Rotorua’s Michael Voss, who was the NZ 2015 and 2016 U/20 road race champion is going after another medal on Sunday.
The senior men’s race has drawn a strong field, including 2016 and 2017 champion Daniel Balchin from Canterbury, Rotorua’s 2015 and 2016 U/20 champion Michael Voss, Jacob Priddey from Hamilton who won the U/18 title in 2011 and 2012, Connor Melton from Canterbury who was second in the U/20 last year, and Christopher Dryden from Canterbury who was third in the U/20 last year.
Also in the hunt for a medal is Josh Maisey from Auckland who ran 29:59 for 10km in Melbourne last month.
Aaron Pulford from Thames will be looking to put an end to a string of second or third placings when he tackles the New Zealand road running championships tomorrow. Aaron has already tested out the five lap 2km circuit around the roads of the Bruce Pulman Park in Takanini with a convincing win in the Auckland championship three weeks ago.
An accomplished 10,000m runner on the track having won the national title four years in a row from 2014, as well as the national half marathon in 2010 and the marathon title in 2015, but Aaron has yet to win a road title. The 28 year old won the 2007 U/18 road title and in the seniors was third in 2014 and 2017, second in 2015 and last year in Cambridge when he was just two seconds behind Oli Chignell.
The women’s 10km title is expected to be fought out by Katrina Andrew from Otago and Audrey Gregan from Auckland. Mel Aitken from Otago has entered both the senior and master races and could have the edge for a medal in the seniors ahead of Melissa Black and Esther George, both from Wellington, and Bella Bloomfield from Otago.
Toby Gualter from Wellington, second in the national half marathon championship earlier this month, should add the U/20 road title to the cross country crown, as should Kirstie Rae from Wellington in the U/20 women. Andres Hernandez from Whanganui will be defending his U/18 title against the in-form Will Anthony from Wellington.
Martina Conner from Canterbury will be seeking the double this season in the U/18 women going for the road title after winning the cross country last month. Isabella Richardson from Auckland will be defending the U/18 title.
Brian Garmonsway from Wellington and Jonny McKee from Auckland are the leading master men competing. Lyndon Hohaia from Auckland will have the senior 20km race walk to himself being the sole entrant in the category B national permit meet. Courtney Ruske from Canterbury and Laura Langley from Napier should battle out the senior women’s 20km which is also category B.
Interest will centre on Daniel du Toit from Wellington in the U/20 10km walk. The 16 year old set a national age groups 5km record of 22:10 last month and he has a time of 46:38 for 10km, to his credit, which indicates he is in line for a fresh New Zealand under 17 and under 18 record.
The championships start tomorrow, Sunday, at 8.30am with the race walks, and the road races start at 11.30am with the senior 10km at 2.55pm.
The event schedule is here
The event will be live streamed on Athletics New Zealand Facebook page.