'Another three more metres'
BREE Pogany went agonisingly close to making the final of the 200m hurdles at the Queensland School Sport Track and Field State Championships at the weekend.
The 14 year-old from Nanango travelled to the Queensland Sport and Athletics Centre in Brisbane as part of a Wide Bay representative team, leaving with 10th place.
A mix-up in the opening 100m of her hurdles race had Bree in last at the halfway mark, but the teenager put in a stunning final 100m to take fourth place in her heat.
Unfortunately fourth was not enough to progress to the final, missing the qualifying mark by a mere 0.35 seconds.
"I stuffed up my first 100m, I was coming last but managed to overtake and come fourth,” Bree said.
"Mum travelled down with me, and she said if there was another three metres I would have (made the finals).
"If my start was better I would have been in the finals, but I tried my best on the day.”
Bree's attention now turns to an upcoming meet on November 5, which will see her step up from 200m to 400m hurdles.
Toowoomba-based hurdles coach Neil Mccoy has been working with Bree for just three months, but said he's already seen a marked improvement in her performances.
"It's hard because of the distance, so she's probably only had four or five sessions with me,” Mccoy said.
"But in that time she's certainly improved. She's focusing on the next year and 400m hurdles, which is a very different race (to the 200m).
"You really have to rely on your 400m speed and being able to hurdle with both feet, but she's coming right along.
Mccoy said Bree's performances in the 400m should not be judged until she has spent a few years adjusting to the change in distance.
"It takes time to mature as a hurdler, it will take her two or three more years to get used to the 400m,” he said.
"But she's coming right along. The hurdle height doesn't go up anymore, so she just needs to be strong and fitter to handle the rigours of the 400m.”