Genevieve LaCaze (Vic) boasts an impressive new personal best in the 3000m steeplechase this morning, after the Rio 2016 selected 26-year-old stopped the clock at 9:32.67 to place 4th at the IAAF Diamond League in Rabat (MAR).

Bettering her previous quickest ever time by more than a second, the performance is her fourth career best in 2016 alongside improved results in the women’s 1500m and 5000m from the Hunter Track Classic and Payton Jordan Invitational, as well as the women’s 800m in Nijmegem (NED) last week.

Not to be outdone, Fabrice Lapierre (NSW) and Ryan Gregson (Vic) have continued their charge toward the Olympic Games with season best results in the men’s long jump and men’s 1500m respectively.

Fast becoming a master of the clutch jump, Lapierre was forced to deliver an 8.31m (w: -0.4) leap in the third round to ensure his continuation in the competition after struggling in the early stages. Passing in the fourth round, he then soared to a wind assisted 8.36m (w: +5.2) to place second and miss the top spot by just two centimetres.

“My day didn’t start well, with two sub-par jumps including one where my leg collapsed under me to really reduce the distance. Thankfully I managed a great third attempt of 8.31m to secure a spot in the top-four and get another three attempts,” Lapierre said.

“My biggest jump of 8.36m in the fifth was probably both hampered and assisted by the huge tail wind. The board camp up quicker than it normally would so I had to pull up a little early.

“I’m very happy to have jumped out past 8.30m twice today and to head home with a season’s best. My progress is going well. We are aiming to hit that sort of mark consistently and to have done that a couple of times in my series today is good.

“I’m back to Phoenix in just over two weeks and then I’ve got another five week block of training. There’s still plenty of time to the Olympic Games to fine tune a few more things, and once that happens I believe that more speed and bigger jumps will come.”

Gregson’s podium finish in the 1500m was ensured after he ran a strong 3:34.43 to improve upon the maiden Olympic standard he ran at the Nijmegen Global Athletics Meeting last week. The time is his third fastest ever and his quickest in more than four years, with further outings at the distance scheduled for Rome (ITA) and Birmingham (GBR) in the coming weeks.

Ben St Lawrence (NSW) also took to the track at Round 3 of the IAAF Diamond League, clocking his fastest time in three years, 7:51.36, in the men’s 3000m, while Kathryn Mitchell(Vic) continued her five-event long string of top-three finishes with third (60.68m) in the women’s javelin throw.

In other results for the green and gold across the weekend:

–          Eloise Wellings (NSW) ran 15:51.10 to win silver in the five-kilometre Austrian Women’s Run in Vienna (AUT).

–          Clocking 28:39, the national 10,000m champion David McNeill (Vic) won a bronze medal at the Great Manchester Run, a ten-kilometre road race in Manchester (GBR).

–          James Nipperess (NSW) ran a new 3000m steeplechase personal best of 8:32.59 at the Hoka One One Middle Distance Classic in Los Angeles (USA), improving his previous best time by more than two seconds.

–          Competing at the FBK Games in Hengelo (NED), Luke Mathews (Vic) ran 1:47.75 for 7th in the men’s 800m, while Zoe Buckman (Vic) clocked 4:12.73 to cross 10th in the women’s 1500m. Brett Robinson finished 12th in the 5000m with 13:19.29 .

–          The national record holder Benn Harradine (Qld) threw 59.37m with his first attempt in the men’s discus throw, finishing in 9th place.

The IAAF Diamond League now moves to Eugene (USA), with the Olympic Games qualified Linden Hall (Vic) to compete in the women’s 1500m.

For more information on the IAAF Diamond League, please click here.

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