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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Essendon athletes make their mark at Vic titles

Essendon athletes make their mark at Vic titles

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Johnny Rayner

Athletics Essendon trio make their mark on state stage
Moonee Valley Leader
15 Mar, 2011

A TRIO of Athletics Essendon competitors will take part as newly crowned state champions at next month's IAAF World Athletics Championships selection trials.

Sprinters Aaron Rouge-Serret and Johnny Rayner (right) both powered to victory at the Victorian championships recently, as did middle-distance runner Amanda Paulin.

Commonwealth Games competitor Rouge-Serret clocked 10.33 seconds to win the men's 100-metre state championship, beating clubmate Adrian Mott (10.57 seconds).

Paulin won a closely contested finish in the women's 1500m run, her 4:25:74 time ensuring a win by two hundredths of a second.

Rayner also came up on the winning side of a narrow margin with his 1:51:24 time good enough to capture the 800m men's race.

The 19-year-old from Taylors Lakes shocked himself with the victory.

"My aim was to make the final, as there were over 70 entrants, so only one person from each heat made it through. I was always hoping to get a medal or to win the event, but it's still a surprise."

Rayner showed no signs of the hamstring injury that had derailed his training for the junior world titles in Canada last year.

"It was bitterly disappointing and hard to take at the time.

"I could've ran with injections and painkillers, but I've got to be smart, so I pulled out.

"It'll be really good to race the championships in Melbourne.

"The aim there will be to make the final with such a really strong field of runners at the moment."

Other Athletics Essendon competitors on the podium at the state championships included Danny Hawksworth (bronze, 5000m race walk), Stella McNamara (bronze, 400m hurdles), Andrew Boudrie (silver, 400m sprint) and Matthew Blair (silver, 110m hurdles).

The 89th Australian Open and selection trials for the IAAF World Athletics Championships will be held at Melbourne Olympic Park from April 15-17.

The main event will be in Daegu, Korea, from August 27-September 3.

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