11 December 2002

Queensland’s premier athletics stable is eyeing a hit and run mission at Australia’s most prestigious distance meet this weekend.

The University of Queensland Athletics Club will boast half the Queensland contingent vying for honours at the Telstra Zatopek Classic in Melbourne on Saturday, December 14.

Pat Clohessy, former coach of distance legend Rob De Castella, will guide his charges over the one-day meet, which will see some of Australia’s best distance athletes in action over events from 800m to 10,000m.

2002 Bridge to Brisbane winner Felicity Abram will lead the UQ assault when she faces off against Olympian Georgie Clarke in the feature Lisa Ondieki Under 20 3000m.

Dual Australian champion Peter Nowill will be out to defend his 2001 Zatopek title against a strong field in the 3000m steeplechase.

Entry into the prestigious Telstra Zatopek Classic for the six-strong UQ club members continues a rich vein of form for athletes under the guidance of Mr Clohessy.

800m specialist Nic Hudson has been a revelation since his National title earlier this year under Mr Clohessy, who also guided the University club to its fourth consecutive National Club Championship and Australian University Games title in 2002.

The annual Telstra Zatopek Classic honours distance legend Emil Zatopek- the only man to win Olympic gold medals at 5000 metres, 10,000 metres and the Marathon when he achieved the rare feat at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics.

The University of Queensland club members to contest the 2002 Telstra Zatopek Classic are Felicity Abram (U/20 3000m), Tom Dover (800m), Alexis Gilham (10,000m), Norman Hanna (5000m), Peter Nowill (3000m Steeplechase) and Ardine Voogt (10,000m).

Media: For further information contact Rowan Foster of UQ SPORT on 3365 6041 or 0421 976 972