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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Sprinting wonderkid Jack Hale will headline February's Ballarat Gift

Sprinting wonderkid Jack Hale will headline February's Ballarat Gift

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http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/2821257/sprinting-wonderkid-jack-hale-to-hit-ballarat/?cs=63

Sprinting wonderkid Jack Hale will headline February's Ballarat Gift

By  Pat Nolan
Ballarat Courier
Jan. 16, 2015


AUSTRALIAN sprinting wonderkid Jack Hale will compete in the Ballarat Gift.

Hale, 16, set the nation alight last year, shooting to fame as the fastest kid in Australia and sixth fastest youth athlete in the world.

Now, he will turn his attention to the Freight Bar & Restaurant Ballarat Gift on February 7 and 8.

Handicaps have not yet been released for the Ballarat Gift, but Hale is expected to be one of the back markers.

Ballarat Athletics Club president Alec Wiltshire said luring the famed Tasmanian to the gift was a massive coup for the event.

"We are really rapt to get a young talent like Jack across for the gift," Wiltshire said.

"It shows what a significant and prestigious event the Ballarat Gift is in that we can get such big names like Jack Hale across."

Hale became an athletics sensation in 2014, since crossing from his original passion in long jump.

He broke the Australian 100m under-18 record in September, but his biggest record was still to come.

In December he made headlines across the world when he ran a wind-assisted 10.13 seconds for 100m at the Australian All-Schools championships in Adelaide - the fastest youth time in the world for 2014.

"For a 16-year-old to run the times he is shows he is next big thing in Australian athletics," Wiltshire said.

Hale competed in the Bay Sheffield in Glenelg late last year where he was "devastated" to be knocked out in the semi finals, before being pipped at the post in the final of the Backmarkers Invitational at the Burnie Gift on New Year's Day.

The 120m Ballarat Gift boasts a prize pool of $16,000 in 2015.

Entries close on January 23, with late entries accepted until January 25.

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http://www.thecourier.com.au/story/2822736/tasmanian-wonder-runner-jack-hale-to-contest-ballarat-gift/?cs=63

Young wonder runner Jack Hale to contest Ballarat Gift

By PAT NOLAN


Jan. 16, 2015, 11 p.m.


AUSTRALIAN sprinting wonder kid Jack Hale says he will have to block out any pressure as he prepares for the Ballarat Gift next month.


Jack Hale, 16, hits the line in the Backmarkers Invitational at the Burnie Gift on New Year’s Day. PICTURE: STUART WILSON


Hale, 16, set the nation alight last year, shooting to fame as the fastest kid in Australia and sixth-fastest youth athlete in the world.

Now, he will turn his attention to claiming the Ballarat Gift on February 7 and 8.

Speaking to The Courier on Friday, the Tasmanian said he had weighed up competing in either the Canberra Track Classic or Ballarat.

In the end, the lure of being a backmarker and chasing down his opponents proved too strong.

“It’s always nice to have someone in front of you to chase down,” Hale said.

“I was looking at doing some mainland gift events for a few months – this is the perfect opportunity.”

Hale became an athletics sensation in 2014 after crossing from his original passion of long jump, in which he still competes.

He set an Australian 100-metres under-18 record in September, but his biggest record was still to come.

In December, he made headlines around the world when he ran a wind-assisted 10.13 seconds for 100 metres at the Australian All-Schools championships in Adelaide – the fastest youth time in the world for 2014. As a result, all eyes are now on him.

“The first few months after I broke the Australian record were pretty crazy,” he said.

“Now, I’ve got to learn to block out a lot of the pressure and the crowd and just worry about what I have to do.”

Ballarat Athletics Club president Alec Wiltshire said luring the Tasmanian to the Gift was a coup.

Handicaps have not yet been released for the Ballarat Gift, but Hale is expected to be one of the backmarkers.

“We are really rapt to get a young talent like Jack across for the Gift,” Wiltshire said.

“It shows what a significant and prestigious event the Ballarat Gift is when we can get such big names like Jack Hale across.”

Hale competed in the Bay Sheffield in Glenelg late last year, where he was “devastated” to be knocked out in the semi-finals, before being pipped at the post in the final of the Backmarkers Invitational at the Burnie Gift on New Year’s Day.

He said he was uncertain if he would compete in the Stawell Gift, meaning Ballarat could be his only gift run of the year.

The 2015 120-metre Ballarat Gift boasts a prize pool of $16,000.

Entries for all events close on January 23 with late entries accepted until January 25.

patrick.nolan@fairfaxmedia.com.au

http://protrack.easyforumlive.com

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