Bathurst 1000 under way

Pole sitter Jamie Whincup took a gamble and handed the reins to co-driver Paul Dumbrell for Sunday’s crucial start of the Bathurst 1000 at Mount Panorama.

Racing began with Dumbrell starting from the front row alongside Ford threat Mark Winterbottom – yet to taste victory on the mountain.

Usually, lead drivers were behind the wheel for the critical race start but Whincup said he had more than enough confidence in Dumbrell to hold his nerve.

“I find it challenging jumping into the car after the race has started so I did not want to put that pressure on Paul at all.

“So with me being a regular driver and knowing the car well, I can jump into the second stint – well that’s the plan anyway.

“We are really lucky that Paul’s times are as quick as mine, so we don’t need to concentrate on Paul doing the minimal amount of laps.

V8 Supercars series leader Whincup and Dumbrell are the defending champions for the 161-lap epic which is expected to be hit by showers later on Sunday.

It also marks Whincup’s Holden teammate and five-time Bathurst champion Craig Lowndes’ 20th Bathurst start and 500th V8 touring car start.

He was set to start from sixth on the 29-car grid but handed the first shift to co-driver Warren Luff.

Australian trio take five in Moscow Swimming Australia

Source: Swimming.org.au

Australian swimmers Robert Hurley, Kenneth To and Ashley Delaney have finished the first night of the FINA World Cup in Moscow with an impressive five medals between them.

The first medals came in the final of the men’s 100m backstroke when Hurley and Delaney took the top two spots on the podium.

World Short Course representative, Hurley, led from the start and finished almost a second ahead of fellow Aussie Delaney (51.13) to grab the gold medal in a time of 50.32.

Rounding out the top three was Poland’s Radoslaw Kawecki in 51.28.

Twenty-five-year-old Hurley then showed his versatility in the pool with a second place finish behind Russian swimmer Myles Brown (3:41.79) in the men’s 400m freestyle.

Hurley’s time of 3:43.89 was enough to sneak into the silver medal position ahead of Lucas Da Cruz Kanieski from Brazil (3:44.75).

2012 FINA World Cup Champion, To, also had a stellar night in the pool picking up two silver medals.

To’s first silver came in his pet event the men’s 100m individual medley, hitting the wall in a time of 51.83 just 0.22 of a second behind gold medal winner Vladimir Morozov (51.61) from Russia.

The bronze medal went to Trinidad and Tobago swimmer George Bovell, one second behind To in 52.88.

In the men’s 100m freestyle final, To was forced to settle for silver as he finished just behind a speedy Morozov (45.68) for the second time that night.

To clocked an impressive 46.87 for the silver medal to finish ahead of Poland’s Konrad Czerniak in 47.34.

The Moscow leg of the FINA World Cup will continue tonight with full results and information available at http://www.fina.org.

Push grows for Aussie Socceroos coach ANGE Postecoglou

Source: TheAustralian

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ANGE Postecoglou has urged caution about the growing push for a homegrown Socceroos coach, insisting ability matters far more than nationality.

Football Federation Australia chief executive David Gallop says feelers have already been put out to find Holger Osieck’s replacement.

Internationals including Guus Hiddink and Gerrard Houllier have been linked with the vacant role while Australian coaches such as Postecoglou and Graham Arnold are also believed to be in the frame.

Arnold has already put his hand up and says he believes the time is right for a local to lead the Socceroos.

That view has been strongly backed by fellow A-League coaches John Aloisi and Alistair Edwards, while Gallop says having an Australian coach is the long-term preference, regardless of whether a local is appointed this time.

While Postecoglou said he would do whatever he can to help grow the game in Australia, he added that appointing a coach just because they’re Australian would be the wrong approach.

“The only thing I would recommend strongly is to appoint the best person for the job,” Postecoglou told reporters.

“I don’t like this whole ‘Let’s go local as opposed to overseas.’

“It’s our national team, whoever the best person for the job is, that’s who should get it.”

But Arnold believes it’s time to have an Australian.

“I do believe Australian coaches are now ready. Probably the criticism a few years ago was right and was correct because I didn’t even have a pro licence,” he said.

“But now I do have a pro licence and the coaching across the board is so much better.

“I do believe that probably an Australian with the passion and the pride to coach the Socceroos would be fantastic, whoever it is, whether it’s Ange, Tony Popovic or whoever.”

Aloisi, the former Socceroo whose penalty goal famously put Australia into the 2006 World Cup, agreed there were coaches in the A-League ready to step up either now, or in the near future.

“Are we bringing in foreign coaches just for the sake of it or have we got coaches good enough to end up coaching at that level?” he said

“I think that we’ve got a few that are good enough.”

Edwards said Postecoglou would be his choice, based on his experience and domestic achievements.

“It’s always good to look overseas to see what we can learn from but I think we’ve done that and I think the coaches we have in the A-League now and the brand of football that is being played, on and off the park, they’re good managers, they’re good technical coaches and I think the time is right for us to put in a local coach,” Edwards said.