Fires burning in the Canberra region have forced athletes into a mad scramble on the road to Tokyo as they look to launch into an Olympic Games year.
Canberra airport was shut down with flights diverted away from the capital on Thursday as fires blazed in nearby areas.
It left athletes rushing to find alternative transport to Canberra ahead of the Athletics ACT championships beginning at the AIS on Friday.
Jack Hale was unable to squeeze in a planned session on the track on Thursday while Celeste Mucci was stranded at Melbourne airport.
Athletics ACT executive officer James Kaan hopes the fires will have no impact on the biggest ACT championships event in recent memory with 802 entries for the four-day event.
The bulk of the events begin on Saturday which means the majority of athletes should arrive in time provided the blazes are controlled. But now athletics officials must contend with the possibility of poor air quality.
"Unfortunately the bushfires have been devastating to a huge part of the NSW community," Kaan said.
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"A lot of the people down the coast are members with us as well, so we feel the effects of what they've gone through.
"Even though we got a record number of entries this year, I still think we would have got more without the bushfires and the poor air quality in Canberra [earlier this month].
"I've had a few athletes contact me saying they are staying at the AIS and they weren't going to make it in before 10pm [on Thursday].
"They were worried about whether they would still get to their accommodation or not, so it's not great.
"Hopefully they can get on flights [on Friday] morning. I've had a couple of people tell me they've got flights to Sydney and they will just hire a car and drive down."
Anneliese Rubie has withdrawn from the 200m and 400m events having picked up a minor injury concern. But the Canberra-born Olympic semi-finalist is confident of a speedy return.
"I've just got a little niggle," Rubie said. "Everyone is just erring on the caution while we've got some time up our sleeves before the big races."