Australian Masters Games

Day 4 - Another world record and gold medals for former Commonwealth Games stars

8 October 2013

Day 4 - Another world record and gold medals for former Commonwealth Games stars

Kilsyth’s Lavinia Petrie celebrated her birthday just in time for the 14th Australian Masters Games being staged in Geelong throughout this week.

Turning 70 on 13 September meant a new masters age-grouping and the chance to focus on Great Britain’s Cecelia Morrisson’s women’s 70-74 world record at 5000 metres of 22m 06.02secs.

Today’s fourth session of athletics competition at the Games provided the platform and the former Australian representative did the rest - carving nearly 42 seconds off the old mark to take victory and the record in 21m 24.23secs. It followed Kelly Ruddick’s achievement in bettering the W40-44 5000 metres walk world mark on Monday.

Petrie was a member of Australia’s first ever team to go to the World Cross Country Championships which competed in Morocco in 1975, having won the women’s national championship the previous year – one of six medals she collected in the fiercely-contested event from 1966 onwards.

Meanwhile 1982 and 1986 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Julie McDonald was anchoring her Geelong Pussycats unit to victory in the 35+ badminton team competition by a margin of 6 matches to 3 over their grand final rivals - The Bad Seeds.

Jane Marney, Katja Thomas, Craig Booley, Gary Sapwell and Ken Haggerty completed the locally-based team of three women and three men which dominated the round robin competition from Saturday to go into today’s gold-medal match as the warm favourites.

Another Commonwealth Games representative, Dawn Nelson-Furnell, who went to Dehli in 2010, was in action in the FITA target archery competition at the Lovely Banks venue, scoring an impressive victory in the women’s 40-49 recurve event. Husband Peter picked up bronze in the same event in M50-59 to make it a family day-out.


Today also saw results confirmed from Monday’s arduous weight pentathlon – a popular part of the track and field athletics program. Amongst the outcomes from the five-event competitions in which athletes score points for their best performances in each of the shot put, discus, hammer, javelin and weight throws:

  • former Mad Max cast member and veterinary-surgeon turned minister-of-religion Stuart Gyngell secured victory by nearly 600 points in the men’s 44-49 category, to celebrate his exit from the age-group next month when he turns 50. Predictably the big man from West Wollongong scored most points in the shot – the event in which he won Commonwealth Games bronze in 1986
  • Traralgon medical student and supermum-of-eight, Tracey Zakazakaarcher returned to her favoured sport with a win in the women’s 35-39 age group
  • three-time Australian tuna-throwing champion Matthew Staunton (High Wycombe, WA) lost out to nationally-ranked former South African hammer thrower Ricard Meiring (Orange, NSW) by just 67 points in the men’s event in the same age category
  • Samantha Latanis, the 41 year old from Belmore in New South Wales who took up the sport again in order to keep up with her young children’s venture into little athletics, garnered the W40-44 gold
  • the event’s oldest competitor, 80-year-old Tina Baarslag-Leb (Croydon South, Victoria) tallied a very impressive score of 2595pts to be crowned queen of the W80+ division


With the Games reaching the half-way mark, Wednesday features competition in 17 sports as well as some time away from the sporting action, with the staging in the Avalon Airport Games Village of the Mid-Week Party.

  • The Robbie Williams Experience will entertain Games athletes and other accredited personnel from 5.00pm, with those attending encouraged to wear a touch of red and consider a donation in support of fellow Games’ participant Peter Lane’s establishment of a foundation in memory of his baseball-player son, Chris Lane who was tragically killed whilst training in the United States in August. Read more here.
  • Stephen Hennessy, 44 from Springfield Lakes (Qld) who has already collected 15 gold medals at Australian Masters Games in indoor rowing and rugby union, after success on day one of the indoor rowing here in Geelong, goes for more gold in the 2000m event.
  • 83-year-old Games ironman, Arthur Ince, who is competing in more than a dozen events across three sports at the Games also goes in the indoor rowing 2000m
  • Dawn and Peter Nelson-Furnell return to Lovely Banks seeking further medal success in the FITA Clout event in the archery competition
  • competition comes to a climax in the touch football tournaments with the finals at the King Lloyd Reserve in Newtown
  • the last of five days of smallbore and air rifle competition will be staged at the Geelong Smallbore Club at Breakwater whilst the clay target events begin at Balliang
  • billiards replaces snooker as the Games cue sport’s discipline at the Shell Club in Corio whilst the mixed pairs and triples take over from men’s and women’s pairs in the lawn bowls competition being staged at the Eastern Park, Geelong West and Belmont Bowls Clubs


The Australian Masters Games will be staged until Saturday 12 October and is one of Australia’s largest multi sporting events.

For further Australian Masters Games information and to register, visit -

More news...

Countdown until the Games begin

420 days 12 hours 41 mins

Get social