Canberra, Australia; 2 March 2024 – Teenage sensation Claudia Hollingsworth has continued her meteoric rise with her maiden Olympic qualifying performance and third consecutive Australian Under 20 record tonight at the Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic, stealing the show alongside training partner Bendere Oboya.

The 18-year-old Hollingsworth (VIC) roared to victory over 800m in 1:58.81, finishing ahead of Oboya (VIC) who also clocked the Olympic standard of 1:59.30 in a career-best time of 1:59.01.

Hollingsworth dictated the terms with a confident run which culminated in becoming the third fastest Australian woman in history over the distance, bringing her one step closer to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Claudia Hollingsworth in the Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic
© James Mowle/Athletics Australia

“I was so happy to finish the race and go straight to my parents and coach, hugging them really makes it feel like a real achievement. Doing it early in the season and to hear it over the loudspeaker was really exciting,” Hollingsworth said.

Graduating high school in 2023, Hollingsworth is still adjusting to her newfound stardom but is welcoming the applause, as she and Oboya make it four Australian women qualified for the 800m in Paris alongside Catriona Bisset and Abbey Caldwell.

Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic 2024
© James Mowle/Athletics Australia

“I was just at school as well but I hope I’m really inspiring young kids to keep coming to athletics and giving it a go themselves, and showing what you can do at a young age and never give up,” Hollingsworth said.

Following suit in the last race of the night, teenager Peyton Craig (QLD) took command of the two lap race, clocking 1:45.91 to defeat Luke Boyes (1:46.15, NSW) as he works towards both the 2024 World Under 20 Championships and Paris Olympic Games.
Australia’s Paralympic sprinters lit up the home straight, with reigning Paralympic and world champion James Turner (ACT) throwing down a statement run of 11.66-seconds for a score of 100.51 on the BASELINE system – narrowly outside his 11.72 world record if not for the illegal windreading of +2.4m/s. Australia’s fastest Paralympian Chad Perris (ACT) took line honours in 10.62 (98.49) ahead of Jaydon Page (ACT) in 10.82 (96.30).

Peyton Craig ©James Mowle/Athletics Australia

“I’ve got the power and speed in my legs, and I know without the wind, I would have been able to run a really fast time. I’ve been following the coach’s orders, working with teammates and focusing on speed, so I’ve got lots of confidence and a new world record isn’t far away. That’s always the goal,” Turner said.


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Olympian Sarah Carli (NSW) opened her 2024 campaign in style when embracing the challenging elements of heat and wind, flying over the 10 barriers in the Women’s 400m Hurdles to stop the clock in 55.37.

Sarah Carli © James Mowle/Athletics Australia

Meanwhile, Sasha Zhoya (France) made his long-awaited arrival at the Chemist Warehouse Summer Season and left his mark down under with a swift 13.50 (-0.7) in the Men’s 110m Hurdles, while Liz Clay (QLD) made it back-to-back wins in the Women’s 100m Hurdles in 13.09 (-0.2).

Sasha Zhoya made his long-awaited arrival at the Chemist Warehouse Summer Season and left his mark down under with a swift 13.50 (-0.7) in the Men’s 110m Hurdles ©James Mowle/Athletics Australia

World Para Athletics Championships medallists Reece Langdon (VIC) and Angus Hincksman (SA) notched up more T38 Paralympic A qualifiers in the 1500m B race, with Langdon crossing the line in second place in 3:56.09, while Hincksman followed in fifth in 3:57.86.

©James Mowle/Athletics Australia

On a resurgent night for Australian 400m running, Tokyo Olympian Ellie Beer (QLD) led the way when racing to a new personal best of 52.14 to beat home Mikeala Selaidinakos (52.62, VIC), while 18-year-old Jemma Pollard (NSW) set a scorching World Under 20 qualifying performance of 52.97. The men matched the form as Luke van Ratingen (NSW) stopped the clock in 45.57 to lead four men under the 46-second barrier.

©James Mowle/Athletics Australia

Triple jumper Kayla Cuba (QLD) made it two wins from two in the Chemist Warehouse Summer Series, landing a best of 13.78m (+1.8) to break the meet record, and defeat Japan’s Maoko Takashina (13.67) and compatriot Desleigh Owusu (13.40m, NSW).

Sprint sensation Torrie Lewis (QLD) continued her Australian dominance when racing to a time of 11.31 (+0.5) in the Women’s 100m, rounding out a strong night of performances from the nation’s rising stars.

©James Mowle/Athletics Australia

Two more Paris Paralympic hopefuls achieved success in the nation’s capital with Sam McIntosh (T52, ACT) coming painfully close to meeting the Paralympic A qualifying standard in the 100m, clocking a windy 17.03, while Ella Hose (F37, VIC) also threw a personal best of 10.34m and a Paralympic B qualifier in the Shot Put F37.

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Full results from the Chemist Warehouse Canberra Track Classic, including the Hammer Throw event in Sydney can be found here.