Athletics: World champ success for Otago javelin throwers

Holly Robinson
Holly Robinson
Otago javelin throwers Rory McSweeney and Holly Robinson boosted New Zealand's medal tally to four as the International Paralympic Committee world championships wrapped up in Doha yesterday.

McSweeney won silver in the T44 javelin, while Robinson snared bronze in the F46 javelin.

Their medals followed the efforts of fellow Otago athletes Jess Hamill and Anna Grimaldi last week, who won silver in the F34 shot put and bronze in the T47 long jump respectively.

McSweeney, who was competing in his third world championships, produced a monster 55.8m throw with his first attempt, 3.01m further than his previous personal best.

It gave him the lead after the first round, but Cape Verde athlete Marcio Fernandes threw 56.24m in the second round to hit the front.

Rory McSweeney
Rory McSweeney
McSweeney could not produce a winner, but managed to clear 53m with his remaining throws.

While it was a step back from the silver medal she won two years ago in France, Robinson produced a personal best throw of 38.18m on her way to bronze.

The Taieri athlete produced two fouls with her first three attempts, before producing her best effort with her fifth throw.

The six Otago athletes involved in Doha will now turn their focus to next year's Rio Olympics.

• Dunedin runner Mel Aitken finished fourth in the women's Auckland marathon yesterday, which doubled as the national championships.

Aitken clocked 2hr 55min 44sec in her first attempt at the Auckland race.

Wellington mother of three Katie Kemp blitzed the field to win in an impressive 2hr 42min 35sec.

Aaron Pulford (Thames) won the men's marathon in 2hr 27min 1sec, while Aucklander Malcolm Hicks (1hr 8min 30sec) and Cambridge's Camile Buscomb (1hr 16min 7sec) won the men's and women's half marathon respectively.

 Among other highlights from the track and field meet at the Caledonian Ground on Saturday:

Felix McDonald (17), of Taieri, won the men's 15 17 years 100m (11.47sec), 200m (22.78sec) and 400m (52.16sec).- Rory O'Neill (18), of Ariki, clocked the fastest 100m time (11.15sec) and 200m time (22.21sec) of the day.- Jonah Smith (21), of Caversham, won the men's 5000m in 16min 32sec- Hugh McLeod Jones (17), of Hill City University, won the 15 17 years discus (46.44m)- Oli Chignell (17), of Hill City University, won the men's 15 17 years 1500m in 4min 16.61sec, which was also the fastest time of the day.- Jessie Murphy (17), of Hill City University, won the women's 15 17 years 1500m in 5min 13.67sec.- Rosemary Stamm (28), of Hill City University, had the fastest women's 1500m time (5min 8.70sec) of the day.- Christina Ashton (18), of Taieri, won the 18 19 years 100m hurdles in 14.61sec and the 100m in 12.45sec


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