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News09 Dec 2023

Wightman to launch Olympic campaign in Melbourne mile


Jake Wightman (© Victah Sailer)

Britain’s 2022 world 1500m champion Jake Wightman will continue his comeback after injury by competing at the Maurie Plant Meet, the first World Athletics Continental Tour Gold event of 2024, in Melbourne, Australia, on 15 February.

The European and Commonwealth Games medallist, who pipped Jakob Ingebrigtsen to the world title in Oregon last year, is among the first athletes announced for the event in Melbourne, the sole Continental Tour Gold meeting to be held in Oceania.

Wightman hasn’t raced since January and missed the defence of his world title in Budapest due to a foot injury.

Now ready to return to action, he will contest the mile and line up alongside Australia’s Stewart McSweyn and Matt Ramsden at the Lakeside Stadium.

“I am really looking forward to getting back to racing in 2024 after missing 2023 with injury. It will be great to get going at the Maurie Plant Meet in Melbourne against Stewart McSweyn and Matt Ramsden, who I often cross paths with when they base themselves in Teddington during the European summer season,” Wightman said.

“They are quality athletes so I know I will be tested immediately, which should make for a good spectacle for Aussie fans.”

Olympic finalist McSweyn, who was narrowly defeated in the 3000m at the Maurie Plant Meet this year, said there would be no better way to open an Olympic year than against one of the world’s greatest on home soil.

“Having Jake in Melbourne will be an awesome addition to the Maurie Plant Meet. He’s one of the world’s best milers and a guy that will be right in the mix for the Olympic title next year,” McSweyn said.

“To have the chance to race him in front of a home crowd is going to be really fun. It’s also going to be a great opportunity for us Australian middle-distance guys to have a good early season indicator of how we match up against one of the world’s best.”

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