26 March 2024 • Junior Track & Field

Auckland Childrens Championship Photos

11 March 2024 • Junior Track & Field

Go Athletics Series

4 March 2024 • Events

McKinnon Shield #9

19 February 2024 • Events

McKinnon Shield 8

7 February 2024 • Events

Auckland T&F Championships

5 February 2024 • Junior Track & Field

Go! Series Day 1

22 January 2024 • Events

McKinnon Shield #7

16 January 2024 • Uncategorized

McKinnon Shield #6

9 January 2024 • Junior Track & Field

North Island Colgate Games

20 December 2023 • Announcement

Michael Hartshorne

18 December 2023 • Events

Daikin Night of 5s AUT Millennium Stadium

5 December 2023 • Events

McKinnon Shield Meeting #5

27 November 2023 • Uncategorized

Dick Quax Memorial Meeting

13 November 2023 • Events

Disability Sport Auckland Awards Dinner

3 November 2023 • Events

ACA Race Night Results

1 November 2023 • Events

McKinnon Shield Meet 28 October

30 October 2023 • Events

Athletics Auckland Marathon Champs

20 October 2023 • Announcement

World Athletics Rule Changes from 1st October 2023

16 October 2023 • Events

Auckland 10000m Championships

22 September 2023 • Uncategorized

Auckland Road Relay Champs & XCR Prize Giving

8 September 2023 • Announcement

Rodger Brickland – QSM for Services to Athletics

31 August 2023 • Events

Cross Country & Road Prize Giving

21 August 2023 • Events

Auckland Road Championships

28 July 2023 • Coaching

Aspire Cross Country Academy

26 July 2023 • Events

Long Bay GP4 Cross Country

20 July 2023 • Announcement

Mt Smart #2 Arena Now Open for Training

26 June 2023 • Events

Auckland Cross Country Championships

16 May 2023 • Announcement

Memorial Seat for Russ Hoggard

27 April 2023 • Announcement

Remembering Peter Booker

24 April 2023 • Events

ACA Southland Centennial Shield Relays

18 April 2023 • Uncategorized

Sports Shoes for Schools

13 March 2023 • Events

McKinnon Shield #9

22 February 2023 • Announcement

Auckland Team Selections to 2023 NZ T&F Champs Final

17 February 2023 • Events

NHB Children’s Ribbon Day

5 December 2022 • Junior Track & Field

Junior Ribbon Day Series

5 December 2022 • Events

McKinnon Shield Meeting #5

5 December 2022 • Announcement

Sir Murray Halberg ONZ, KNZM, MBE

28 November 2022 • Events

McKinnon Shield Meeting #4

23 November 2022 • Events

Dick Quax Memorial Meeting

16 November 2022 • Events

McKinnon Shield 3/Schools Competition 3

10 November 2022 • General

Research Project – Achilles Tendinopathy

2 November 2022 • Announcement

Inaugural Millie Sampson WU23 Invitational Mile

21 September 2022 • Coaching

2022 Summer Aspire Academy

14 September 2022 • Events

Auckland Road Relay Championships

13 September 2022 • Announcement

Athletics Auckland Junior Section Innovation Fund

6 September 2022 • Uncategorized

Inclusion Training Seminars

15 August 2022 • Events


9 August 2022 • Events


5 August 2022 • General

Auckland Athletes heading to U.S. College

2 August 2022 • Events

2022 Auckland -Road Team

27 June 2022 • Events

Auckland Cross Country Championships

16 June 2022 • General

“Give it your best Shot”

15 June 2022 • Coaching


15 June 2022 • Announcement

World Athletics Rule Book App

20 May 2022 • Events

Sports Shoes for Schools Initiative

13 May 2022 • Junior Track & Field

Junior Prize Giving Recipients

5 April 2022 • Announcement

Auckland Junior Prize Giving

17 March 2022 • General

Thermoregulation Study

10 March 2022 • Announcement

NZ Track and Field Championships

18 February 2022 • Announcement

Halberg Games 2022

10 February 2022 • Announcement

Auckland Track & Field Championships

23 December 2021 • Events

U16 & U18 North Island Interprovincials

22 December 2021 • Announcement

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year from AAI

13 December 2021 • Announcement

Introducing Get Set Go at Home with Athletics NZ

7 December 2021 • Announcement

2022 Colgate Games to Go Ahead

22 November 2021 • Announcement

NCAA Div 1, Cross Country Championship Final

19 November 2021 • Announcement

McKinnon Shield 1

15 November 2021 • Announcement

Upcoming Officials Seminars

11 November 2021 • Announcement

Auckland 5000m Championships

8 November 2021 • Announcement

McKinnon Shield to start on Saturday 20th November

8 November 2021 • Announcement

Club Night and Centre Training Days

28 October 2021 • Events

2022 Colgate Games

25 October 2021 • Announcement

McKinnon Shield Event Grid 2021/22

7 October 2021 • Announcement

Mt Smart Stadium Re-Open for Training

6 October 2021 • Announcement

Auckland Road Championships Cancelled

4 October 2021 • Announcement

Event Update – 4th October 2021

17 September 2021 • Announcement

Auckland Race Walker Alana Barber Retires

3 September 2021 • Announcement

Covid 19 Lockdown Auckland

23 August 2021 • Announcement

A Guide to the Paralympics

23 August 2021 • Announcement

ACA Relays – A Covid-19 Exposure Site

10 August 2021 • Events

NZ Cross Country Championships – Dunedin

22 July 2021 • Coaching

Aspire Winter Track & Field Academy

14 July 2021 • General

Track & Field Officials of the Year

14 July 2021 • Coaching

Athletics NZ Coach The Coach Workshops

13 July 2021 • General

McKinnon Shield Presentation

12 July 2021 • Announcement

Athletics NZ weekly round up

15 June 2021 • General

GP 3 Incorporating Auckland Teams Race

3 June 2021 • Uncategorized

For an update on upcoming Coaching Courses

31 May 2021 • Announcement

Ronan Lee storms home to win #XC2021 Round 2

31 May 2021 • Announcement

Samoan Language Week

17 May 2021 • Announcement

Athletics Auckland Grand Prix Race Results

15 March 2021 • Announcement

Colgate Games 2022

5 March 2021 • Announcement

Athletics Auckland Junior Championships 2021

5 March 2021 • Announcement

McKinnon Shield 9 – Competition update

2 March 2021 • Announcement

Nationals update from Athletics New Zealand

28 February 2021 • Announcement

Athletics Auckland Weekly Review – 1st March 2021

27 February 2021 • Announcement

Athletics NZ Track & Field Championships – Postponed

27 February 2021 • Events

World Athletics Continental Tour – Auckland

22 February 2021 • Announcement

Athletics NZ Child Safety and Member Welfare Update

18 February 2021 • Announcement

Auckland Stadiums Alert Level 2 Guidelines

16 February 2021 • Announcement

Auckland Grade 7-14yrs Championships Postponed

12 February 2021 • Announcement

Porritt Classic 2021

2 February 2021 • General

Officials C Track Seminar

29 January 2021 • Events

Cooks Classic

29 January 2021 • Events

North Island U16 & U18 Interprovincials

28 January 2021 • Coaching

Sprint Relay Session at Mt Smart #2 Arena

26 January 2021 • Events

Auckland Team to NZ Track & Field Champs

25 January 2021 • Announcement

Athletics Auckland Championships – Entries closing

24 January 2021 • Announcement

Auckland Results – McKinnon Shield & Potts Classic

23 January 2021 • Announcement

Alana Barber sets new records at the Potts Classic

18 January 2021 • Announcement

Zoe Hobbs Record Breaking Run!

13 January 2021 • Announcement

Colgate Games Scholarships 2021

21 December 2020 • Announcement

NZ Schools Track & Field Selected Team

21 December 2020 • Announcement

Daikin Night of 5’s – Auckland Women lead the way

17 December 2020 • Announcement

Oceania Area Permit Preview- Night of 5’s

16 December 2020 • Announcement

Athletes Community Award Badge

9 December 2020 • Coaching

Athletics Auckland Junior Festival Meets

4 December 2020 • Announcement

Inter Provincial U16-U18 Auckland Team Named

20 November 2020 • Events

Oceania Athletics One Day Meetings 2020/21

18 November 2020 • General

Getting on with living – Julian Castle

4 November 2020 • Events

Ingrid Frost Completes 300 Marathons

27 October 2020 • Events

NZ Road Race Championships

22 September 2020 • Uncategorized

North Sport Academy Junior Coaching Coordinator Vacancy

14 September 2020 • Announcement

All events cancelled for September

11 September 2020 • Announcement

Mt Smart #2 Arena

4 September 2020 • Announcement

Athletics Auckland Road Relays Cancelled

28 July 2020 • Events

Inter Provincial U16-U18 Newsletter One

26 July 2020 • Announcement

Cross Country & Road

22 July 2020 • General

Keegan Pitcher – Para Athlete

22 July 2020 • General

Anna Steven – Para Athlete T64

1 July 2020 • General

Kaia Tupu-South

26 May 2020 • History

Flashback Thursday – 21st May 2020

14 May 2020 • History

Flashback Thursday – 14th May 2020

8 May 2020 • History

Flashback Thursday – 2nd April 2020

8 May 2020 • History

Flashback Thursday – 7th May 2020

21 April 2020 • Events

2020 Cross Country & Road Season

1 July 2020 • General

Kaia Tupu-South

Teenage throwing talent Kaia Tupu-South is an athlete with very a bright future. Steve Landells chats to the gifted Aucklander to find out more of her sporting journey.

If you could combine the perfect set of ingredients for sporting success then New Zealand’s emerging throws talent Kaia Tupu-South hits the mark on every count.

Boasting a strong set of sporting genes, a highly motivated and intelligent demeanour and supported by a vastly experienced coach, it is perhaps little surprise the 17-year-old Aucklander has such an exciting future ahead of her.

Setting World U20 Championship qualification marks in both the shot and discus earlier this year elevated the Westlake Girls High School head girl to sixth and fourth respectively on the U20 world rankings.

And following the postponement of the 2020 World U20 Championships in Nairobi it is imminently possible the Takapuna Athletics & HC athlete could be even better placed to excel on the global stage should the event be rescheduled for next year.

Sporting genes

Her strong sporting lineage can be traced back to her grandfather, Bob South, an American who played NCAA basketball for San Jose State University.

Bob later relocated to New Zealand had two children including Kaia’s mother, who played netball and basketball while her father was a former boxer.

To add further sheen to her sporting family her brother, Trey, is a three-time national boxing champion.

Of course it takes far more than good sporting genes to create a champion and it was clear from a young age she was desperate to compete.

Aged just four at the time she recalls enviously watching her older brother, Trey, compete at Takapuna Athletics Club itching to be part of the action.

She had to wait until her fifth birthday to get involved in her local athletics club and her eagerness was quickly rewarded.

“I definitely loved it from the beginning,” she recalls. “I was the best at long jump and sprints and started to set club records. I remember at the age of seven I had the club discus (age-group) record but then on the last club night of the year a girl beat my record by three metres. I was so hurt I started practising with my parents, that is when I first realised as long as I trained hard, I’d stay ahead of the opposition.”

Multi events maestro

From the age of ten, Kaia, a huge admirer of Great Britain’s 2012 London Olympic heptathlon gold medallist Jessica Ennis, switched her focus to the multi-events.

Boasting a good range of all-round athletic skills she was crowned Auckland age-group pentathlon champion only for her aspirations to perform as a future heptathlete to nosedive after picking up a foot injury in April 2017.

The lingering issue took a long time to diagnose and Kaia eventually underwent bone fracture surgery in November of that year.

However, if Kaia expected a trouble-free return to training post-surgery she was given a rude awakening after suffering persistent shin splints aggravated while running.

“It was super frustrating,” she adds of the period in 2017 and 2018 which was spent largely on the sidelines. “Previously I’d had a few growing pains but the foot problem was my first big injury. After surgery I then tried to train but it was hard with the shin splints.”

Event change

Unable to run without pain she wisely switched her emphasis to the throws and targeted the discus and shot at the 2018 New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships in Dunedin.

The decision proved a masterstroke as she secured a decisive discus gold with 44.88m and shot put silver – a performance which convinced her future life as a thrower.

“I was really happy with the performance,” she adds of the 2018 school nationals. “It was my first big competition back. It was really positive.”

Acknowledging the throws had been her greatest strength as a multi-eventer she returned from the championships fully focused on shot and discus.

Already coached in the throws since the age of eight by Walter Gill, who had coached his son, Jacko, and Maddison Wesche to World U20 shot put titles, Kaia could move from a position of strength. The pair form a tight bond and the teenager insists he has all the qualities to take her a long way.

“As a coach he is very knowledgeable and in the best part of a decade that I’ve known him, I’ve never had one argument with him,” she explains. “During competitions he is always very calm, positive and patient.”

Golden girl

At the 2019 New Zealand Track & Field Championships, Kaia was one of the star age-group performers winning three gold medals – in the U18 shot and discus and U20 shot – as well U20 discus silver.

It was a breakthrough competition for Kaia who believes she earned a lot of confidence from her efforts in Christchurch.

“It was an awesome weekend and it felt like the first time I’d produced a mentally strong performance,” she explains. “I don’t think I’d ever beaten Jaidyn (Busch) before, I was nervous and not the favourite but to throw 16.48m to win gold was massive for me. It was the first time I’d thrown further in competition than in training.”

Her confidence lifted, in the winter of 2019 she stepped up from two to three throws sessions a week and further developed her strength, speed and technique.

Global goal

A naturally dynamic thrower, Kaia set herself the target of a place in both the shot and discus at the 2020 World U20 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya and in January had already achieved her target of a qualification mark in both events.

In Lower Hutt in mid-January, she heaved the shot out to 15.12m – to improve her previous PB by more than a metre.

One week later at the Potts Classic in Hastings she further demonstrated her dazzling form by hurling the 1kg discus out to 49.83m – for a near two metre lifetime best.

“It felt like a relief and the pressure had been lifted as I worked towards the World Juniors,” adds Kaia, who in December won discus gold and shot silver at the 2019 New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships in Wellington.

National champion

Yet it was at the 2020 New Zealand Track & Field Championships where she produced, arguably, the performance of her career with a 53.69m effort to win U20 discus gold in favourable conditions on the opening day at Nga Puna Wai.

“I was nervous going back to Christchurch after it has been so slippery and wet in the circle (at the 2019 New Zealand Champs),” she explains. “I actually had the world’s worst warm up and threw the first throw out of the sector. But I took myself away and in the final round threw 53.69m (to surpass Savannah Scheen the long-time leader). I tried not to react at that moment, and remember I didn’t only want a PB, but to win the competition.”

Later that day, Kaia came within 6cm of her shot lifetime best with a 15.06m effort to place sixth in the senior competition but on the final day she struggled to find her rhythm in the U20 shot and had to settle for silver behind Jaidyn Busch with a best of 14.49m.

Injury setback

Kaia intended to sign off her domestic campaign by competing at the Australian Championships in Sydney but she rolled her ankle in a training throw and picked up a small avulsion fracture. She was put in a moonboot, the Australian Championships were cancelled due to the pandemic and she spent much of her time in lockdown at the family home in Albany re-habbing from injury.

It was also during this period when Kaia learned of the postponement of the World U20 Championships in Nairobi. It was a decision she fully accepted, however she is still keen to feature in the re-arranged event.

“I was happy they decided at least not to cancel the competition as this gives me an opportunity to compete at a re-arranged competition,” she explains. “I’m not someone who looks at the world rankings, I prefer to focus on myself. But I think a realistic goal is to make the final in both events, to throw more than 16m in the shot and get the highest place I can.”

All-round thrower

Currently back in full training, Kaia, who admits she is “a geek” who loves to study, has the long-term ambition to win an Olympic gold medal.

But should she one day go on to achieve her lofty goal the next question might be in which event does she see her future?

“I’m not too sure, I like both events,” she adds. “I like the fact if the shot is going badly then the discus is probably going well. I also like the way the discus flies but I also like the feel of the shot put.”

Story Credit: Athletics New Zealand