WAIS sprinter Ben Offereins
will have his first competitive hit-out since being officially named on the
Australian team for the 2012 London Olympic Games this week, when he competes
at the Meeting de Atletismo Madrid on Saturday.
The AOC officially ratified
Offereins as a member of the Australian menís 4x400m this week, and he will
warm up for London with a run in the individual 400m in Madrid, alongside
fellow relay teammate John Steffensen.
Offereins admitted he is
relishing the opportunity to do what he enjoys best this weekend.
"Iím just looking forward to
racing, I love racing and after some good training I am ready for a competitive
hit-out against some pretty formidable rivals,Ē he said.
"It will be good to see John
have a run too. The team for London is shaping up pretty well with Steve
Solomon heading to world juniors and Joel Milburn capable of anything so it
will be great to watch the fourth starter in action.Ē
Fellow WAIS scholarship
holder Steve Hooker will take to the runway in Madrid to compete in the menís
pole vault as the reigning Olympic champion looks to step up his title defence
Other Australian Flame
athletes in action over this weekend include:
Dani Samuels (NSW), who will
make her European competition debut in the women's discus in Paris (FRA) on
Friday night against a loaded field that is led by Nadine Muller (GER) who has
the world lead of 68.89m.
The last time Samuels
competed on the Samsung Diamond League circuit was in Shanghai (CHN) where she
equalled her seasonís best of 62.34m. Croatian Sandra Perkovic won that
competition with a then world-lead, and she will again provide competition for
Samuels will also face, for
the first time this season, Olympic silver medallist Yarelis Barrios (CUB), who
is one of three athletes in the field with a 68m-throw this season.
In the menís javelin, Jarrod
Bannister (Qld) will compete for the first time outside of Australia this year.
Bannister, who threw 82.97m
at the Qantas Melbourne Track Classic in March, will face world-lead Vitezslav
Vesely (CZE) who hit 88.11 in Oslo (NOR) last month and Vadims Vasilevskis
(LAT), silver medallist from the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens (GRE).
Sally Pearson (Qld) will
step-out for her second Diamond League appearance of 2012 against some familiar
faces including Briton Tiffany Porter whom Pearson beat at the IAAF world
indoor championships in Istanbul (TUR) earlier this year.
While no insight will be
gained into her London-bound American rivals, with Dawn Harper, Lolo Jones and Kellie
Wells all absent from the field, there is still plenty of opposition from the
stars and stripes, led by last yearís world championship silver medallistDanielle
In the penultimate race of
the evening Lachlan Renshaw (NSW) will take to the track for the 800m, with David
Rudisha (KEN) looking for a third Diamond League win after his formidable run
in New York (USA) last month.
Back in Madrid, in the 400m
hurdles Tristan Thomas (Tas) will be looking for revenge over Justin Gaymon
(USA) who beat him at the Sydney Track Classic this year as well as Jack Green
Mitchell Watt (Qld) returns
to the long jump after his victory in New York with world leader Greg
Rutherford (GBR) and South African Godfrey Mokoena also in the field. Tamsyn
Manou (Vic) will take to the track in the 800m.
Meanwhile at the Lillestrom
Hyundai Grand Prix (NOR) on Tuesday evening Ben St Lawrence (NSW) continued his
Olympic preparations with a solid win in the 5000m. The current 10,000m Oceania
record holder won the event in 13:51.95, which was 30 seconds ahead of his
Fellow members of the
Australian Olympic team, Kaila McKnight (Vic)and Eloise Wellings(NSW)
finished fourth and fifth respectively in the 5000m. McKnight ran a seasonís
best of 15:35.96 while Wellings finished just behind in 15:40.75.
- Athletics Australia