An outstanding performance by youngster Kelsey Pearce was the highlight of a sun-baked curtain-raiser to the new track and field season for Mansfield Harriers.
Athletes competed at the Spring Spruce event at the Harvey Hadden Stadium in Nottingham, and Pearce took the U15 girls’ shot put competition by storm.
The versatile teenager, who is also an accomplished javelin-thrower, launched the shot out to 11.57 metres, which was a new outdoor best and puts her among the best in the country in her age group.
Also at U15 level, Jessica Lake continued her bright start to the season by winning her best event, the 75m hurdles, in 12.23 seconds and her 100m heat in 13.64. She also went to a height of 1.40 metres in the high jump and leapt 4.51 metres in the long jump.
Katie Kemp ran two good personal-best (PB) times into a strong headwind, winning her 200m in 28.68 and clocking 14.09 for the 100m. She also threw 8.04 metres in the shot, while Bryony Evans also clocked PBs in the sprints, recording 29.24 and 14.70 respectively, again defying the wind.
For the U13s, Alex Foster marked her move up the age groups by celebrating her first victory in Mansfield colours, and on her 800m debut, as she powered home in two minutes, 45.72 seconds. Not to be outdone, her training and racing partner Beth Hamilton unveiled a tactical race beyond her young years to finish second on her 1200m bow, clocking 4.10.87, having already run 23.92 in the 150m.
In the same age categhory, Tia Jones ran 24.62 in the 150m, finished third in the 75m and posted 1.15 metres for the high jump, while Ruby Milnes posted a time of 3.05.76 in the 800m and recorded 1.05 in the high jump.
For the boys, U15 Ben Madeley performed with distinction in the long jump, hitting 4.72 metres, and the 100m, posting a time of 13.49 seconds.
In the U11 boys’ quadrathlon, Matthew Young produced a fantastic display to finish second with new bests in the howler javelin, long jump and 600m in which he shaved a huge six seconds off his previous PB to record a time of 1.57 minutes.
And at U13 level, Alistair Homewood ran a PB in the 800m of 2.47 minutes before he suffered atrocious luck in the 100m when an opponent ran wide of his designated and knocked him out of the race.
Meanwhile, on the roads, Steve Davies warmed up for the London Marathon later this month by running a pleasing 41.42 minutes in the Birmingham 10k, just ahead of teammate Helen Pritchett in 46.02.
The previous week, Antony Robinson led in the Harriers contingent in the Lincoln 10k, finishing in a highly respectable 39.41, ahead of Pete Copcutt in 53.43 and Trevor Hiscox in 56.08. For the ladies, Tina Copcutt came home in a superb, new PB time of 56.06, while Jemma Arbon crossed the line in 57.51.