Canberra, Australia; 28 February 2024 – World class athletics will hit the nation’s capital this weekend, with the Chemist Warehouse Summer Series rolling on with the Canberra Track Classic and Australian Cross Country Selection trials taking place over two days.

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Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic
Saturday, March 2 from 2pm AEDT

Long a key event on the Australian sport calendar, the Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic makes a welcome come-back to the Australian Institute of Sport after a two-year hiatus. Drawing both domestic and international athletes, the meet is a key qualification opportunity for athletes vying for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Tokyo Olympian Sarah Carli takes centre stage in the Women’s 400m Hurdles, marking a pivotal moment in her season. The meet stands out as the sole opportunity on the Australian leg of the World Athletics Continental Tour to showcase her form in her pet event as the Wollongong product zeros in on the Olympic qualifying standard of 54.85.

“Being an Olympic year, I have the qualifier in the back of my mind every time I step on the track. On Saturday, I’ll be focusing on executing the race plan that I’ve been working on but I’m feeling confident that I’ll get a fast time on the board and regardless, it will help build a plan for the rest of the season,” Carli said.

“I’m feeling really excited to race in Canberra. There is definitely a bit of pressure but I’m in good shape. I raced a 600m in December and got a PB there, and I did a 100m earlier this year and did another PB so I’m excited to put together all the work that I’ve been doing over the last couple of months.”

Known as a sprinter’s paradise, the track at the AIS will showcase three of Australia’s fastest ever woman, as Australian record holder Torrie Lewis returns to the very track where she etched her name into the history books to take on Bree Masters and Naa Anang for an enticing showdown down the straight.

Torrie Lewis
Photo by: Athletics Australia

The sprint hurdles action presents as a double drawcard, with French prodigy Sasha Zhoya and comeback queen Liz Clay both fit and firing. After a withdrawal from the Maurie Plant Meet due to a minor quad complaint, Zhoya sprinted to a season opening 13.45 (-2.1) win at the WA State Championships last weekend.

The visiting star will look to finish his tour of Australia with a bang against the likes of World Championships duo Jacob McCorry and Nick Andrews, while Clay will attempt to make it two wins from two over the Chemist Warehouse Summer Series against Hannah Jones, Canadian Michelle Harrison and the in-form Danielle Shaw.

Jacob McCorry and Nick Andrews
Image © X Athletics Australia

A pair of 800m races will highlight the strength of the next generation, with Australian Under 20 record holders Claudia Hollingsworth and Peyton Craig set to light up the track. 18-year-old Hollingsworth became the first Australian teen to break the two-minute barrier in Melbourne, and will go head to head with Olympians Bendere Oboya and Georgia Griffith, while Craig will toe the line with Canberra local and World Championships representative Riley McGown.

Also featuring will be some of the nation’s Paris Paralympic hopefuls, including a slew of global medallists. Paralympic champion James Turner (T36) will look to add to his unbeaten run on home soil as he takes on Australia’s fastest Paralympian Chad Perris (T13) and T47 national record holder Jaydon Page in the Men’s Ambulant 100m, with the winner declared by the BASELINE system.

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 07: Chad Perris runs in the IPC Athletics Grand Prix Ambulant 100m heats during the Queensland Track Classic on March 7, 2015 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images for IPC)

The country’s top wheelchair racers will also line up for the 100m, with Rheed McCracken (T34) and Angie Ballard (T53) in action ahead of the World Para Athletics Championships in Kobe this May. Racing stalwart Ballard will come up against emerging talent Sarah Clifton-Bligh (T32), while Sam Rizzo (T54) is set to impress over both the 100m and 800m, having recently broken Kurt Fearnley’s 13-year-old Australian record in the 1500m.


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Over on the field, a credentialed Men’s Javelin line up awaits as former world champion Corey Anderson (T38) and the newly crowned F13 Australian record holder Jackson Hamilton take to the runway alongside former world junior champion and Pacific Games gold medallist Nash Lowis and World Championships representative Cruz Hogan. Supported by the ACT Government, the Canberra Track Classic is part of the Chemist Warehouse Summer Series and will be streamed live and free on Seven’s digital platform, 7plus.

Corey Anderson

Tickets to the Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic can be purchased here, and full entries can be viewed here and via the Roster Athletics app.

Australian Cross Country Selection Trials
Friday, March 1 from 6.15pm AEDT

Opening the curtains for the Canberra Track Classic, the Australian Cross Country Selection Trials on Friday will see some of Australia’s top middle distance talent race against the backdrop of Canberra’s Stromlo Forest.

Following the success of the Australian team at last year’s edition of the Championships in Bathurst, NSW, 108 athletes have been inspired to race for a chance to wear the green and gold guernsey at the World Athletics Cross Country Championships in Serbia later this month.

The trials have attracted both established and rising stars in the distance running ranks to Stromlo Forest, which will set the scene for a picturesque twilight meeting spearheaded by a host of Australian representatives including Liam Adams and Caitlin Adams.

While the Open competitors will race over 10km, the nation’s juniors will also match the global format with the Under 20 Men set to race over 8km and the Under 20 Women to complete a 6km course, as the likes of Jack Coomber and Charli-Rose Carlyon bid to make it back-to-back World Cross Country Championships appearances to set up their budding careers.

Open athletes can secure automatic selection with a top-two finish among Australian competitors, with the remaining selection at the discretion of Athletics Australia’s selection committee.

Full entries can be found here.

For more information, please contact:

Sascha Ryner
Athletics Australia
M: +61 416 858 419