Mansfield Harriers teenager snatches English Schools’ bronze

Luke Duffy, of Mansfield Harriers, with his bronze medal at the English Schools Championships.
Luke Duffy, of Mansfield Harriers, with his bronze medal at the English Schools Championships.

In one of the most exciting races of the day, Luke Duffy, of Mansfield Harriers, bagged a bronze medal at the English Schools Track and Field Championships.

Duffy was one of ten Harriers to grace the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham, and went into the senior boys’ 1500m with high hopes of success.

After a slowly-run first 1100m, he missed the break with 400 to go and despite running the last lap in under 54 seconds, he couldn’t peg back the front two, finishing in three minutes, 54.29 seconds. Only 0.53 seconds separated the first four home.

Also making the top five, but just finishing outside the medals, was Amber Scott, who was a terrific fifth in the senior girls’ 1500m steeplechase.

She was always in the leading group, but struggled with the outside water jump, which took its toll on the last lap when she slipped from third and tired in the final 100m to come home in 5.10.76.

In the intermediate boys’ 3000m, Harriers’ Jenson Connell was the slowest of the 17 competitors, so to finish 11th with a five-second personal-best time of 8.57.05 was a superb effort. Starting at the back, he clawed his way through the field and broke nine minutes for the first time.

Elsewhere, Phil Shaw won the men’s over-50 veteran category at the Crich Memorial Fell Race over 11km, recording a time of 47.31 minutes. Maddy Collinge was also first in the over-65 women’s veteran class, clocking 77.23.

The fastest Harriers were Gary Morley in 49.25 and Clive Buck in 50.04.