Tasmanian running sensation Stewart McSweyn doubled up on national titles by blitzing the 5000m field at the Melbourne Track Classic on Thursday night.
After setting a new Australian record in the Zatopek 10 before Christmas, the King Island 24-year-old became the first to win the national 5000m-10,000m double since Canberra's Brett Robinson in 2014-15.
Minutes after crossing the line in 13.38.77, McSweyn dedicated the win to Australian athletics icon Maurie Plant, who died last month aged 66.
"I'm wearing the armband tonight for the contribution of Maurie Plant, not just for me but the whole athletics community," McSweyn told Tamsyn Manou post-race.
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"When I was an up-and-comer he showed a lot of faith in me and he definitely snuck me into races where I probably wasn't good enough so he definitely played a massive role in my career. To be able to do that for him meant a lot."
McSweyn, who has run Olympic qualifiers across 1500m, 5000m and 10,000m distances, broke away with a 2:34 fourth kilometre and finished 10 seconds clear of Matthew Ramdsen.
"I've already got the qualifying time so this was about racing," McSweyn said.
"I've got to be able to do what I did at Zatopek but I've also got to be able to do it in a more slow tactical race.
"I know I'm fitter than this time last season which is a positive thing and I'm excited for what's to come."
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