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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Tas. Xmas Carnivals

Tas. Xmas Carnivals

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1 Tas. Xmas Carnivals on Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:26 pm

JH

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Elite on way to carnivals Save
Oct. 30, 2012, 1 a.m.

A HOST of Olympians look set to line up in this year's Basslink Christmas Carnival Series.
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But, London golden girl Sally Pearson is unlikely to be among them.

Sports Carnivals Association of Tasmania elite athlete co-ordinator Rod Walker confirmed yesterday three of the country's top running stables were sending athletes to the carnivals.

This includes Matt Beckenham's star-studded stable, which boasts names such as Brendan Cole, Lauren Boden and Melissa Breen.

Cole won the Burnie Gift on New Year's Day this year before making the 400 metres hurdles semi-finals in London, while Boden finished second in last year's Devonport Women's Gift in the lead-up to her Olympic debut.

Pearson, Australia's only gold medallist on the track in London, is a less likely proposition.

"I'm about 90 per cent certain she won't come," Walker said.

"You never say never, we might be able to pull something out of the hat, but at this stage it is unlikely."

SCAT expressed an interest in luring Pearson to Tasmania in the immediate aftermath of her Olympic triumph. It is believed the appearance fee for the champion hurdler is the major obstacle.

"I have been told she is out of our financial reach," Walker said.

"She is a professional athlete and needs to make a living so we don't begrudge her.

"I have spoken to her coach a few times and they have never said no, so it's not completely ruled out."

Joining Beckenham's Canberra-based stable at the carnivals will be athletes prepared by John Henry and former Burnie Gift winner Mark Hipworth.

Henry was named national trainer of the year for 2010-11, with athletes such as former national sprinter of the year Matt Hargreaves on his books.
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The mainland raiders will have stiff competition from a crop of "quality" Tasmanians.

"There is a bit of a problem with the quantity of runners in the state at the moment, but certainly not the quality," Walker said.

"The Latrobe Gift might have six heats, but they will be classy heats."

2 Re: Tas. Xmas Carnivals on Tue Nov 13, 2012 7:39 am

JH

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Henry's stable to target big races Save
By TERRY MORRIS
Nov. 13, 2012, 1 a.m.

ASTUTE Victorian running trainer John Henry will again target the major races at the Christmas carnivals after announcing his line-up to come to Tasmania.


Victorian sprinter of the year Matt Hargreaves and Burnie Gift winner Laura-Jane Hilditch head his list of athletes as they attempt to build on an already impressive record at the carnivals.

"We have been able to win the Latrobe Gift three years in a row and took the Burnie Gift on our last visit," the Altona-based coach said.

"Last year we won $37,000 in prizemoney, and we're prepared to go wherever the big races are held."

Henry ran at the carnivals during the 1960 and 1970s and since turning to coaching has brought runners to Tasmania in five of the past six years.

Matt Hargreaves has been one of the stable's leading lights, winning his first classic race in the Latrobe Gift in 2007, and he has been judged Victorian sprinter of the year for four of the past five years.

His younger brothers Chris and Shaun are part of the Henry line- up, along with Hilditch and her father John and 400-metre runner Rhyce Parkinson.

Hilditch claimed the 2012 Burnie Gift when she beat Olympian Melissa Breen and Latrobe Gift winner Carmen Oakley to complete a unique family double on New Year's Day.

Earlier her father, John, 50, had beaten local runner Edward Gates in the Burnie 90m handicap.


Hilditch said she enjoyed the atmosphere of the Burnie carnival.

Chris Hargreaves was third behind Robinson and his brother in the Latrobe Gift and also ran third in the backmarkers sprint at Burnie behind Joshua Ross.

Shaun Hargreaves showed he was a sprinter of the future by making the Stawell Gift final on Easter Monday before finishing fourth to Matthew Wiltshire.

Parkinson made the final of the 400m at Latrobe and is considered a middle- distance runner of the future.


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