M75 4 by 800m relay team. Right to left:
Dieter Lacko QMA, Robbie Costmeyer ACTMA, Steve Dixon QMA, Don Mathewson NSWMA
Australian Masters Athletics (AMA) National Championships, Brisbane April 2022
Whilst most of the Weston Creek Athletics Club is about fostering young elite athletes in the ACT, one member is still competing nationally at 75 years of age.
Two years ago, I decided to stop competing at World Masters Athletics events and set myself a goal to compete in the next AMA National Championships and then retire. I entered the 2022 AMA Athletics championships in Brisbane to compete in the 5000m, 1500m, 10000m and 2000m steeplechase events hoping to run some PBs but not expecting any medals. Prior to departing Canberra, we were encouraged to form an M75 4 x 800m relay team, which we did, as the world record for this combination was vacant at the time.
During our recent T&F season at Woden Park, I managed to set records in the Mile, 3000m, 5000m, 10000m and One Hour run, so I was in good form, but the 1500m and 2000m Steeplechase eluded me. I came within 5 seconds on two attempts in both events. I had my last opportunity to set records in these events at these Nationals.
However, I had a massive setback a fortnight before the Nationals when I had a bad fall training at Isaacs Ridge. I can certainly recommend the nurses at the Tuggeranong Walk-In Clinic who dressed my many wounds every second day. Only two wounds needed dressing on day one of competition.
I entered four individual events, bypassing the Cross-Country event on Saturday morning as I had the 2000m Steeplechase on Saturday afternoon. I dodged a bullet there as the XC course was very wet, muddy, and slippery and there were a few injuries. We were very lucky that it did not rain over the four days and that my 5000m and 10000m races were held before 9am when it was not yet very hot and humid. I managed to set ACT records in the 5000m, 10000m and 2000m Steeplechase events, missing the 1500m record by only 1.09 seconds. I will ask Philo Saunders to give me tips.
Just to finish these Nationals on a high I teamed up with two Queensland M75 athletes, Steve Dixon and Dieter Lacko, plus Don Mathewson from NSW, and together we set a new World Record for the M75 4 x 800m relay.
I have now retired from competing at future AMA Nationals although I might be tempted to join a relay team at the Nationals in Sydney in 2023 to attempt to set a new WR in the 4 x 800m relay.
WCAC Life Member # 13