Little Aths | Finishing touches to facility almost complete

By Tyler Maher

The "icing on the cake" of the upgrades to McEwen Reserve's athletics facility is almost complete.

Shepparton Little Athletics Centre president Aileen Zanelli was excited for the long and triple jump component of the refurbishment to be completed after a couple of slight delays.

“It's the final part of our upgrade, the long and triple jump area,” Zanelli said.

“Half of the run-up is finished but one of the drums of epoxy had a hole in it in transit so water got in and damaged it.

“It came from overseas, so obviously with everything going on at the moment it's been a bit hard to access another one.

“Then it will be all complete.

“Once they got going a couple of days of heavy rain delayed it and now there's been this other delay, otherwise it would have already been finished.

“The new sand is in there, white river sand. There's going to be a cover for the sandpit as well, so it will be up to standard for what's expected everywhere.

“It will be the icing on the cake.”

Members of the Shepparton centre will not be able to use the final upgrade for some time due to the coronavirus pandemic, with the presentation of the season's awards also on hold for now.

But Zanelli was pleased her charges were able to complete their championship events before the sport shutdown took hold.

“The run-ups were in pretty bad shape, they were lifting up and everything, but we'll have to wait until next season to use the new ones now,” she said.

“For our championships the council dug a temporary pit for us to be able to complete the long and triple jump events, which was greatly appreciated by us.

“We've got all of the trophies for our presentations ready but we're just waiting until everyone can get back all together again.”

Also on the backburner for now is higher representation for many members of the centre, but Zanelli remains hopeful they will still be able to compete eventually.

“We had 21 athletes qualify for the State Track and Field Championships which were to be held on March 14 and 15 at Casey Fields,” she said.

“These championships have been postponed and are still hoping to go ahead at some stage, but of course this will depend on the duration of the isolation due to Covid-19.”