Athletics : 2001
The 2001 season started as usual with McEvedy Shield. Having lost the shield in 1998 after a five year run of wins the team was determined to win its 3rd consecutive McEvedy Shield. St Patricks College Silverstream was expected to provide a very strong challenge. This was indeed the case with Rongotai and St Pats Town a considerable distance behind.
Silverstream started off strongly in the Junior 3000 metres but our sprinters and middle distance athletes ably assisted by the field athletes started to exert their dominance as the morning wore on and by lunchtime we had a reasonable lead. In the afternoon we extended the lead to win by 39.5 points from Silverstream.
The strongest events were the 100 metres and 1500 metres but we also won the 200 metres, relays, 800 metres, Shot Put, High Jump and Long Jump. The strongest age group was the Under 14 age group where Dylan Taylor-Edwards was the highest point scorer. Other athletes who were dominant were William Helu, Tama Makamaka and Selimoa Latuila.
National Secondary Schools Track and Field Championships
The Nationals in 2001 were held at Dunedinís new Caledonian Ground. A very small team of 11 athletes made the journey to Dunedin. For such a small team the results were very good.
The highlight of the meeting was a National Title and record to Richard Jones in the Senior Boyís 800 metres. The favourite for the event was Michael Stringer from Dargaville who earlier in the year had represented New Zealand at the World Under 18 Youth Championships. Stringer was expected to lead the race out in a quick time and impose his authority on the field from the beginning. He did exactly that, leading the field through the first 400 metres in a very fast time of 52 seconds. Richard tucked in behind and went through in a similarly fast 53.1 seconds and then showed a lot of courage when he swept past Stringer with 200 metres to go. Inevitably the very fast pace told in the final 50 metres and Richard held on desperately from a strong challenge by Tom Osborne of Wanganui Collegiate. Richardís New Zealand Secondary Schools Record of 1 minute 51.59 seconds was just reward for a very courageous race.
The Senior Boys 4 x 400 metres Relay Team of Tim Wheeler, Matthew Prosser, Edward Beable and Richard Jones narrowly held off a very strong Otago Boys Team to win for the second consecutive year in a very quick time of 3 minutes 23.4 seconds, just 1 second outside our own National Record.
The quiet achiever at the Nationals was Mark Tinkle who in recent weeks had made significant improvements to his personal best in the High Jump. At the Nationals he further improved his personal best to 1.84 metres and won the silver medal in the Junior Boys High Jump.