WADA involvement something to consider for passionate Tallent

BACK HOME: Jared Tallent with the Ballarat Racewalking Club while nephew, Brodie and niece, Jorja hold the trophy. Picture: Luka Kauzlaric

BACK HOME: Jared Tallent with the Ballarat Racewalking Club while nephew, Brodie and niece, Jorja hold the trophy. Picture: Luka Kauzlaric

Ballarat walker and Olympic gold medallist Jared Tallent has expressed his interest in becoming involved in the World Anti-Doping Association once his decorated career comes to an end.

Tallent, who was denied his Olympic moment at the 2012 London Games but has since been awarded his gold medal, has been extremely vocal in his views towards drugs in sport and in particularly drugs in his beloved walking.

The typically reserved 32-year-old has publicly voiced his opinion in the fight to keep sport clean of drug cheats, attaching the terms “gutless” and “disgrace” to those that attempt to stain the sport with the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Tallent told The Courier following his walk in his own race – the annual junior Jared Tallent 1.5km Perpetual Trophy – that his passion around the ever-present issue would be something he’d consider post-career.

“I think the first step would be trying to apply for the WADA athletes commission to have my voice heard there. That would be an incredible thing to be a part of and try and make a real change from an athletes opinion, so that’s something to consider” Tallent said.

“And also gather opinions from other athletes that I speak to and put their voice forward.”

Tallent said it was great to return home and race in an event in his own town and even more special to take part in an event named after him.

He walked off a handicap against some of Ballarat’s junior walkers, including his niece and nephew – Jorja and Brodie.

“It was a fun event to be a part of, I haven’t raced with the Ballarat Racewalking Club in quite a while because I’ve been away at other competitions.

“It was pretty special, this race being named after me – it’s an honour.

“I think they really appreciated having me out there after seeing me in Rio.”

In an added bonus to the day, Jorja Tallent won the race around North Gardens.

”I’m very proud, it’s good to see my nephew and niece take up the sport.”

Tallent also took his Olympic medals to the Ballarat little athletics on Saturday.

FORMER Ballarat-based Stewart McSweyn took out the men’s 10km at the Melbourne Marathon Festival on Sunday.

Originally from King Island, McSweyn attended Ballarat Clarendon College and while attending the school in the city ran with Eureka Athletic Club.

He is now based in Tasmania.

Another Eureka representative, Melbourne-based Olympian Brett Robinson won the half marathon.