Aaron (left) and Bradley Tarleton at Taieri College. Photo
by Gregor Richardson.
It was inevitable. As soon as Bradley Tarleton was
coached by Raylene Bates for the shot put, it was certain he
would soon be throwing the hammer as well.
It worked for Tarleton when he won his first New Zealand
title in the youth under-18 hammer throw title in Wellington
He also dominated the secondary schools championships in the
event and won the Otago, Otago-Southland and South Island
senior boys titles.
He smashed the records at the Otago (52.55m) and
Otago-Southland (49.18m) meets.
Bates is one of the best hammer throw coaches in New Zealand
and encourages members of her throwing squad to try the
''Raylene's helped me a lot. She knows her stuff. The hammer
throw is a technical event and I couldn't have done it
without her,'' Tarleton said.
Bates has one of the best throwing squads in the country and
New Zealand champions pop up all the time.
''It makes you want to perform because people around you are
His aim is to win the New Zealand secondary schools senior
boys hammer throw title in December, and to represent New
Zealand at the Oceania championships next year.
In November last year, his best distance was 50.03m. Just
four months later, he improved by 3m when he won the national
youth title with a personal best 53.04m in Wellington.
''There was a hammer festival in Dunedin and the best coaches
in New Zealand were there and gave me a few pointers,'' he
''They told me to stay low in the circle.''
Aaron (14) Bradley followed his big brother into the hammer
throw and won the boys under-15 titles at the Otago,
Otago-Southland and South Island secondary schools
He broke the record at the Otago-Southland event by a massive
11m with his throw of 35.80m.
''Bradley did it, so I went along to the training as well,''
''It's fun and I like challenging and pushing myself.''
He admitted that it was a bit scary at first ''spinning round
with a metal rod with a ball on the end of it.''
He had a few problems to overcome before he mastered the
''I'm small and the hammer is big. It's hard for me to throw
it far. It often puts me off balance.''
His best throw with the 4kg implement is 38.40m.
Aaron enjoys competing and training with his big brother.
''It's pretty good. He keeps me in my place. I want to beat
him and push myself harder.''
The Bradley brothers are small, compared with the bigger
Pacific Island pupils they will compete against at the
national secondary schools championships in December.
Boys of the same age will be 20kg to 30kg heavier.
The challenge for the Tarleton brothers is to train harder
and smarter and be more technically skilled.
Names: Aaron (14) and Bradley (17) Tarleton.
School: Taieri College.
Bradley: NZ under-18 youth hammer throw champion,
third in under-20, Otago secondary schools senior boys
champion (record 52.55m), Otago-Southland secondary schools
champion (record 49.18m), South Island secondary schools
Aaron: Otago secondary schools under-15 hammer throw
champion 2014, Otago-Southland secondary schools champion
(record 35.80m), South Island secondary schools champion.