, Jemma Potezny, SA, DNF. --, Stephanie George,
Women 5km Race Walk Invitation Under 18
1, Emily Hamilton, VIC, 29:12.
Men 20km Race Walk Invitation
1, Brendon Reading, ACT, 1:26:29. 2, Jared Tallent, SA,
1:27:23. 3, Nick Dewar, QLD, 1:31:21. 4, Kyle Malone, NSW, 1:31:36. 5,
Simon Evans, VIC, 1:52:18. 6, Jason Kozica, VIC, 1:59:10. --, Chris
Erickson, VIC, DNF.
Men 10km Race Walk Invitation Under 20
1, Jesse Osborne, VIC, 42:16. 2, Nathan Brill, VIC,
43:43. 3, Tyler Jones, NSW, 44:47. 4, Jay Felton, NSW, 45:21. 5, Carl
Gibbons, NSW, 48:02. 6, Adam Garganis, VIC, 48:06. 7, Kyle Bird, VIC,
Men 5km Race Walk Invitation Under 18
1, Dylan Richardson, NSW, 25:19. 2, Lucas Taylor, VIC, 27:14.