Cooper Stable eye off strong start to season

Paddy Turner is set for a big year according to coach Marcus Cooper. Picture: Kate Healy

Paddy Turner is set for a big year according to coach Marcus Cooper. Picture: Kate Healy

The Victorian Athletics League season started at the weekend but Ararat’s Cooper Stable of athletes will have to wait a little longer to hit the track.

Coach Marcus Cooper said he was changing tactics this season and will delay the start of competition for the athletes to hopefully improve their performances later in the year.

“We will send a couple to the Meadowglen meet on November 26,” he said.

“There is not enough races going there to send the whole squad, so Paddy Turner and Angus Burns and maybe one or two others will go there then we will have a few more going to the Warrnambool Gift.

“The Terang Gift will be where we all go and really get the season underway which is on December 3.”

The squad has been training for the past two months to prepare for the season and while Cooper has not seen some people return, he is happy with other athletes and how they are preparing during the week.

“We have stepped it up, so there are a few sore bodies with that but there is a lot more hard work to be done,” he said.

“We have not done as much as we normally would but that has been done intentionally.

“Normally we are up and about for the start but then dip, so we are changing tact and starting a bit later.”

Turner and Tom Walker have been keeping active during the offseason and will be two guys to watch during the season. Cooper said Burns has also shown progression while Jess Burns, Mia Robb, Greta Fennell have joined the group. Tayla Notting is also making a return.