The Illawarra Track Challenge to be held on Saturday at the Kerryn McCann Athletic Centre will not only feature the usual State Titles for the Open men and women over 60 metres, but this year an added bonus will see some of the State junior athletes also compete for a State title. Athletics NSW has incorporated the State title now for U14, U16, U18 and U20 athletes, and this is expected to draw some of the State leading talent to the local track. Held in conjunction with local club Illawarra Blue Stars, the Track Challenge has proven to be a highlight of the local athletic scene and is contested by athletes from all over the State.
The highlight is the short, fast and quick 60 metres and local product, running for Illawong, Abbie Taddeo will try for her 7th State title over this distance. Taddeo has been a regular contender of this event and only missed last year’s event due to Athletics Australia commitments. She will be pushed as a high quality field is expected. Defending men’s champion, Campbelltown’s Anas Abu-Ganaba, will again be a hard man to beat as he is known for his quick, fast start. Sponsored by Kirraweee Prestige Smash Repairs and Kings Sports, the event carries cash prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd in both men and women, and a cash prize will also be given to the fastest IBS male and female.
To commence at 4.45 pm with the women’s 60 metres followed by the men’s, the Challenge will go into the evening under lights with another highlight being the State’s men’s and women’s Bing Lee Mile. Again a State title, last year’s events over the mile were a highlight and this years is expected to be the same. The mile is now becoming a favourite for the middle distance athletes and this has been shown with not only a State title here in Wollongong but also now is an Australian title held recently.
Supporting events for the program include the Masters 60 metres which has always provided top line competition. Other events to attract will be the added event for pole-vaulters, long jump, 100 metres, 3km and the hammer. The women’s hammer will see talented thrower Alex Hulley in action, silver medallist at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. She competed last year to meet the standard required, and a big throw from this talented athlete is expected.
Spectators will be treated to a short program of non-stop action, and with free admission, the day/evening meet is expected to draw a large crowd.
Click here for the draft program of events