10 Apr 2024

Nation’s top athletes on track for Olympics compete in Adelaide


The pinnacle event of the nation’s track and field is out of the blocks, as thousands of Australia’s top and emerging athletes converge on Adelaide for the 2024 Australian Athletics Championships which start tomorrow.

Supported by the State Government, the largest annual athletics event in Australia and the Oceania region is set to attract athletes from 15 countries as well as their teams, families, and spectators. Just over 90 per cent of athletes competing are from outside of South Australia.

Held at the SA Athletics Stadium from 11-19 April, the 101st edition of the Championships will act as a key part of the nomination process for the Australian Olympic and Paralympic Teams travelling to the Paris 2024 Games.

The Championships will be one of the last opportunities spectators can witness Australia’s track and field stars in action ahead of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Australian Olympic Committee in expected to make the first round of selections for the Olympic team on the ground in Adelaide.

It is the first time Adelaide has hosted the championships since 1992 and follows a successful Australian All Schools Championships held in Adelaide in 2022.

For the juniors and next generation of talent coming through the ranks, the national championships will be a major hit out as athletes vie for national accolades and a chance to catapult themselves onto the world stage as selectors keep a watchful eye on them ahead of the World Athletics Under 20 Championships in Peru in August.

The national competition adds to South Australia’s blockbuster sporting events calendar, which in April includes AFL Gather Round, Adelaide Equestrian Festival, and LIV Golf Adelaide, and is closely followed by the National Wheelchair Rugby Championships and the Matildas game in May.

Minister for Recreation, Sport & Racing, Katrine Hildyard said it is such a privilege to have Australia’s leading track and field athletes and athletes from 14 other countries in Adelaide this week with the stage set for an incredible meet – a meet that will highlight the best of the best as they vie for selection to the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games just three and a half months away.

"Hosting the Championships gives our community an unprecedented opportunity to witness breathtaking displays of talent and athleticism, the result of years of determination, grit and persistence, incredible sportspersonship and athletes realising their sporting dreams," Minister Hildyard said. 

"Sport is so powerful in bringing people together, improving mental, physical and emotional health, giving people a sense of belonging and the knowledge that they are not alone. The more people who participate the healthier our community.

"I have no doubt that people being able to see and cheer on these remarkable athletes as they compete will inspire them to get active and involved in the sport they love and experience all the benefits that doing so brings.

"South Australia has a strong commitment to athletics and has invested $9 million into the stadium’s upgrade - a cornerstone of the Mile End precinct which now hosts the Australian Centre for Sports Aerodynamics and will see the completion of the extraordinary new South Australian Sports Institute in August.

"This is another elite sporting event on our state’s calendar which will help cement South Australia as a destination of choice for athletes and spectators alike."

Athletics Australia CEO, Peter Bromley said it is a thrill to be back in Adelaide for the 2024 Chemist Warehouse Australian Athletics Championships.

"The track at SA Athletics Stadium is truly world-class and we’re expecting some special things from our athletes in such a pivotal year for athletics," Mr Bromley said.

"These Championships are not just the pinnacle event of the season, but the collective efforts of our athletes, coaches and officials, and as we approach the Olympic and Paralympic Games, they hold particular significance. 

"We would like to extend our gratitude to the South Australian Government and the South Australian Tourism Commission for making these Championships possible. 

"With great anticipation, we look forward to showcasing the pinnacle of our sport in Adelaide and we’re confident that our athletes will put on a show."