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Chris Innes-Wong - an athlete on the rise.

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Chris is runner on rise

City Messenger
4 Mar 2012

Chris Innes-Wong - an athlete on the rise. 55378b067399ce87a6a9893574df1153_resized
THRILLING FINISH: Winner Chris Innes-Wong (red),
flanked by Luke Buchanan (green) and Jarrad
Dartnall (blue) at the Flagstaff Hill Gift.

BACKMARKER Chris Innes-Wong took out the feature race of a well-attended 17th Flagstaff Athletics Carnival in a thrilling finish on Saturday.

The Wayne Willis-trained runner, off 7.25m, came through the field of the 120m Open Gift in 12.73secs to pip Henley athlete Luke Buchanan by .01secs on a rain-affected track in front of about 1000 spectators.

McKinnon Parade’s Jarrad Dartnall was third. Innes-Wong’s triumph came about a month after he made his first professional racing final at last month’s Camden Classic.

In the women’s 120m Gift, Emma Freer (off 7m) held off Camden Classic winner Claire Ashman, prevailing in 14.36 secs.

Last year’s winner Amie Mittiga was third.

Young Guns Track Squad runner Matthew Fallon* took the honours in the night’s other feature race, the John Dawkins Memorial 550m.

The event is named in honour former South Adelaide footballer and champion Flagstaff Hill-based handicap runner John Dawkins.

Fallon, off 60m, won from Jake Stangewitz and Camden’s Matthew Cousins in 1:10.61.

One of the most popular performances of the meet was James Grant’s triumph off 280m in 4:06.85 in the City of Onkaparinga Mayor’s Mile.

It was a breakthrough win for John LeRay’s second-year runner, who was racing on his home track.

“It was a very popular win (because) he’s very well liked in our group,” LeRay said of Grant. The over-45s 400m event - considered the richest over-45s race in the country - was claimed by evergreen Brian Witty (off 95m) in 52.47.

The 62-year-old runner was the original winner of the men’s Camden Classic and took out the over-35 veterans’ race at Camden this year.

Other winners included McKinnon athlete Adrian Harris in the 70m Open, Liam Wright (70m under-20) and Jessica Oates, who triumphed in the 1600m under-17 race.

120 women’s Gift: Emma Freer
John Dawkins Memorial 550m: Matthew Fallon
Over-45s 400m: Brian Witty
Onkaparinga Mayor’s Mile: James Grant
70m Open: Adrian Harris
70m under-20: Liam Wright
1600m under-17: Jessica Oates

* Matt Fallon runs with McKinnon Parade - got no idea how the reporter Matt Turner came up with that one.



Chris Innes-Wong - an athlete on the rise. E437758e5c2d45a115dd38098c58fd90_resized

No danger of getting nabbed for not breasting the finish! His hands came 3rd.



Actually it is good to see a runner properly breasting the line. At least in SA they try to enforce the rule, it has become a joke in the VAL. 20 years ago the VAL would hand out $10 fines all over the place early in the season to get runners to use proper finishing technique, but now it is anything goes. Given the non-exact science of our finishing gates it frustrates the living hell out of me that they constantly let runners break the beam with their hands. I'll now get back down off my soap box.



I was a bit scared of how to finish the first time I ran back in prebay, I wasn't sure about the exact technique required and can't believe I actually look like this! Finishing is probably one of the few things I am confident about now with running.

Didn't realise the beam is what decides the winner, would of thought it was done with slo-motion cam.

Anyways, thanks for the comments.



Welcome to the forum Chris; and well done on your first sash with the SAAL.

Copy-book technique at the finish that would have Phil Daws telling the recalcitrants - "If a first-year novice can do it why can't you?"

Chris is actually a remarkable story. Having no previous experience with athletics, he contacted me after a radio interview I did a couple of years ago to seek some info about getting involved in athletics. I can't remember exactly what I said in reply but hopefully I was helpful. Rolling Eyes

During the latter part of last year he teamed up with a coach - Wayne Willis at Enfield and had his first start at the PreBay meet.

Rarely does an athlete take up the sport at 25 and six months later is capable of winning an open 120m Gift off little more than the novice mark.

A physiotherapist from the inner Adelaide suburb of Prospect, he's probably one of the finds of the season.

A decent winter under his belt and Chris can look forward to an exciting season in 2012/2013.



Two years ago tipped for big things. Would have liked some of that 100s each way yesterday!  Sad 

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