Stewart McSweyn breaks Tasmanian mile record

King Island runner Stewart McSweyn. Picture: Getty Images
King Island runner Stewart McSweyn. Picture: Getty Images

Tasmanian runner Stewart McSweyn cemented his affections for Ireland by recording another significant time in the country.

Less than a week after running a world championship qualifier of 13:19 in the 5000-metres, the 22-year-old King Islander has shown his versatility by running the third fastest mile by an Australian this year.

McSweyn’s time of 3:55.97 at the Cork City Sports meet broke the Tasmanian record and moved him into the top 15 on the Australian all-time rankings list for the distance.

Ryan Foster was the only Tasmanian to have previously broken the four-minute mark having run 3.58.49 in the US in 2011.

Other Tasmanians to have gone close include Randal Markey, who ran 4.00.8 in Melbourne way back in 1974 (21 years before McSweyn was born), John Denholm (4.01.0 in Hobart three years earlier), James Hansen (4.02.07 in Perth last year) and Peter Brasher (4.02.2 in Adelaide in 1980). 

McSweyn will find out next week whether he has made the team for the world champs at London’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park from August 5-13.

Athletics Australia will announce the final team following the closure of the qualifying period on Sunday with four Tasmanians in the mix to be named.

Hobart’s Hamish Peacock, 26, is Australia’s leading candidate in the men’s javelin and is seeking to add a third world championship to his involvement at the 2016 Olympics and 2014 Commonwealth Games where he claimed a bronze medal.

Launceston-born duo Josh Harris, 27, and Milly Clark, 28, have both achieved the qualification criteria in the marathon. Clark (now representing NSW) was the leading Australian in the event at the Rio Olympics.