Mansfield Harriers youngsters compete at English Schools championships

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Four Mansfield Harriers competed at the 86th English Schools Athletics Association championships held at Gateshead on the 8th and 9th of July.

The event is the premier track and field competition for athletes of school age.

Leading the way for the club was Luke Duffy in the inter boys 1500 metres, having comfortably qualified through the heats on Friday in 4.05.21 he ran the race of his life on Saturday to finish fourth in a new personal best time of 4.00.98.

In a thrilling sprint to the line Luke was only 0.8 seconds from winning and 0.4 from a podium place. His consolation is that he is still in this age group next year, was the first year 10 athlete to finish and is currently the fastest year 10 athlete in the UK.

Chloe Allcock competed in the junior girl’s high jump and put in an impressive competition to clear 1.60 metre which is very close to her best of 1.62.

She was agonisingly close to a new best of 1.63 clearing the bar but clipping it with her legs as she came down. The performance was good enough for a superb seventh place overall.

Bethany Williams ran in the senior girls 1500 metres which was a slow and tactical race and she found it tough being bumped several times and finished with spike marks all down her legs.

However, the last 600 metres of the race was rapid and she still managed to record a new best time of 4.41.28 to finish ninth.

Alex Rieley competed in the senior boys 1500 metres and after doing a Duke of Edinburgh exercise over the previous weekend found he ran out of steam in the last 100 metres to narrowly miss out on the final.

Alex in his last school’s competition had the honour of leading the Nottinghamshire team in the parade.

On Saturday night three athletes competed in the British Milers Club grand prix event at Solihull.

In far from ideal conditions Chris Brown confirmed recent form running 1.54.69 for the 800 metres and Cam Walker ran 1.58. 56.

Ella Hughes after taking a step back for a few weeks due to exams at University showed she is now moving in the right direction recording 4.43.2.

The final fixture of the Nottinghamshire mini league took place last week and the club had 32 athletes compete on the day with over 83 events and 20 new best performances. For the team the highlight was the U15 girls winning the competition overall, the U13 girls coming second and the Under 11 boys finishing fourth and girls third. The U13 and U15 boys both placed seventh.

The club had four record breakers throughout the season, Tania Smith taking the U13 long jump with 4.69 metres, Henry Bullough the U13 high jump 1.45 metres, Kelsey Pearce the U15 girls Javelin with 29.74 metres and Chloe Allcock the U15 high jump 1.57 metres.

The competition has been a huge success for the club with big numbers at each of the four meetings and athletes progressing throughout the season.

On the day the U15 girls were superb with Kelsey Pearce’s huge Javelin throw and Sophia Stewart producing two great runs in the sprint events.

These two were backed up with solid performances from Holly Spencer, Jess Lake, Katie Kemp and Kelly Seaman.

The U13 girls only had four athletes on the day however Tania Smith remained dominant and was ably backed up by Bryony Evans, Sophie Brown and Tathya Bascombe. Henry Bullough was the only U13 boy to compete winning the High Jump.

The U11’s was particularly pleasing with big numbers competing in both boys and girls events.

For the girls Grace Manson scored well and produced new bests in the 600, 150 and long jump with Beth Hamilton and Alex Foster also producing new best times in the 600.

Sophie Evans produced a fantastic throw in the howler Javelin winning the event in a new best of 20.70 metres.

Also competing on the day was Tammy Smith, Lucy Sissons, Emma Greasby, Katie Manning, Elizabeth Sinclair, Zoe Spencer, and Matilda Evans.

For the boys Alistair Holmewood ran a superb 600 metres and also scoring in the 75 metres followed closely by Harry Bolam. Matthew Young recorded new bests in the 600 and the howler javelin, with Michael Manning and Jake Orr also competing in the age group.

Also competing for the club was Sam Bentley, Rob Ellis, Jonah Goodfellow-Beeton, Grace Angus and Callie Foster.

On the roads the fourth of the Booths Decorators league took place at Carsington Water with the Harriers having 12 athletes complete the course.

Nigel Watkin’s performance was the highlight of the night finishing 44th overall and first over 55. Phil Shaw was second over 50 and the first in for the club on the night placing 32nd.

Following in was Matt Bradbury 66th, Martin Fickling 78th, Gary Hodgkins 79th, Alan Kemp 90th, Colin Fell 136th and Gary Towle 149th. For the ladies Bev Armstrong was 22nd followed by Jackie Duers 69th, Christine Fell 75th and Amanda Shaw 78th. In the team events the men finished eighth and the ladies 12th.

Maddy Collinge and Kirsty Fairbairn-Wint competed in the Wheatley summer event today over varying distance and multi terrain.

Kirsty competed in the 11 mile run finishing in 1 hour 40 and Maddy ran 13 miles in 2.05.