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Athletics - 13. May 2007.

Donna does it in Doha

Tasmanian Donna MacFarlane recorded a victory and Sally McLellan the second fastest time in her career at the IAAF World Tour meeting in Doha, Qatar overnight.

On a warm and humid evening MacFarlane, a Hobart radio producer and mother of two, recorded one of the biggest wins of her rejuvenated career, controlling the race to hold off a strong field of Africans to win in 9:34.47.

Jamaican Korene Hinds finished second in 9:37.01 with Ethiopian Mekdes Bekele third in 9:37.64. Albury’s Victoria Mitchell was seventh in 9:45.20.

Hurdler Sally McLellan wasn’t able to repeat her stunning IAAF World Tour win in Osaka last week; however she did achieve her aim of consistently breaking the 13 second barrier, finishing third in the 100m hurdles.

McLellan clocked 12.90 secs, her second fastest time ever, in a fast race won by 23-year-old American Virginia Powell, whose 12.66 eclipsed McLellan’s world leading 12.71 from Osaka. Powell’s compatriot Lolo Jones was second in 12.78.

McLellan’s performances have her on top of the IAAF World Tour standings with 42 points and she is now virtually guaranteed a start in the lucrative World Athletics Final in Stuttgart, Germany, in September. She will now return to the Gold Coast to prepare for a return to Osaka for the world championships.

Powell is a quality athlete, coached by triple Olympic gold medallist Valerie Briscoe and the experienced Bobby Kersee; she made the semi-finals at the world titles in Helsinki, before improving rapidly in 2006 to win the both the NCAA and US outdoor titles, the former in a lifetime best of 12.48 secs.

Queensland pole vaulter Alana Boyd leapt 4.25m in the pole vault to finish 7th. Russian Yuliya Golubchikova was the winner with 4.54m.

The Super Grand Prix at the Qatar Sport Club lived up to its expectations, with six meet records, and a string of world leading marks.

The highlight was two-time world junior champion Blanka Vlasic’s display in the high jump. The Croatian set a new national record of 2.04m before having three solid attempts at a new world record of 2.10m.

The middle distances also produced high quality athletics.Viola Kibiwot Jelegat dominated the women’s 1500m pulling away in the straight to win in 4:05.43, a meeting record.

In the sprints, Allyson Felix produced an unusual 100/400m double, winning with 11.27 and 50.40 - a new world leader.

Full results at http://www.iaaf.org/gp07/results/eventCode=3799/index.html

Athletics Australia Media and IAAF

For further information or to arrange athlete interviews, please contact Athletics Australia Media:

David Culbert – 0417 272 641 or [email protected]

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