National medal rewards for multi-talented duo
ATHLETICS: Two of Ipswich's most promising regional competitors have won national medals and motivated other athletes with their major successes.
Lockyer District club achiever Madison Wells won a silver medal and Ipswich District Athletic Club representative Kiara Condon collected a bronze at last weekend's Australian Multi-events championships in Melbourne.
Although some age groups had small fields, Wells excelled in a strong division featuring 14 competitors.
Wells totalled 4812 points from her seven under 17 events, an improvement by 226 points on her state titles performance.
Condon accumulated 3667 points in her under 15 heptathlon competition, bettering her previous Queensland championships effort by 160 points.
Respected Lockyer coach Bailey Pashley said Wells chose to direct all her training for the national heptathlon, forgoing individual events at the Australian Junior Championships in Sydney a fortnight ago.
"Madi has put in 100% commitment and dedication for her event during a long season which began last June with school events,'' Pashley said.
"It is now rest and recovery time for two months to refresh and cure any niggling injuries. Then it all begins again.''
Pashley said Wells' Lockyer club mates Annie McGuire, Hayley Reynolds, Caitlin Taylor and Aden Cowdroy are in the final peaking phase for their Sydney Nationals where they will line up in 10 events.
"They are overjoyed with Madi's result which, in turn, motivates them to do as well,'' Pashley said.
West Moreton Anglican College student Wells was in third place after the first day of competition with her best overall score for the first four events.
Her second day is usually her strong events in the long jump and especially her 800m.
With results on the board and with a good night's rest she believed if all went well she could hold a medal place at the end of competition.
Her second day started with her second best long jump, which moved her into second place with two events to go including her less favoured javelin throw.
"But she gave her best with her first two throws over 30 metres, which was a season best. Then she gave her all with the final throw which was a massive 36.41m,'' Pashley said.
"This consolidated her into the silver medal place and with the other Queenslander throwing the javelin below her best it would have had to be a record run in the final event the 800m for Madi to take the gold.''
To achieve that, Wells had to run an 800m time of under two minutes, 10 seconds or beat the leader by 19 seconds or about 120 metres.
"Madi led the field from the start having to hold off two strong challenges with 250m to go but Madi put the foot down around the final bend and held the lead. Although there were four other girls desperately chasing her, she had enough puff left to win by over two seconds,'' her coach said.
In all Wells posted one win (800m), two seconds (javelin and long jump), two thirds (hurdles, 200m), a fourth (shot put) and sixth (high jump).
Year 9 St Mary's College student Condon also produced a committed effort in Melbourne.
She set a personal best 2.47.97 in the finishing fourth in the 800m.
She won her high jump (1.48m) and shotput (9.91m) events.
In the other disciplines, Condon ran 15.39s in the 90m hurdles (coming second), ran 30.34s in the 200m (4th), reached 4.27m in the long jump (4th) and cast the javelin 26.88m (third).