Home » The key for Aussie Olympian after ‘miserable’ year

The key for Aussie Olympian after ‘miserable’ year

Australian running champion Olli Hoare didn’t need long to think when asked a simple question about his 2024 campaign.

“What is going to make a successful 2024 for you?” the middle-distance star was asked on the Citius MAG Podcast.

“Honestly, just staying happy,” smiled Hoare, the men’s 1500m gold medallist at the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games.

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“I think my 2022 year, which was one of my most successful years, I was miserable mentally. I was dealing with a lot of garbage in my head, a lot of head noise as my brother would call it.”

Hoare is in Adelaide for the Australian Track and Field Championships, taking place between April 11 and 19.

The US-based athlete will race the men’s 1500m as he makes his comeback from a long break caused by a groin injury.

He hasn’t raced since June last year but is set to line up over 1500m in Adelaide, hunting a national title three months out from the Paris Olympics.

Here’s everything you need to know about the Australian Track and Field Championships.

What are the Australian Track and Field Championships?

Australia’s best able-bodied athletes and para-athletes compete in open or underage competition at the country’s pinnacle domestic athletics event, vying to become national champions.

This year’s national titles are the 101st edition and are particularly significant given it’s an Olympic and Paralympic year. The championships are not categorically a selection trials for the Paris Games, but performance at the national titles is a consideration of Athletics Australia selectors.

The national titles are not limited to Australian participants. Athletes from New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Singapore and Ireland are among the international competitors featuring this year.

What are the dates and times of the championships?

The national titles are taking place between April 11 and 19, with each day beginning around 9am (Adelaide time) and concluding between 5.30 and 7.30pm.

The open and under-20 events are taking place from April 11-14, while the junior competition is scheduled for April 14-19.

Where are the championships taking place?

Adelaide’s SA Athletics Stadium is hosting the championships.

Event schedule

Athletics Australia’s event schedule for the open and under-20 competition can be found here.

The event schedule for the junior competition can be found here.

How to follow

Follow the action live through the Roster Athletics website or app, and keep an eye out for daily features and news via Wide World of Sports.

Who are some of the must-watch athletes?

Rohan Browning (men’s 100m, 200m)

Australia’s fastest man will be tearing down the straight, aiming to successfully defend his national 100m crown. The 26-year-old from Sydney takes a legal personal best of 10.01 seconds into the national titles, recorded at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021. He needs to clock 10.00 or quicker to qualify for the Paris Games by time. Browning will also race in Adelaide over 200m, which he hasn’t run a lot but has been warming to in recent times.

Jessica Hull (women’s 1500m, 5000m)

The Olympic finalist from Albion Park in NSW is one of Australian athletics’ golden girls. Hull owns seven national records across the 1000m, 1500m, 3000m and 5000m distances, including outdoor and indoor competition. She’s also won every individual race she’s contested on Australian soil since 2020, carving out an eight-race winning streak. The 27-year-old is smiley, bubbly, kind and humble, as well as a ferocious competitor with enormous self-belief. She’ll be trying to successfully defend her 1500m and 5000m national titles.

Kelsey-Lee Barber, Mackenzie Little, Kathryn Mitchell (women’s javelin)

In these women, Australia has three genuine Olympic medal shots in its javelin ranks. Barber is a two-time world champion and an Olympic bronze medallist, Little is a world championship bronze medallist, and Mitchell is the national women’s record holder, having hurled a javelin 68.92 metres in 2018. Their showdown in Adelaide is shaping up as an epic.

Angus Hincksman (men’s ambulant 800m, 1500m)

The 18-year-old from Adelaide, a T38 athlete with cerebral palsy, is among the rising stars of Australian athletics. He won 1500m bronze at the Para Athletics World Championships in Paris last year and will return to the French capital this year, suiting up for his Paralympic debut. Watch him take on the men’s ambulant 800m and 1500m on his home track this week.

Gout Gout (under-18 men’s 100m, 200m)

If you’re wondering just how good this 16-year-old speedster is, consider this: on 2GB radio in January, Athletics Australia president Jane Flemming likened him to Usain Bolt. “Have a Google of this guy and watch him run — he is built like Usain Bolt and he runs like him,” Flemming said. “He is running not dissimilar times to what Bolt did at the same age.” Gout, an Ipswich runner with South Sudanese heritage, has already clocked legal times of 10.29 in the 100m and 20.69 in the 200m. And despite only being 16, he owns the Australian under-18 men’s 200m record. Gout is a superstar in the making.