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PROTRACK » GENERAL » 33rd Messenger Community News 400m Camden Classic form guide

33rd Messenger Community News 400m Camden Classic form guide

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Colin Rowston

Ashley Brown Handicap 30
Has run a lot with the League this season without bringing the house down results-wise. However he wasn’t far off in his heat last year, running 3rd behind David Palmer and Alex Saliu. Didn’t feature at both Tea Tree Gully and Marion recently so he doesn’t seem to be in the same form as he was in 12 months ago. If he can find his best, he would be right in the mix but it would be a surprise to see him feature this time around.

Alex Bubner Handicap 8m
A placegetter in the 2007 Bay Sheffield who has a PB for 200m of 21.38secs and a 400m PB of 47.04secs. Starting to run more frequently lately after a couple of injury-riddled seasons. Enters this event fresh from his sensational run off the backmark to win the 300m recently at Marion. Running off a tight mark, he’ll run hard as always and has class on his side. One to watch.

Sam Chalmers Handicap 20m
Young runner training with Debbie Meech out at Western Districts. Has a PB of 52.11 over 400m recorded just last month but with competition always strong for this event, we wont be expecting miracles from this young lad. In this for the experience!

James Cibich Handicap 20m
Broke through for his best result in his young career when he held on for 3rd in the Bay Sheffield. Has followed that up with a podium in the Tea Tree Gully 200m and has a handicap that can be very dangerous here. Showed he can run a good race around the circle track by sensationally winning the 300m Novice at Port Adelaide at the start of the season. Won the 120m here last year, and has improved again since then. Looks to be a good chance!

Hayden Cook Handicap 23m
Was 2nd in this final in 2005 and 4th in 2008 (47.71 off 22m). Has had serious injury issues since. Rumour has it this will be the final race in his career. A classy runner at his best who will keen to put in a good showing.

Matthew Cousins Handicap 33m
A handy runner over this distance, he will be looking to go better than last year where he was 4th in his heat. Having said that, he did run against Palmer and Saliu who went on to win the Classic and Consolation respectively. Won this prestigious race back in 2005, but it will take a monumental effort to repeat that feat this year. Won’t be far away.

Jarrad Dartnall Handicap 32m
Was the red-hot favourite for this race last year after cruising around in the quickest heat time of the day (47.62 off 36m) but he didn’t shape up in the final. Hasn’t shown anywhere near that type of form so far this season, most noticeably at Marion where he failed to get out of his 300m heat. On his day he can mix it with the best, but it would be a shock to punters to see him take this out.

Craig Foley Handicap 36
Has run with the Victorian Athletic League for many years with his biggest win of late coming at Rye last season where he took out the 400m (48.47 off 38m). Is a great competitor over short distances aswell, but seems to have drawn the short straw with a jam-packed heat. Rumour has it he has recent injury concerns so is a likely scratching but if he shows, it is an indication he means business.

Nicholas Giles Handicap 24
Still a novice when it comes to this distance, and this marks his first appearance in the Camden Classic. Still a junior athlete so has a pre-season or two to go before he challenges for top honours here. Smaller events is his go at this stage.

David Girolamo Handicap 36
After his Bay Sheffield campaign, he travelled over the border to take out the 400m Ringwood final in a slick 45.8secs off 50m. Then returned to SA to make the 300m final at Marion. Consistently competes with the league and hopefully that can pay off with a good performance today. Has come back in the marks but has a wide open heat, so it’s not out of the question.

Ryan Hage Handicap 33m
Has struck some form of late after his 800m/1000m Novice double triumph at Tea Tree Gully. Made the consolation final last year but has unfortunately hit an injury hurdle of late which explains his scratching at Marion so it is expected he’s going to be a scratching here as well. Well placed at his best in this.

Matthew Hargreaves Handicap 10
The winner of the Camden Classic in 2009 where he got up to claim this coveted prize with a classy performance. Has decided to remain in Victoria this weekend so is a scratching but has promised to be back next year.

Adrian Harris Handicap 29
Better known for his feats over 200m and 300m but is travelling well, making the 300m at Marion. Would have been hoping for an easier heat, but will give everything no matter what. Expect him to set a good pace and hope to hold on.

Mark Howard Handicap 36
The Victorian Athletic League administrator who also coaches a number of handy runners. Won a Bendigo 400m at his peak so can run but is a confirmed scratching this time.

Brad Jones Handicap 33
Coming of age this year which was demonstrated when he claimed the biggest win of his short career in the Bay Sheffield 800m. Ran well at Tea Tree Gully and this distance will suit him more, so he will quietly like his chances. Will give them something hard to chase.

Robert Keenan Handicap 35
A handy Victorian athlete who ran a mighty race to finish 6th in the final last year when trained with John Henry. Has since changed coaches to Mark Hipworth and is reportedly in better shape this year. Looks well placed and is one of the favourites. Yes.

Kostya Khudoshin Handicap 25
Super 400m/800m runner with the League for a number of years now, winning the Whyalla 800m earlier this season before just missing the podium in the Bay Sheffield 550m. Was 5th last year (48.81 off 25m) in a blanket finish. Isn’t too far off his best and looms as one of the major contenders.

Robert Killmier Handicap 25
An absolute top line athlete when it comes to distance running in this state who has collected numerous sashes ranging from 400m and beyond. Was in-form when he ran 2nd in his heat and 7th in the consolation here last year. Recently found out he has fractured his neck so you can safely put a line through his name for this race.

Bradley Letton Handicap 33
Straying out of his comfort zone for this one, after seeing him do most of his work on the straight track. Has never troubled the scorers on the round track at Camden, and after an average performance at Marion, he would need a minor miracle to step atop the podium here.

Harry May Handicap 20
Western Districts athlete who has a 400m personal best of 49.83 set last month. Under the right guidance, this young sprinter has the potential to create big inroads into South Australian athletics. Won the Bay Sheffield 800m Under 20s race and will be closely watched here. Sure to be a top contender for many years to come and might do OK this year.

Jakson Messent Handicap 27
Junior athlete trained by Frank Mchugh who recently made the Under 20’s 120m at Marion. Made the final of the Under 17’s 400m here last year off the same mark but the time suggests he is in this for the experience. Has talent but needs it weaker at this stage.

Aaron Neale Handicap 24
Anthony Tohl trained athlete who hasn’t set the world alight with his performances of late. His latest result at Marion suggest he may need a little more of a handicap if he wants to be competitive here.

Michael Nitschke Handicap 24
A former winner of the Mt Gambier 400m Open who was backed into outright favouritism for the 2011 Bay Sheffield 550m after running the fastest heat but didn’t make the podium. Can put that disappointing result behind him with a good showing in this, and with his current handicap, all he needs to do is bring his heat form from Colley Reserve and he will be right in it. Don’t rule him out.

Sam Osmond Handicap 21
Created history when he surged home off the back mark to win the inaugural Junior Bay Sheffield Title last December. Was 3rd recently in the Marion 300m behind Bubner and Tohl who come into this event as two of the favourites. Will be a huge effort if he can make this final but is certainly capable. Has all the makings of a future Camden Classic winner and should have his hopes on at least making the final this year.

David Palmer Handicap 30
Was a very popular winner of this event last year when he held off the fast finishes to claim a memorable victory (48.13 off 36m). Is well back from that mark but has plenty of grit and determination so back to back finals appearances is not out of the question. Maybe.

James Ralston Handicap 28
SANFL League umpire who won the Umpires Race at this Carnival previously. Is enjoying his first season with the League and has certainly not disgraced himself. His handicap is yet to allow him to be truly competitive so he will have hopes of breaking through for a novice win before he seriously contemplates something of this nature. Making up the numbers this year.

Callum Ritchie Handicap 27
Young athlete who competes mostly in the under 20’s events. Still learning the trade and will be in this for the experience.

Christopher Ross Handicap 30
The 2010 Bay Sheffield 550m and 800m winner who hasn’t been seen in the same shape recently. Likely to need longer even if he was in PB shape but he won’t disgrace himself. An outsider.

Kane Russell Handicap 21
Talented young athlete who is used to competing off tight marks in junior races. This appears to be a perfect distance for him and should fancy his chances against the big boys. Each way.

Eric Sapac Handicap 24
Victorian who came over and made the podium here in 2010 (48.23 off 24m). Is rumoured to be injured and might not be making the trip over, but if he does, he’ll be giving it his all!

Brad Schutz Handicap 40
Winner of the Whyalla 300m in a year which has seen him looking in PB shape. Wasn’t too far off eventual winner Tronnolone in his 200m heat at Tea Tree Gully and will definantly look to go better than his 5th place heat finish last year. Enjoying a great year and will be mighty hard to catch. Go well.

Christopher Simpson Handicap 35
Last ran in this race back in 2010 where he didn’t get past his heat. Scratched from both Tea Tree Gully and Marion. Needs to run regularly if he wishes to be apart of the action in these types of events. Not expected to trouble the scorers.

Jarrod Sims Handicap 15
National champion decathlete who has a PB of 48.03s over 400m. Runs sparingly with the League, but has picked up the odd sash over the short distances. Made this final last year and if he’s in his personal best form, he should be all over this. Definite contender.

Jake Stangewitz Handicap 27
Quietly going about his business, with a placing in the 2011 Bay Sheffield 550m final his best effort to date. Is never too far off the pace over these distances which was typified when he just missed the podium in the 300m at Marion. If he makes the final, he will have no problem finding the energy he needs to win the biggest race of his life. Has that look about him. Might surprise!

Jack Sutton Handicap 30m
A junior South Adelaide footballer who is running under the wing of Frank McHugh. Has enjoyed a reasonable season so far without winning. Will no doubt love the run around his home track, but will have more of a chance in the Under 20’s 120m.

Paul Taylor Handicap 31
More known for his work over shorter distances which was on display at Tea Tree Gully where he snuck home to win the 70m. Ran at Marion, but not in the 300m which casts doubts over whether he can run out this distance well. We’ve seen a number of frontmarkers do well here in the past and he will hope that trend continues.

Damian Tohl Handicap 24
Comes into this event as the pre race favourite, based simply on his performances in the past. Has made this final numerous times already and will look to go on with it this year and claim the most prestigious 400m in the state. Was 4th last year behind Palmer (48.65 off 24m). 2nd recently at Marion over 300m so he looks set to join Frank McHugh by winning the Bay Sheffield and Camden Classic double. The favourite.

Bryce Watkins Handicap 15
If there is an athlete to trouble Tohl in his quest for glory, it looks to be this super talented young man. Looking to rival his brother Clay’s marvellous athletics record, he has won the 800m and more recently the 550m Open races at the Bay Sheffield Carnival. Loomed up in the final here last year when he ran a gutsy 3rd (48.46 off 20m). Due to recent successes (which also included a win over this distance in Mt Gambier) he is 5 metres back in his handicap but his significant improvement suggests that won’t deter him. He can do it.

Troy Welfare Handicap 35
Will more than likely be the sole athlete flying the flag for Paul Young and the Young Guns here. Will look to improve on his efforts from last year where he was fortunate enough to make the consolation final before finishing 8th (51.75 off 30m). Has certainly improved since then, how much remains to be seen. It is a tough assignment for him but he will give a good account for himself.

Riordan Welsh Handicap 26
A junior who ran impressively to win the Under 20’s 200m at Tea Tree Gully. Backed up that performance to make the final recently at Marion where he finished 7th in the final. Was 4th in his heat last year and there’s no doubt he can run. He’s up against the cream of the crop so it will take a big effort to make the final. Not the worst.

Benjamin Wever Handicap 26
Speedy teenager who was extremely unlucky not to make the Under 17’s 400m final here last year, finshing 3rd in his heat with the two athletes going on two claim 1st and 2nd in the final. Trying his luck in the big race this year and should equip himself well without being a winning chance.

Ben Wright Handicap 26
Comes in his Camden campaign under a slight injury cloud after his scratching from the Marion 300m. Has run well here in the past, most noticeably in 2009 where he produced a stunning effort to hold on for 3rd (48.16 off 26m). Was 2nd in 2007 as well behind Wallace Long-Scafidi when he was extremely unlucky not to win. A repeat of those efforts would surprise but this track does seem to bring the best out of him.


ProTrack Star
ProTrack Star
Tips for classic final:



ProTrack Star
ProTrack Star
Stangewitz 1st
Tohl 2nd
Watkins 3rd

Nothing at all

ProTrack Star
ProTrack Star
Tohl if he is fit, Cibich will be around the mark coz he's got some guts and will slug it out.


Remember only heat winners through guys so Khudoshin and Stangewitz cant both make the final.

My tips to make the final
Bubner just!!

Winner = Watkins
Runner Up = Tohl


Conditions have changed - according to the program, the next two fastest also advance.

The program reads:


They've gone from having a few years of 7 heats with heat winners only to having two non-heat winners in the final from 6 heats.

Personally I think it's an ill-conceived idea because now they have to ensure that the first three in each heat are accurately timed AND ensure every athlete in every heat is timed as accurately as possible due to the change in conditions for the consolation.

My personal view was to stick with a recent tradition of having 7 in the final. That would have made the 6 heat winners and the fastest 2nd.

The consolation could then be the 2nd place in each heat PLUS the 3rd place from the heat in which the fastest loser advances to the Classic final.

Lot less pressure on the timers to only have to ensure the fastest 2nd goes through.

In my view, in comparison to recent years, the standard of the field this year does not warrant an 'extra finalist'.

"Let's Go While We're Young"


ProTrack Star
ProTrack Star
So after the winners of the heats we need the next 10 fastest, all I can say is REXY better have an early night Sat night.
This years feild lacks quantity and quality.Maybe a Sat evening Classic with an AFTER PARTY at the Highway INN Sat night.Maybe an injection of $$$$$$$$$. Just starting to lose its glitter especially from interstate where they race for a good purse most weeks.
Prestige can go so far and I think these boys will go close come Sun







Think this will be out of Tohl and Watkins

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