02.Jun.12 England Athletics Closed Senior and Aviva Parallel Success Championships
The England Athletics Closed Senior and Aviva Parallel Success Championships has got off to a good start with Sarah Holt retaining her title thanks to a Championship Best of 68.50 in the hammer. Follow the action and get updated results here.
Sale Harrier Sarah has previously competed for England in the Commonwealth Games and has improved steadily year on year with her latest effort being a qualifying standard for the European Championships and just half a metre short of the Olympic B standard.
Nadia Williams proved once again that she is back in form after pulling both her hamstrings early on in the season, following her win for England at the Loughborough International with her third national triple jump title.
This sensational hat trick was made even better by the fact that, as well as a consistent series, her best effort of 13.71m was just 6cm off her lifetime best.
In the men's long jump came undoubtedly the breakthrough performance of the day, as 17-year-old Oliver Newport smashed his lifetime best by over half a metre to win the long jump with 7.70m in the final. This followed a 7.32m in qualifying which itself was a personal best.
Southampton's James Forman sensibly ran hard in the 400m semi finals to clock a fast time of 50.54, just outside his personal best despite winning his heat in under 53 seconds at the start of the day.
Deji Tobais and Louise Bloor took the respective 100m titles, traditionally the culmination of the timetable on day one.
British Universities silver medallist Abi Haywood won the pole vault with 3.82m and Tom Parsons jumped 2.21m to win the high jump, while the women's discus saw the top two ranked athletes in 2012 so far do battle, with Jade Nicholls edging it thanks to a 54.84m throw from Eden Francis' 50.25m effort.
With entries growing from 57 to 80 for the second year of Aviva Parallel Success events at the England Championships, events featured numerous medallists from past Paralympics and World Championships being pushed by a new wave of exciting prospects.
Medals were awarded to the highest scoring athletes for each event based on Raza Points. This presents an opportunity for athletes from a range of classification groups to compete together and to record individual performances recognised on international rankings, eligible for Paralympic selection.
The highest scoring performance of the day came in the second race for Sophia Warner (Worthing) in 17.39s for over 1000 points. The 2011 World silver medallist placed ahead of three GB athletes Katrina Hart (Birchfield), Bethany Woodward (Southampton) and Hazel Robson (Gateshead). Closely followed by Olivia Breen (Portsmouth) in 5th in her first season as a T38 athlete, recording a PB of 14.50s.
In the Men’s 100m as expected Beijing silver medallist Ben Rushgrove (Team Bath) won the overall title. The surprise addition to the podium was Sam Ruddock (Charnwood) competing in only his 5th 100m race following his transfer from American Football at Loughborough University, just outside his PB time with 14.10s.
Familiar to Oscar Pistorius, a few Paralympic athletes were placed in non-disability events. Recent BP Paralympic World Cup champion Jonathan Peacock (Enfield & Haringey) clocked his second fastest time of 11.44s in the 100m. Visually impaired athletes Lisa Daley (Blackpool) and Jack Roughan (Birchfield) followed suit in the 400m and 100m respectively.
Dwarf athletes took most of the medals in the ambulant throws, with Sean Clare (pictured, Liverpool) taking both the shot and discus titles, alongside Holly Neill (Yeovil) and Sophie Hancock (Horwich) in the women’s championship events.
Wheelchair races featuring T52-T53 athletes (spinal injury and amputees) against T34 (cerebral palsy) athletes were dominated by the latter group. Ever-improving youngsters Isaac Towers against Ben Rowlings (Coventry) sharing the 100m and 400m titles. World top five Mel Nicholls in the T34 class won the 100m and fellow Godiva athlete Charlotte Moore taking the 400m.
Results are updated throughout the weekend here.
EATV video coverage of all the events will be available to view exclusively on EATV as soon as we receive the videos from Athleticos.
England Athletics Online store
Click here to visit the Official England Athletics online store.