Shot Put Gold for Wesche at World U20 Champs
Maddison Wesche continued New Zealand’s stunning run of World shot put champions, winning the Women’s Under 20 World Championship in Tampere, Finland with a last gasp effort.
Sitting in third after the second round with 16.47m, the 19 year old Aucklander did not improve until she unleashed a huge 17.09m personal best effort, hitting the lead by 0.04m from Chinese and Dutch athletes on 17.05m.
Wesche continues New Zealand’s fine run of shot put world titles following the recent heroics of Dame Valerie Adams, Tom Walsh and Jacko Gill.
Coached by Gill’s father Walter and strength and conditioning specialist Mike Schofield, Wesche took advantage of her previous international experience to remain focused right to the end of the competition, adding 0.09m to her personal best.
The new 2018 champion finished 20th two years ago at the 2016 World Under 20 Championships and 17th at the 2015 Under 18 Championships and becomes the third Kiwi to win an Under 20 title after Adams victory in 2002 and Gill’s two victories in 2010 and 2012.
Katrina Robinson finished 15th in the women’s 3000m final in 9:22.80, having led the pack chasing down the early leaders. Robinson starts in the 1500m later in the championships.
Sprinter Lucy Sheat, from Blenheim didn’t reach the form she had during the New Zealand summer and was well off the pace in the women’s 100m first round. Needing to finish in the first four across the line in her heat or in the next fastest four athletes from the five heats, Sheat did not have the speed to make the last 24 athletes, finishing with a ranking of 33rd.
Sheat will be hoping for a better result when the 200m rolls around in two days’ time.