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Bartlett, Taylor have golden glow

Mia Bartlett won a gold medal in the U18 javelin, and silver in the U18 Hammer. PHOTOS/SUPPLIED

ATHLETICS

CHRIS COGDALE
[email protected]

Josh Taylor won two gold medals.

Athletics Wairarapa’s Mia Bartlett and Josh Taylor have a golden glow after the national track and field championships in Hastings.

Bartlett won gold and silver in throwing events, and Taylor secured two gold medals in senior para events over the weekend.

Wairarapa College student Bartlett left it until late to take victory in the girls’ under-18 javelin.

A throw of 37.08 metres with her sixth and last attempt was enough to take the national title, although Athletics Wairarapa coach John Quinn said it was nerve-wracking with all the girls throwing their best in the last round.

Bartlett went into the final round in second place and was pushed back to fifth, but she showed her fighting spirit as the penultimate thrower to better runner-up Vaya Chaplow from Hawke’s Bay by 0.85m.

Bartlett’s silver medal came in the u-18 hammer throw.

Barrett set the standard for others to chase in a hotly-contested competition with her first throw of 43.48m.

It wasn’t until the fifth round that Wellington teammate Mikayla Sola bettered Bartlett’s effort by almost 4m.

Taylor’s gold medals came in the men’s para open long jump, with a best of 4.29m, and in the men’s para open 400m, which he won in a time of one minute and 2.96 seconds.

Taylor raced the 400m against wheelchair competitors. He blasted out of the blocks and ran right up to his best.

Quinn said that like with all of Taylor’s events, the fingernail-biting started after the race while the computer decided who was closest to the world record.

Taylor also contested the para open shot put but was below his best in finishing fourth.

Of the other athletes, Travis Bartlett, in his first national championships, was fifth in the men’s u-20 javelin with a personal best of 36.35m.

Jack Hunter was fourth in the u-18 400m and 10th in the 800m, Kosta Mills crossed in seventh place in the under-20 800m, and April Milne was 12th in the u-18 girls’ 300m hurdles.

Now in an Auckland singlet but still very much an Athletics Wairarapa boy, Mikael Stazynski started the 4x400m relay for Auckland and finished with the gold medal.

Jarrod Yee finished fourth in the men’s u-18 triple jump with a best effort of 12.37m, just 19cm off third place.

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