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Sydney 2000 Australian Olympic Trials

The 2000 Australian Championships in late February was an official SOCOG test event for Athletics. Here is a view of the Olympic Stadium from the east stand. The sliding platform for the Olympic Torch is under construction. At the time, nobody knew what was going to happen with the lighting of the torch at the Opening Ceremony.

Medalists for the 2000 Australian Championships, Men's Pole Vault. Left to right; 3rd DannyKrasnov (Israel), 1st Paul Burgess (WAIS), 2nd Dmitri Markov (WAIS). Danny is a consistent over-achiever. Despite a modest p.b. he has made the Final at several Olympic Games and World Championships. Paul is a former training mate from when I lived in Perth. He started out in the WAIS gymnastics program, but switched to pole vaulting when he got too tall. Paul was taken from absolute beginner to World Junior Champion (1996) in just 4 years by WAIS coach, Steve Rippon.

Steve Rippon met Alex Parnov at the 1994 World Junior Championships in Lisbon. Alex coached the gold and silver medalists, Viktor Chistiakov (RUS) and Dmitriy Markov (BLR). In early 1995, Steve arranged for Alex, Viktor, and Dmitriy to stay with him for several months in Perth. They liked Australia so much, they decided to live here. Viktor, Dmitriy, and Paul Burgess represented Australia at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.

Australian Olympic Trials, Stadium Australia, August 2000. Athletes are introduced for the Men's 100m Final. Left to right; Patrick Johnson, Kieran Noonan, Daryl Wohlson, Paul di Bella, Matt Shirvington. It's the middle of winter in Australia. The competition was held in cold and blustery conditions.

Nick with Tickets

Fistfulls of tickets! Unlike many people, I got lots of Games tickets in the ballot. (And these were just for the 5 free days I had before the Athletics started !) It turned out that I did not need many of my tickets. My Athletics NTO accreditation was good for a free seat at many venues.

Cumberland Gymnasium

Even Cumberland Campus got swept up in Olympic fever. The gymnasium was an official training site.

Media Village at old Lidcombe Hospital

The old Lidcombe Hospital site next door to Cumberland Campus was turned into the Media Village. This photo was taken shortly before everyone arrived. I wanted to steal one of the flags, but security was very tight.

Overlooking the Olympic Site from Millenium Park

Looking south to the Olympic Park Precinct from atop a man-made hill in Millennium Park. The Precinct has been quarantined; you needed a pass to get in and out.

The Olympic Torch Relay runners pass through Bankstown

The Olympic Torch Relay comes to Bankstown. The Games must be close now.

Dominic Johnson at the Warm-Up Track

There was a low-key Athletics competition (with Olympic Athletes and Officials only) the day before the Opening Ceremony. The meet was held on the warm-up track next to the Olympic Stadium. This track was used for the 1996 World Junior Championships. In the photo is 1) Dominic Johnson (St Lucia), standing casually with pole (Dom jumped 5.40m in Qualifying and did not advance); 2) Kellie Suttle (USA), background right (Kellie jumped 4.30m in Qualifying, but only 4.00m in the Final for 11th place); 3) Alejandra Garcia (Argentina), on runway (Alex jumped 4.15m in Qualifying and did not advance. She visited Oz in February 2000 and set a South American record of 4.42m at the Sydney GP); 4) Mel Mueller (USA), background left (Mel jumped 4.25 in Qualifying and did not advance).

Stacy Dragila pole vaulting at Warm-Up Meet

Training jump by World Record holder and World Champion, Stacy Dragila (USA). Well, you'd be able to tell that it was Stacy if she wasn't a stupid "lefty" and put her arm in front of her face for this photo.

Kellie Suttle at take-off

This a jump by Kellie Suttle (USA) in the warm-up competition. I was Judge (announcer, recorder, bar judge etc) for this competition, but found time to sneak out a photo. In the background is Don Allen (Jumps Judge), and Chad Harting (USA), seated watching Kellie. (Chad was a surprise addition to the US Olympic team. He jumped 5.40m in Qualifying and did not advance.)

McDonalds sign on Olympic Boulevard

McDonalds, they're everywhere!

Click here to go to SYDNEY 2000 OLYMPIC GAMES - LET THE GAMES BEGIN       


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Last Updated on: May 2013

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