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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Sunday - Stawell Gift Semis Previews

Sunday - Stawell Gift Semis Previews

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1 Sunday - Stawell Gift Semis Previews on Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:46 am


Stawell Gift Media Release
Sunday 8th April 2012

Wide open field for tomorrow’s Gift semis

Networks are reminded that the 2012 Australia Post Stawell Gift will be televised live on ONE from 12noon to 3pm tomorrow (Monday, 9 April). Feeds should be taken from the live broadcast as NO news feed will be distributed.

News crews are welcome to attend finals day of the 2012 Australia Post Stawell Gift but will be restricted to colour shots from outside the track.

The 131st running of the Australia Post Stawell Gift final will be staged at 2:45pm.

Jamaican sprint sensation Michael Frater, the flamboyant John Steffensen, an engineering student, a school teacher and an AFL boundary umpire all feature in tomorrow’s 2012 Australia Post Stawell Gift semi finals, the prelude to the grand finale at 2:45pm.

The 2012 Australia Post Stawell Gift is a wide open affair, with only 0.15 seconds separating the 12 fastest times from Saturday’s heats.

Only the winner of each semi-final progresses through to the final of the Australia Post Stawell Gift, where there is $40,000 prize money on offer for the winner and a place in the history books of Australia’s most prestigious footrace.

The Australia Post Stawell Gift semi-finals (12:40pm) and the 131st running of the Gift final (2:45pm) headline a packed day of finals racing action on Monday, which also includes Australian distance star Craig Mottram over two miles at 1:40pm.

Tickets can be purchased online at or at the gate.

For those who can’t make it to Central Park this Easter, tune into the live broadcast on ONE from midday to 3pm on Easter Monday.

Here is a preview to tomorrow’s 2012 Australia Post Stawell Gift semi finals (heat times in brackets):

Semi-Final 1
Red Michael Frater Jamaica 0 (12.35)
White Adrian Mott Hawthorn 5 (12.38)
Blue Matthew Hargreaves Tarneit 7.25 (12.37)
Yellow Matthew Short WA 8 (12.49)
Green Jaryd Cowley ACT 9.25 (12.49)
Pink Douglas Greenough East Bentleigh 9.5 (12.28)
Black Peter O’Dwyer Ballarat 10.5 (12.28)

4x100m relay world record holder Michael Frater’s only Gift running experience is his heat, where he ran the fastest time ever from the scratch mark in the Stawell Gift’s illustrious 131 year history. With contrasting experience, Ballarat’s Peter O’Dwyer lines up for his 25th Stawell Gift off a mark of 10.5m. Both will be competitive, but it’s East Bentleigh’s Douglas Greenough off 9.5m who is favoured to go through to the final after recording the sixth fastest heat time.

Semi-Final 2
Red Aaron Rouge-Serret Boronia 3.25 (12.41)
White Carl Morehouse Chelsea Heights 6.25 (12.44)
Blue Benjamin Weaver Mt Eliza 7.5 (12.39)
Yellow Ian Hinton NSW 8 (12.33)
Green Shaun Hargreaves Werribee 8.25 (12.28)
Pink Paul Tancredi Oak Park 9.25 (12.38)
Black Shane Woodrow Lake Gardens 10.75 (12.26)

National 100m champion Aaron Rouge-Serret will have his work cut out for him from his 3.25m mark with Shaun Hargreaves, Shane Woodrow and Paul Tancredi looking more impressive in their heats. In a unique feat Hargreaves’ brothers, Matthew and Chris, have also made it through to the semi-finals, but it is Shaun who is best placed to progress through to the final.

Semi-Final 3
Red Aaron Stubbs Queensland 4.75 (12.29)
White Joshua McCabe Queensland 6.5 (12.48)
Blue John Nicolosi Pascoe Vale 7.5 (12.46)
Yellow Matthew Wiltshire Alfredton 8 (12.21)
Green Tim Eschebach NSW 8.5 (12.34)
Pink Matthew Eddy Narre Warren 9.5 (12.33)
Black Ryan Camille Wheelers Hill 11 (12.48)

Ballarat’s Matthew Wiltshire was the $3 favourite prior to the running of the heats and qualified through to the semi-finals with the fourth fastest time. 2009 Stawell Gift winner Aaron Stubbs will be his major threat. The 21-year-old Queenslander has an air of mystique around him this year, having only decided to compete on Wednesday but then looking strong in winning his heat.

Semi-Final 4
Red Joel Bee Ballarat 4.25 (12.40)
White Bryce Teo WA 7 (12.40)
Blue Stuart Bainbridge NSW 7.5 (12.47)
Yellow Chris Hargreaves Werribee 8.75 (12.49)
Green Michael Bolton Frankston South 8.75 (12.29)
Pink Matthew Harvey Keysborough 11 (12.51)
Black Adam Coote Elwood 11 (12.20)

AFL boundary umpire Adam Coote was the third fastest heat winner only two days after officiating the Brisbane-Carlton match at the Gabba, where he ran approximately 15km. With a day of recuperation he is expected to be fresh for Easter Monday. Frankston personal trainer Michael Bolton has the tenth fastest heat time and will be Coote’s main challenge.

Semi-Final 5
Red Gary Finegan Queensland 4.5 (12.45)
White Kevin Brittain Grovedale 6.75 (12.19)
Blue Ben Mispelhorn Queensland 7 (12.55)
Yellow James Lobley Brighton 8 (12.50)
Green Paul Cracroft-Wilson Queensland 8.5 (12.30)
Pink Edward Ware NSW 8.75 (12.45)
Black Glenn Ross WA 11 (12.42)

Despite being drawn in the most competitive semi-final school teacher Kevin Brittain is favoured to make his third consecutive Stawell Gift final after recording the second fastest heat time. His main competition will come from Queensland beach sprinters Paul Cracroft-Wilson and Ben Mispelhorn and fellow Gift finalist from last year Edward Ware.

Semi-Final 6
Red Andrew McCabe Queensland 3.25 (12.56)
White John Steffensen NSW 6 (12.30)
Blue Shaun Fletcher NSW 7 (12.48)
Yellow Cole Unasa WA 8 (12.34)
Green Fabrice Melanie Noble Park 9 (12.41)
Pink Josh Tiu Doncaster 10.75 (12.15)
Black Marcus Cooper Ararat 11 (12.76)

22-year-old engineering student Josh Tiu is the Stawell Gift favourite after recording the fastest heat time, but has a reputation for tightening up under pressure. Former Commonwealth Games 400m champion John Steffensen has a competitive mark at 6 metres; the big-time performer could cause an upset.

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