Tori Peeters pulled off an excellent demonstration of Kiwi sporting excellence at the Porritt Classic last Saturday, beating her nearest rival by 11cm in the javelin throw.
The Cambridge local, originally from Gore, is generally accustomed to finishing first at local meets as the holder of the New Zealand record for the longest women’s javelin throw. But this time a visiting Japanese competitor, with a greater personal best (PB) by over 2.2 metres, put her throw to the ultimate test.
“I was a little nervous heading into the last throw, because on paper her PB is 59 metres, so you never know what might happen,” Tori explained.
But luckily for Tori, the final effort by Yuka Mori didn’t quite go as planned, allowing the Kiwi to take the win with a 54.91m throw.
“I was pretty happy,” said Tori, who led the women’s competition throughout. “It was awesome to have those international throwers here and actually compete against them, when they come all the way to New Zealand you’ve got to make the most of it.”
For Ben Langton-Burnell, New Zealand’s number one men’s javelin thrower and a Cambridge local, it was a tough competition too – going up against Japan’s Genki Dean who had a longer PB throw by nearly 2 metres.
“Unfortunately the competition didn’t go as well as I was hoping,” said Ben, who threw 71.56m on the day, around 3.8m behind Genki Dean. “My technique didn’t hold under speed which I will be working on for my next competition – nationals.”
The pair will compete at the New Zealand Track and Field Champs over March 8 and 9, followed by the Brisbane Classic two weeks after that, and then the Australian Nationals in the first week of April. “We’ll be giving the Australians a run for their money,” Peeters smiled.
Around a dozen Cambridge athletes competed at the Porritt Classic in Hamilton on Saturday.
Legendary long-distance runner Camille Buscomb finished second in the women’s 1500m final by just five hundredths of a second.
16-year-old Liam McKee from the Cambridge Athletics Club finished second in the boys 300m hurdles, setting a new personal best time of 43.01 seconds, and finished second in the men’s 100m hurdles with a time of 14.9 seconds. Fellow club athlete Hinewai Knowles was due to compete, but had to pull out of the event due to an injury.
17-year-old Josie Taylor, a Cambridge athlete and member of the Hamilton City Hawks, finished fourth in the high jump at 1.7m.
Meanwhile Courtney Elliot, Jemima Antoniazzi, Kendall Turner, Arabella Barrio-Frojan and Mia Fletcher from St Peter’s School finished third overall in the girls’ 1500m team event. Jemima, Year 11, was also the school’s highest-finished runner in sixth place.
Will Taylor, a Year 12 St Peter’s student, also ran strongly to finish 8th in the boys 1500m final, only 0.29 seconds off the St Peter’s school 1500m off-site record.