Changing of guard expected at Australian Mountain Running Championships

Australian Mountain Running Championships
Camp Mountain Brisbane
Sunday 29 May 2011

A changing of the guard is expected among the open men’s and women’s medallists at this Sunday’s Australian Mountain Running Championships on Camp Mountain in Brisbane.

Scott McTaggart, who has dominated the Australian men’s Championship for several years is taking a year off mountain running to focus on marathon running and 2010 runner-up Stephen Brown is out of action with an injury while bronze medallist Adam Byles is overseas. This leaves the way open for several contenders:

  • Former Australian champion Mark Bourne of the ACT making a comeback from a long lay-off with injury, 32nd in the World Mountain Running Championship in 2007 and 9th and 12th in WMRA Grand Prix races in 2008
  • 8-time World Mountain Running Championships representative David Osmond of the ACT
  • Great Volcanic Challenge champion Robin Whitely of NSW, a 30 minute 10k runner
  • Nicholas Wightman of Victoria, 3-time finalist in the mile at the Stawell Gift and Victorian cross country rep
  • Jordan Harries, Tasmanian mountain running and 10km champion
  • Dani Andres of NSW, top ten at the World triathlon and duathlon championships, national duathlon champion, 3rd place Sydney tower run, Sydney MS winner 2009

Former Australian champion Jessamy Hosking is out of action and there are five strong contenders for the 2011 Australian women’s title:

  • 2010 champion Vanessa Haverd of the ACT, who will be stepping off the plane on Sunday morning after an international flight to get to the start line
  • ACT champion Elizabeth Humphries who has been the ACT’s most improved runner in 2011
  • Kate Siebold-Crosbie of Victoria, 2009 Australian mountain running representative, who had a big win in the Two Bays trail run earlier in the year
  • Lucy Blaber of QLD, 2009 Brisbane Marathon winner and representing Australia in the 2011 World Long Distance Mountain Running Championship in Slovenia next month after a top run in the 2011 Six Foot Track
  • Clare Durrant of QLD, 5th in the Senshu International marathon in Osaka Japan in Feb 2011
  • Hubertien Wichers, former Australian mountain running champion and Australia representative

The Junior Men’s Championship has a very good field:

  • David Bayley, Victoria, a commanding 3 minute winner of the 2010 Australian Junior Men’s Championship, 35th in the World Junior Mountain Running Championship
  • Ben Duffus of QLD, 2nd in 2010 Australian Junior Mountain Running Championship and 54th in the World Championship
  • Patrick Hagan, QLD all schools cross country and junior steeplechase champion
  • Ben Cook of QLD, 2010 Australian U16 triathlon champion
  • Andrew Reddie of Victoria, 2009 U18 Victorian 1500m champion
  • Dane Bird-Smith of QLD, 10km race walk national U20 champion 3 years in a row, 5th world junior championships 10km, 8th world youth championships 10km

The junior women’s field is headed by Bronwyn Humphrys of Victoria, 13th in the 2010 World Junior Mountain Running Championship and also includes

  • Rosie Donegan of Victoria, 39th in the 2010 World Junior Mountain Running Championship
  • Miriam Smith of QLD, 4th in the 2009 World Junior Triathlon Championships, a member of previous QLD school sport cross country, athletics and triathlon teams. Medalled at nationals in school sport triathlon.
  • Sarah Deuble, QLD, 2008 Qld Secondary School Cross Country Champion, 1st 2011 Under 20 QLD 1500m, member of Qld Cross Country Team at Nationals since 2005